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Meet...

The Midwest Gaming Classic is pleased to welcome the following industry professionals to our event this year! We expect to host more than 100 special guests, so make sure to stop back as we update the list.

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List subject to change.

Rob Anthony

Rob Anthony

Rob Anthony

Rob Anthony

Rob started working at a local arcade at age 13 and immediately took to the service aspect of the games. After running an amusement route, and taking technical trainings from Williams, Bally, NSM, Atari, and Rowe he developed extensive board repair experience and can troubleshoot and repair most any issue. He travels all over the US repairing games and will be offering on site board and game repair at the show!

Kimberly (Kim) Bending

Kimberly (Kim) Bending

Kimberly (Kim) Bending

Kimberly (Kim) Bending

Kim is a buyer at Stern Pinball!

Stern Pinball, Inc. designs and manufactures arcade-quality pinball games. It is the only maker of arcade-quality pinball games in the world and is located just outside Chicago, Illinois. For a quarter of a century Stern has continued to carry the pinball banner and promote the game throughout the world.

Chuck Bleich

Chuck Bleich

Chuck Bleich

Chuck Bleich

Williams Pinball, Midway Games, Stern Pinball*

Electrical Engineer

Chuck presently oversees all electronic development at Stern Pinball. This encompasses system design, vendor interface, proto-type coordination and regulatory compliance. In short, all aspects related to electronics from concept, into production are within Chuck’s domain!

John Borg

John Borg

John Borg

John Borg

Data East Pinball, Sega Pinball, Stern Pinball*

Pinball Game Designer

Pinball designer John Borg has created more than 25 iconic titles including Star Wars, Jurassic Park, Tales From the Crypt, Guns N’ Roses, Iron Man, Metallica, Tron, Aerosmith and the latest Stern Pinball machine Guardians of the Galaxy!

 Brett Weiss

Brett Weiss

 Brett Weiss

Brett Weiss

Longtime gamer, freelance writer, and national columnist Brett Weiss has been a respected journalist and historian in the gaming and pop culture communities for well over two decades. His work has appeared in numerous publications, including Old School Gamer, Game Informer, Gameroom Magazine, Classic Gamer Magazine, the Pingame Journal, Video Game Collector, Video Game Trader, Fangoria, Filmfax, and AntiqueWeek, among many others.


Weiss is also the author of 10 books, including the Classic Home Video Games series, The 100 Greatest Console Video Games: 1977-1987, Encyclopedia of KISS, and The SNES Omnibus volumes 1 and 2. Brett is the host of a quickly growing YouTube show, Tales from a Retro Gamer.

John Buscaglia

John Buscaglia

John Buscaglia

John Buscaglia

Stern Pinball*

Chief Revenue Officer, VP of Sales and Marketing at Stern Pinball, Inc.

John is the Chief Revenue Officer and VP of Sales and Marketing at Stern Pinball, Inc. Before pinball, he had experience in leadership with many other Fortune 500 companies. Picture courtesy of the PinGame Journal.

Don Caldwell

Don Caldwell

Don Caldwell

Don Caldwell

Independent

Historian

Don is a pinball historian that has been studying, writing about and hosting seminars on the industry for more than 15 years. Picture courtesy of the PinGame Journal.

Waison Cheng

Waison Cheng

Waison Cheng

Waison Cheng

Neopong Software, inXile Entertainment, Incredible Technologies, Stern Pinball*

Software Engineer

Waison is a game designer for Stern Pinball, having worked on games like Aerosmith, Star Trek, KISS, Game of Thrones and Avengers to name a few. Before that, he worked on the Golden Tee series for Incredible Technologies, and before that on programming games for the Nintendo DS!

Brian Eddy

Brian Eddy

Brian Eddy

Brian Eddy

Williams, Stern Pinball*

Senior Game Designer

Brian Eddy started in pinball doing effects, moved on to software and then got the chance to design games, and… wow! Brian designed both Attack from Mars and Medieval Madness, two of the best rated pinball machines ever! Recently, it was announced that Brian has returned to pinball with Stern pinball as Senior Game Designer!

