Owner & Publisher, Tracy C. Ertl, names Travis J. Vanden Heuvel CEO
2018 marks the ten year anniversary of TitleTown Publishing. From my wish made on Olympic ice at the 2006 Winter Olympic Games in Italy, to our most recent release of “Wish Man,” the memoir of Make-A-Wish® founder and creator, Frank Shankwitz, I’ve worked tirelessly to grow TitleTown into a nationally recognizable brand. Over the better part of a decade, we’ve dedicated ourselves to providing a platform whereby our authors can share “stories that inspire.” What was once a one-woman-show that had me working out of my home in Green Bay, WI, has grown into a multi-national publishing house with satellite offices around the world. Our team, now comprised of over 25 talented men and women, is the lifeblood of my company and I’m so very blessed to have been allowed, by the grace of God, to build something that can move people and attract great talent.
Second only to telling powerful stories in authentic ways, my top priority as the owner, publisher, and founding CEO of TitleTown Publishing is to ensure the long-term sustainability of the organization and to develop the strengths and talents of our teammates. To that end, I’m both excited and proud to announce that I’ve named Travis J. Vanden Heuvel the new Chief Executive Officer of TitleTown Publishing. Founding CEOs possess certain traits and abilities often different from the abilities held by CEOs tasked with scaling those established, growing companies. It takes courage to understand the differences and then act on that knowledge. I do and I am!
Travis is the owner, publisher, and co-founder of Peregrino Press – a Catholic publishing company in De Pere, WI – and co-author of the #1 Amazon bestselling book, To Heaven & Back: The Journey of a Roman Catholic Priest. When Travis joined TitleTown Publishing in 2017 as our President & Chief Operations Officer, Peregrino Press became TitleTown’s first imprint. In addition to the creative control he has over Peregrino Press, Travis has been working on operational and business development activities for TTP. When we married our resources and distribution pipeline with Travis’ retail expertise and event-centered programing model, I saw the benefits of our partnership immediately. Over the last couple of years, it’s become increasingly clear to me that Travis is qualified and credentialed to scale the business I created and built, in a sustainable, profitable way.
Outside of his work in publishing, Travis is an active member in the local community. Travis is involved in his parish, St. Norbert College Parish, where her serves on the Pastoral Leader’s Senior Leadership Team and is the co-chair of the Parish Council. Travis also serves on the board of directors for Willow Tree Cornerstone Child Advocacy Center (a division of Family Services that provides services to abused children) and myTeamTriumph WI (an organization that facilitates and fosters relationships with the differently-abled). Along with his wife, Jessica, Travis was a member of the Campaign Cabinet, and chair of the young-alumni committee, for Campaign St. Norbert: Full Ahead - a successful capital campaign that raised over $100 million for their alma mater, St. Norbert College.
In his new role as CEO, Travis has earned my trust to manage TitleTown’s day-to-day operations. He’s been charged with doubling our revenues year-over-year, for the next three years. Travis’ growth strategy consists of both organic, grassroots initiatives that will bring in new authors and content, as well as a healthy appetite for the acquisition of content and smaller publishing houses. Our combined vision for the future of TitleTown is bold, combining elements of a conventional, main-stream publishing strategy with more aggressive, pro-active sales and marketing-focused initiatives.
Since signing on at TitleTown, Travis has published five titles with Peregrino Press: God Incidents, The Meadow, Wiskalo Chookalo, The Magic Necklace of Al-Andalus, and One More Day. In the coming months, PP will be releasing A Walk in the Dark and God Incidents II. As our COO, Travis acquired several properties that I've been very proud to publish: Wish Man, Outside the Wire in Blue, The Power of Legacy, True Blue III, Blue Lives Matter NYC, Life in a Word, and Desperate Parallels (under development). Travis also contributed deeply to the operational, sales, and marketing efforts for properties that I acquired: Red Mittens, Slave, Journey of the Heart, Kindness in a Scary World, Blue Lives Matter: In the Line of Duty, and Win From Within.
Having Travis assume the role of CEO will allow me to still maintain control as owner and publisher, but free me to develop content, ghostwrite, enjoy the company I built, and work without guilt in the public safety field - at BCPSC 911 and teaching for APCO. I also hope to have more time to focus on my beautiful family and friends.
TitleTown Publishing is strong, and we're growing stronger each and every day. Please join me in congratulating Travis and wishing him well in this new endeavor.
Tracy C. Ertl
Owner & Publisher