Craig Kirby
President & CEO

Craig Kirby is a 25-year veteran of the RV Industry Association and long-time senior leader within the organization. Kirby most recently served as senior vice president of government relations and general counsel. In this role, Kirby led several of the organization’s most prominent member service divisions including federal and state government relations, legal, industry standards, as well as the organization’s international business teams. Prior to joining the RV Industry Association in 1994, Kirby was in private practice with a law firm.

Craig spends his free time playing golf and enjoying outdoor activities with his family.

James Ashurst
Executive Vice President

Ashurst currently serves as the Executive Vice President at the RV Industry Association.  In this role, he oversees teams leading the association’s membership, research, finance, IT, events, communications and marketing efforts – including the RV industry’s popular Go RVing campaign.

Prior to joining the association, Ashurst served as vice president of communications for Travel Channel, the cable television network now owned by Warner Bros. Discovery. At Travel Channel, he served as the network’s prime media contact and oversaw all communications strategy, media relations, industry events, and campaign executions to support the key programming, brand, marketing, advertising, and affiliate sales and its aligned businesses. Earlier in his career, he held several communications positions in the broadcast satellite and travel industry.

Curtis Hemmeler
Executive Director, RV Technical Institute and SVP, Standards

Curtis Hemmeler is managing the establishment and launch of the RV Technical Institute’s new headquarters and training facility, as well as managing and executing the strategic business plan. He brings 20 years of professional experience in technical education and training to the RV Technical Institute. Prior to joining the institute, Curt was the vice president of operations and strategy for WyoTech, a division of Zenith Education that trains auto and diesel technicians. In that position, he led a team of over 300 across three locations. He has extensive experience with the sales, marketing, fundraising and developing community partnership. Curt is building a first-class technical and educational program that will ensure that the RV industry’s success continues for generations and generations to come.

Karen Redfern
Senior VP and Chief Marketing Officer, Go RVing

As Chief Marketing Officer, Redfern leads the team of marketing and communications professionals responsible for the industry’s brand marketing campaign, Go RVing, including strategic marketing, social and digital media, traditional advertising, video content creation, public relations, experiential marketing, partnerships, and consumer trends and research.

Prior to joining the RV Industry Association, Karen was an executive with a national real estate franchise providing advertising and public relations programs for franchisees through a separately-funded advertising fund corporation operated much like Go RVing. Her public relations and marketing career spans over three decades with public agencies and private corporations.                                                              

Karen’s passion extends beyond the RV industry where she volunteers with several organizations dedicated to helping women, especially victims of domestic abuse. She is an avid DIYer at home, tackling reno projects big and small and enjoys relaxing time kayaking and biking.

Jason Rano
VP, Government Affairs

As Vice President of Government Affairs, Rano and his team are responsible for promoting and protecting the RV industry by influencing legislative and regulatory policies at the federal and state levels.  

Rano came to the RV Industry Association from Rivian where he was the Senior Partnership Development Manager. In this role, Rano led Rivian’s efforts to deploy electric vehicle chargers on public lands through partnerships with public land agencies, non-profit partners, concessioners, utilities, and others. 

Prior to Rivian, Rano served as the Federal Executive Director for the Chesapeake Bay Foundation, where he developed and implemented federal legislative and regulatory strategy and messaging, including grassroots advocacy, for the largest independent conservation organization dedicated to saving the Chesapeake Bay. Rano also previously served as Vice President, Government Relations for the National Park Foundation, where he was a trusted leader and spokesperson, cultivating relationships with members of Congress, Department of Interior, and National Park Service leadership.

Rano is a passionate New York Mets fan and he and his wife enjoy traveling and experiencing all Washington, DC has to offer.

Bob Schmitt
 & General Counsel

Bob has been in-house legal counsel with the RV Industry Association since 1998. He became the organization’s Vice President and General Counsel in 2019. Before joining the Association, he spent ten years in private legal practice focused primarily on corporate defense matters with the firms Davis, Graham & Stubbs and Devine & Nyquist, where he specialized in complex business litigation, insurance coverage disputes and environmental damage remediation. He graduated from the University of Virginia School of Law in 1989, where he earned a Hardy Cross Dillard Fellowship for Legal Writing. Prior to attending law school, Bob also served on the White House and U.S. Senate staffs, the White House Conference on Small Business, the National Spa & Pool Institute and the National Retail Federation in Washington, DC. He is a 1979 cum laude graduate of Georgetown University.

Outside of the RV Industry Association, Bob loves to travel with his wife, spending time at their getaway place in Florida and is overwhelmingly passionate about the Boston Red Sox.

Bill Baker
Membership and Research

Bill has been an integral part of the RV Industry Association for more than 25 years where he has led marketing, communications, and public relations efforts as well as served on the government affairs teams. Most recently, Baker took over the membership and research departments, centralizing all research and data and elevating the quality and quantity of industry data available to members.

Sharonne Lee
VP, Education & Operations, RV Technical Institute

Sharonne brings more than 30 years of RV industry experience to her new role with the RV Technical Institute. Her experience spans the spectrum and has acquainted her with all aspects of the RV industry ranging from standards inspections and standards development to education, dealer and technician outreach, curriculum development and training. Sharonne developed the first annual Top Tech Challenge in 2017 and looks forward to growing the event as part of the Institute. Sharonne’s new role at the Institute will allow her to pursue her goal of improving the end-user RV experience and professionalizing the field for RV technicians throughout the U.S.

Bryan Ritchie
VP, Standards

Bryan leads the Association's team of full-time inspectors that promote the enhancement of safety by monitoring adherence to the standards adopted by the Board of Directors for the construction of RVs. His team also provides educational resources and hands-on training to manufacturer members. 

In 2021, Bryan joined the Association as Senior Director of Standards. Prior to joining the RV Industry Association, Bryan had an extensive 15-year career with Cummins Inc. in the power generation business serving marine, RV, commercial mobile, and home and small business segments. He broadened his passions of product support, product development, and integration as an application engineer. Bryan later advanced to managing the Consumer Application Engineering team. Throughout the past eight years, he has excelled as a director of sales on the distribution side of the business, leading a sales organization in several segments, growing the OEM and dealer business within the consumer segments in a vast area, while achieving year over year profitable growth.

Bryan graduated from Purdue University with a bachelor’s degree in electrical engineering technology. He enjoys spending time with his family, being involved with his children’s sports and interests, beach days, fishing, camping with a great campfire, and getting in some rounds of disc golf.