Elliot Eismin

Elliot Eismin

Elliot Eismin

Elliot Eismin

Stern Pinball

Mechanical Engineer

A mechanical engineer with Stern Pinball who has worked on Ghostbusters, Legends of Wrestlemania and Wrestlemania.

Chuck Ernst

Chuck Ernst

Chuck Ernst

Chuck Ernst

Atari Video Games, Midway Games, Warner Brother's Interactive NetherRealm Studios, Stern Pinball*

CG art director

Chuck has had more than 28 years programming and has more than 40 titles that he did! He is currently the CG art director at Stern Pinball, but his lengthy resume includes stints with Warner Brothers Interactive, Midway Games and Atari Video Games!

Gary Flower

Gary Flower

Gary Flower

Gary Flower

Independent*

Writer, Historian

Gary is an author and historian for the hobby of pinball, perhaps most well known for his outstanding book “The Lure of the Silver Ball.” Gary has also done countless presentations and seminars to help share his knowledge and keep the history of pinball alive, including helping to invite many of our pinball VIPs to the show this year!

Greg Freres

Greg Freres

Greg Freres

Greg Freres

Bally Pinball, Williams Pinball, Whizbang Pinball*, Jersey Jack Pinball, Stern Pinball*

Artist and Art Director

Greg has created iconic work for games like Fathom, Strange Science, Elvira and the Party Monsters, Scared Stiff, Star Trek: The Next Generation, Smash TV, Cruis’n USA, Whoa Nellie! Big Juicy Melons and many more! Today, he serves as Stern Pinball’s art director.

Mark Galvez

Mark Galvez

Mark Galvez

Mark Galvez

Stern Pinball

Lead Animator

Mark Galvez was a member of the design team for titles like KISS, The Walking Dead, Iron Man, Metallica, and more!

Dirty Donny Gillies

Dirty Donny Gillies

Dirty Donny Gillies

Dirty Donny Gillies

Top Fuels, Snap-On, Vans, AMT, Fender, Dunlop, Stern Pinball, Midwest Gaming Classic

Artist

Deemed to be one of the most influential artists to invade the pop culture scenes of the punk, rock and metal underground, Dirty Donny has been spreading his art across all mediums for decades. First hired by Metallica, in the more than decade since he began he has designing art for Top Fuels Funny cars, skateboard shoes, guitars and guitar accessories, model kits and pinball machines for the likes of Snap-on, Vans, AMT, Fender, Dunlop, Stern Pinball, and now, the Midwest Gaming Classic!

Erik Gilly

Erik Gilly

Erik Gilly

Erik Gilly

Bally Namco Amusement America, Stern Pinball*

Director of Consumer Sales

Erik is the main person at Stern pinball who helps to manage and grow the Stern distribution chain, helping to get the machines that Stern is building into people’s hands to play! Before working at Stern, Erik played a similar role for Bandai Namco.

Carson Gunby

Carson Gunby

Carson Gunby

Carson Gunby

Stern Pinball

IT Specialist

Carson is usually busy making sure all the computer systems and network infrastructure are all up to the task of allowing our talented team to create all the great pinball games that Stern produces. Much like pinball, it’s a constantly advancing field that gives him plenty of new things to work on. He also assists with much of the physical and electronic documentation that goes into the release of each title.

Ben Heck

Ben Heck

Ben Heck

Ben Heck

The Ben Heck Show*, Spooky Pinball

Video Game Hacker, Pinball Designer, Pinball Software

Ben is a master hacker, engineer and tech hobbyist who has done things that touch nearly every aspect of the show… including naming it in 2002! Ben has hacked consoles to create portable versions of them, created pinball machines that were then manufactured by Spooky Pinball, talked with Dan and Terry Diebold to help fix the Nintendo Playstation Prototype and runs a popular online show, the Ben Heck Show, while he’s at it all!

