Gordon Whitener Chairman & Founder
Gordon Whitener is the co-founder of MANDT VR, and principal at The Whitener Company.
Throughout his career, Gordon has worked to create and lead successful teams as president and CEO of companies including SportsMyx Holdings, Host Communications, and Interface Americas. Now, as an executive with over 30 years of experience in sports media and marketing, Gordon utilizes his unique skills and resources to build successful companies and position them for growth.
In 2016, Gordon produced the feature film “Dog Years,” starring Burt Reynolds, which has been accepted at the 2017 Tribeca Film Festival.
Neil Mandt Chief Executive Officer & Founder
Neil Mandt is the founder and CEO of Los Angeles-based companies Mandt Bros. Production, and MANDT VR.
Neil is an Emmy Award-winning producer with a wealth of experience creating content for television, film, internet, and mobile audiences. Neil has created over 3,000 television episodes, and has developed series including ESPN’s “Jim Rome Is Burning,” Syfy’s “Destination Truth,” and Food Network’s “The Shed”. He also produced NBC’s coverage of the 2000 Summer Olympics, for which he won an Emmy, and provided daily coverage of the O.J. Simpson trial for ABC News.
In 2014, Neil developed and co-produced the Walt Disney Pictures feature film “Million Dollar Arm,” starring John Hamm. He has also produced and directed award-winning short films starring Bruce Willis, Justin Timberlake, and Jamie Foxx, among others.
Most recently, Neil produced the feature film “Dog Years,” starring Burt Reynolds, which has been accepted at the 2017 Tribeca Film Festival.
Lawton Logan Chief Revenue Officer
Lawton Logan is the chief revenue officer at MANDT VR, and a principle at The Whitener Company.
Prior to working with MANDT VR, Lawton was the chief revenue and marketing officer of sports media company Silver Chalice. He also held the position of senior vice president of U.S. business development for IMG, and was responsible for sponsorship sales, marketing, and strategic partnerships for IMG College.
As an officer of the company at Triple Crown Media/Host Communications, Lawton was instrumental in the turnaround of the business, and in its eventual sale to IMG Worldwide. Lawton also had a successful tenure with WSB Sports Marketing, where he developed and sold sports marketing programs for the radio broadcasts of the University of Georgia, Atlanta Braves, and Atlanta Hawks.
Brett Thomason Chief Operating Officer
Brett Thomason is the chief operating officer for MANDT VR, and the president and chief financial officer at Whitener Entertainment Group.
Brett began his career at Cydcor, where he established and managed one of the nation’s leading business and residential sales and marketing teams for Fortune 500 companies. He has also founded multiple ventures including First Step Advertising, which spearheaded online menu, ordering, and delivery services, and Pioneer Social, which leveraged social media development to increase companies’ profitability.
In 2012, Brett founded Thomason Consulting and Thomason Acquisition & Investment. He also co-founded Tennessee Innovative, a consulting venture firm. While managing these entities, Brett served on an elite sales team at Lakewood Capital Group, where he was a repeat member of the Multi-Million Dollar Sales Club from 2011-2015.
In 2016, Brett was an executive producer on the feature film “Dog Years,” starring Burt Reynolds, which has been accepted at the 2017 Tribeca Film Festival.
Brian Cavallaro Chief Creative Officer
Brian Cavallaro is the chief creative officer for MANDT VR, and the director of development and vice president of production for Mandt Bros. Productions. He is also a member of both the Directors Guild of America and the Producers Guild of America.
An Emmy Award-winning commercial director, Brian has created branded content for Woven Digital, Disney Parks, and Disney Channel, where he was also the executive producer and director of the first ever live streamed 360° hosted program.
Brian has been on the forefront of creative content and technology since he directed the first feature-length high definition film at the University of Miami. Since then, Brian has produced and directed documentary series for Discovery, Fox, and NBC, as well as environmental documentaries for Al Gore, Mark Cuban, and Wildlife Alliance. His documentary “Overfished,” narrated by Daryl Hannah, was featured at the Cannes Film Festival.
Brian recently produced three movies being released in 2017, “Those Eyes,” starring Ethan Embry, “Trusted,” starring Frank Whaley and “Dog Years,” starring Burt Reynolds and Ariel Winter, which will have it’s world premiere at the Tribeca Film Festival.
Chadwick Turner Chief Strategy Officer
Chadwick Turner is the chief strategy officer for MANDT VR. He is also the founder and former chief creative officer of Circle VR, an immersive media consultancy and content development studio.
Chadwick has extensive experience in the virtual reality sphere, having worked in the industry for much of his career. In 2013, Chadwick worked as a business development executive for the Amazon Appstore, where he developed Amazon’s virtual reality strategy. He also served as the head of content partnerships at Vrideo, a cross-platform distributor of 360° video, and consulted with companies including Amazon, Mattel, and Riot Games.
Chadwick has also worked in strategic business development, technical, and marketing roles at 21st Century Fox, Creative Artists Agency, and IM Global Films.
Ian Donahue Chief Product Officer
Ian Donahue is the chief product officer for MANDT VR. He also co-founded Freeform Labs, an augmented and virtual reality content studio that sold its second title, “Craftmas,” to MANDT VR.
Earlier in his career, Ian helped establish Blackstone LaunchPad USC, where he worked with digital products, e-commerce, and publishing. In 2008, Ian co-founded a virtual MVPD—a cable TV operator—that used peer-to-peer systems to livestream channels across borders in Asia.
Ian studied at the USC School of Cinematic Arts, and the Greif Center for Entrepreneurial Studies at the Marshall School of Business, where he received the Marcia Israel Award.
Crowley Sullivan Executive Vice President, Planning & General Manager, Sports
Crowley Sullivan is the general manager of sports for MANDT VR.
An Emmy Award- and Peabody Award-winning producer, Crowley has served as the executive vice president and general manager of Campus Insiders. There, he spearheaded the development and expansion of programming and content creation initiatives. He also forged partnerships with conferences including Mountain West, Atlantic 10, West Coast Conference, Patriot League, Conference USA, and Big 12. As part of his responsibilities, he secured veteran broadcast talent, and expanded the broadcast of live events and original content.
Crowley played a key role in the early development of ESPN Original Entertainment, serving as executive producer for successful programs including “Pardon The Interruption,” “Around The Horn,” and “Playmakers.” Crowley also worked as executive producer and senior vice president of business development for Red Line Films, a New York City-based content creation company.
George Sells General Manager, News
George Sells is the general manager of news for MANDT VR. An award-winning journalist, George has nearly twenty-five years of experience in broadcasting and digital journalism.
George has covered many of the nation’s most significant recent historical events. He was on the ground in Ferguson, Missouri during the civil unrest that shook the foundation of race relations in America, and in Lower Manhattan in the days following the 9/11 attacks. George has been in the eye of three hurricanes, and has interviewed and covered six former presidents.
Now, George’s award-winning reporting will usher in a new era of news—one in which viewers are fully immersed in the story as it unfolds.