Game Retailers Association Officers
Anna Warren Cebrian - Membership Officer
Anna Warren Cebrian has played board games with her family as far back as she can remember and still loves the classics, like Monopoly, but is also addicted to Splendor. Anna has a BA in Art and an MBA in e-Business, and many years of a background in retail management. She is the Founder and CEO of Illusive Comics & Games, which she started in 2007, after spending a few years as the CEO of a small comics publishing company.
Illusive has been voted best Comic Shop in the San Francisco Bay Area for 2015-2017, and was nominated for an Eisner in 2017. In 2015, Isle of Gamers was opened as a larger and separate space for the Illusive gamers and space for a larger selection of Board and Card Games. This is now the premiere tabletop location in the Silicon Valley. Anna also is the CEO of Illogical Associates, a small publishing company that creates comics and games but mainly loves beautiful artwork.
Robert Placer - Benefits Officer
I have been involved in retail for over thirty-five years, much of it in management at some level. I have vast experience in the toy, game, hobby and craft industry at all levels, i.e. sales, product knowledge, merchandising techniques, purchasing, and more. I have worked for many years, on and off, at my parents’ business, Hobbymasters, one of the largest and longest lasting full line hobby stores in the country. I also worked at Desert Hobbies in Phoenix, AZ; The Hobby Shop in Aberdeen, NJ; Clearwater Hobbies in Clearwater, FL; and was co-owner at The Gamer’s Realm in West Windsor, NJ. In every one of the aforementioned cases, I had some level of control with regards to management duties (purchasing, product analysis, merchandising, etc.).
While at The Gamer’s Realm, I joined GAMA (Game Manufacturers’ Association) in 2000, and in 2002 was elected Vice-Chairman of their Retail Division by my fellow retail store owners. I was active in organizing a seminar schedule track at their trade shows, as well as conducting several of the seminars myself. I also took part as a mentor in their Mentor Business Program, where I successfully assisted other start-up businesses, many of whom are still open today.
In addition to those experiences, I have also spent many years in more corporate retail settings. Prior to opening Family Fun Hobbies, I was a store manager at Five Below.
Prior to Five Below, I was an Assistant Manager at Wal-Mart, where I was able to see the effects of poor customer service, as well as what happens when an employer forgets to treat its employees as people. While it was a negative experience from that aspect, it still reinforced what I already felt I knew, which is to treat all people as you would want to be treated yourself, and you will get better results.
I was a District Manager seasonally for Halloween Adventure, where I oversaw the opening of fifteen stores, and managed six of them. I got to work very closely with townships regarding licenses, permits, and inspections, and learned how to better manage my time in order to properly manage multiple stores.
For almost three years, I was a District Manager Trainee at EB Games, and then at GameStop after the two companies merged. I spent six months running a district of fifteen stores by myself, since there was no District Manager.
Finally, and as mentioned earlier, I have spent much of my life working in some capacity at my parents’ store, Hobbymasters (www.hobbymasters.com). This is a full line hobby store which has been in business for over forty-two years. Their extensive product mix has given me great knowledge into a variety of merchandise lines, as well as the ability to understand when to try new products, even if only for a short period of time. This is most useful in planning for seasonal merchandise, as well as being able to take advantage of the occasional fad products that come along.
Dawn Marinaro - Meetings Officer
As an officer of the GRA, Dawn is very excited to be part of bringing the large number of independant retail stores together with a common voice. She hopes this will allow effective communication across all levels of our industry. As an officer, Dawn is using her fifteen years of experience as an Administrative Assistant to help schedule and organize meetings for members.
Dawn has been active in the retail game industry for twelve years. She is the co-owner of Paddy’s Game Shoppe in St Cloud, MN. Her duties there include event organization and community outreach. She specializes in kids and family games and feels the social value brought to families through gaming is priceless.