Tanio Klyce

Tanio Klyce

Tanio Klyce

Tanio Klyce

Backbone Entertainment, Valve Corporation, Stern Pinball*

Senior Software Engineer

Tanio is the Senior Software Engineer at Stern Pinball, which means that he writes the code for some of your favorite Stern games like The Walking Dead and Star Trek! Before working at Stern, he was a Developer at both Valve and Backbone Entertainment working in the video game field.

Mike Kyzivat

Mike Kyzivat

Mike Kyzivat

Mike Kyzivat

Stern Pinball*

Software Designer

Mike is a programmer for Stern Pinball having worked on titles like KISS, WWE and Game of Thrones!

Rick Naegele

Rick Naegele

Rick Naegele

Rick Naegele

Rick is a software engineer who is now a programmer for Stern Pinball, and his first title is the new Iron Maiden machine! Before Stern, Rick worked for WMS Gaming on slot machines, Jardvark Studios for iOS, Chewy Software on Direct 3D games and as a software engineer for EA working on the Xbox, Xbox 360, PS2 and PS3!

Jeremy (Zombie Yeti) Packer

Jeremy (Zombie Yeti) Packer

Jeremy (Zombie Yeti) Packer

Jeremy (Zombie Yeti) Packer

Jeremy, better known as “ZombieYeti” in the pinball world, is an artist working with Stern Pinball.

It has had the pleasure to work with top tier companies such as Nike, Adidas, Reebok, Hasbro, DC Shoe Co., Rossingol, Metal Mulisha, EA, and many more. It has also produced works with many greats in the music world such as Foo Fighters, DeadMau5, Deftones, Kid Rock, Incubus, Paul McCartney, Primus, Faith No More, Melvins and many more. Most recently, it created the art packages for the Ghostbusters, Iron Maiden, Deadpool, and Primus Pinball Machines with Stern Pinball, Inc as a World Class Pinball Illustrator.

Steve Ritchie

Steve Ritchie

Steve Ritchie

Steve Ritchie

Atari Pinball, Williams Pinball, Stern Pinball*

Pinball Game Designer

Steve started by designing pinball machines for Atari before moving to Williams, creating hugely successful machines like Firepower, High Speed, Terminator 2, and Star Trek: The Next Generation. He also worked on arcade video games, and is the voice of Shao Kahn in Mortal Kombat. Recently, he has been working for Stern Pinball, designing hits like Spider-Man, AC/DC, Star Trek and Star Wars!

Adam Ruben

Adam Ruben

Adam Ruben

Adam Ruben

Adam Ruben is a writer, comedian, and molecular biologist.  His most
recent book, Pinball Wizards: Jackpots, Drains, and the Cult of the Silver
Ball, explores the past, present, and future of pinball.  Adam has
appeared on the Food Network, the Travel Channel, the Weather Channel,
Discovery International, Netflix, and NPR; he currently hosts Outrageous
Acts of Science on the Science Channel.  At one time, Adam was the
80th-ranked pinball player in the world.  Then he had kids.

Brett Rubin

Brett Rubin

Brett Rubin

Brett Rubin

Stern Pinball*

Tools development

Brett brings two decades of experience as a software engineer in the video game industry working in tools development, graphical user interface design, and workflow streamlining.

Kevin Schechtel

Kevin Schechtel

Kevin Schechtel

Kevin Schechtel

Kevin Schechtel is Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer at Stern Pinball.

Stern Pinball, Inc. designs and manufactures arcade-quality pinball games. It is the only maker of arcade-quality pinball games in the world and is located just outside Chicago, Illinois. For a quarter of a century Stern has continued to carry the pinball banner and promote the game throughout the world.

Jim Schelberg

Jim Schelberg

Jim Schelberg

Jim Schelberg

PinGame Journal*

Writer, Photographer, Editor

As the owner and creator of the PinGame Journal, Jim Schelberg has been documenting the pinball hobby for more than 150 issues! With information that no one else gets and great photos, the PinGame Journal is a must for anyone who is a fan of the silver ball!

Tim Sexton

Tim Sexton

Tim Sexton

Tim Sexton

Stern Pinball*

Software engineer

Tim was a competitive pinball player who decided to join the team at Stern just a few months ago! As a relatively new hire, we don’t have much to report on Tim yet, but we expect big, awesome things from him in the future in his role as software engineer!

Jim Shird

Jim Shird

Jim Shird

Jim Shird

Alvin G., Williams/Bally, Stern Pinball

Electrical Engineer, Prototype Lab Manager, Game designer

28 Year veteran of the Pinball/Amusement Game Industry, Jim got his start at Alvin G in 1991. Working on games such as Mystery Castle and Pistol Poker before designing Punchy the Clown. In 1994 Jim moved to Williams/Bally where he ran the Manufacturing Lab. He continued to do Electrical Cabling, manager of the prototype lab and was a part of the Pinball 2000 design team. Currently at Stern working on the electrical configurations for games and making sure they are in compliance.

Doug Skor

Doug Skor

Doug Skor

Doug Skor

Stern Pinball, Chicago Gaming Company

International Sales

Doug does some crazy magic, palm grasping, wheeling and dealing to get Stern Pinball machines overseas. In other words, he manages the daily duties for the overseas market.

Gary Stern

Gary Stern

Gary Stern

Gary Stern

Stern Electronics, Data East, Sega Pinball, Stern Pinball*

President*

Gary Stern has been in the pinball industry his entire life, starting by working with Stern Electronics, then moving to Pinstar, Data East, Sega Pinball, and then eventually in 1999 purchasing the company from Sega and renaming it Stern Pinball. Since 1999, Stern Pinball has been the largest pinball manufacturer in the United States, producing multiple incredible machines each year!

Dwight Sullivan

Dwight Sullivan

Dwight Sullivan

Dwight Sullivan

Williams Electronics, Stern Pinball*

Senior game developer

Dwight is currently a senior game designer with Stern Pinball, and has worked on lots of different games for Stern, including being the team leader for games like Pirates of the Caribbean and more! Before that, he worked for Williams Electronics.

Mark Sullivan

Mark Sullivan

Mark Sullivan

Mark Sullivan

Stern Pinball*

General manager

Mark Sullivan is the general manager for Stern Pinball!

Alumni

Below are some of our guests from past shows

 

 

Ernie Hudson

Ernie Hudson

Ernie Hudson

Ernie Hudson

Perhaps best known for his role as Winston Zeddemore in the Ghostbusters series (including voice work for the video game and pinball machine!), Hudson has appeared in countless movies and shows, and is currently producing and starring in The Family Business on BET. Mr. Hudson is expected to join us on Saturday, April 13.

Eugene Jarvis

Eugene Jarvis

Eugene Jarvis

Eugene Jarvis

Atari Pinball, Williams Electronics, Vid Kidz, Midway, Raw Thrills*, Play Mechanix*

Video Game Programmer, Pinball Programmer, Co-Founder of Vid-Kidz, Owner of Raw Thrillz

Eugene designed many landmark arcade video games including Defender, Robotron 2084, Narc, Smash TV, and the Cruis’n series. He also worked in pinball, helping to bring designs like Firepower, Pinbot, Space Shuttle, High Speed and F-14 Tomcat to life. If that isn’t enough, he owns Raw Thrills and Play Mechanix, the premier modern arcade developer with hits such as the Walking Dead, Jurassic Park, Injustice Arcade, the Big Buck Hunter series, and more!

Jeff Lee

Jeff Lee

Jeff Lee

Jeff Lee

Gottlieb

Arcade Video Concept and Design

@!#?@! Perhaps best known as the creator of Q*Bert, Jeff Lee is an artist who created great work for many of Gottlieb’s video arcade games, as well as games on the Macintosh and Genesis. Jeff will be hanging out in the Galloping Ghost Arcade room (3 on the map) throughout the weekend!