Meet The Team

  • Parks Associates, About Parks Associates

    Twitter ID: @ParksAssociates

    Parks Associates is an internationally recognized market research and consulting company specializing in emerging consumer technology products and services. Founded in 1986, Parks Associates creates research capital for companies ranging from Fortune 500 to small start-ups through market reports, primary studies, consumer research, custom research, workshops, executive conferences, and annual service subscriptions.

    The company's expertise includes new media, digital entertainment and gaming, home networks, Internet and television services, digital health, mobile applications and services, consumer electronics, energy management, and home control systems and security.

    Each year, Parks Associates hosts industry webcasts, the CONNECTIONS™ Conference Series, and Smart Energy Summit: Engaging the Consumer.

  • Tricia Parks, Founder and CEO

    Tricia Parks is the founder, chairman, and CEO of Parks Associates, a market analyst and research company dedicated to providing meaningful information and counsel to companies offering technology-based products aimed at improving people's lives. She presents worldwide on consumer trends, market requirements, and industry structure, with an eye to meshing visionary and progressive ideas to consumer needs and wants.

    Parks Associates hosts CONNECTIONS™, an international conference and showcase for the digital home hosted in the U.S., and CONNECTIONS™ Europe, hosted in Europe and focusing on market opportunities for digital products and services in the many nations of Europe. Tricia Parks also developed the Relevancy Theory, a forecasting model for sales across a broad range of digital electronic products and services.

    Tricia has served on a variety of industry boards including CEA's Home Networking and Information Technology division, the National Research Council's Committee for a Partnership to Assess Technology for Housing (PATH), the AMD Board of Global Consumer Advocacy, and CABA. Tricia Parks has a BA from Sweet Briar College and graduate studies from the University of Texas.

  • Elizabeth Parks, President

    Twitter ID: @elizparks

    As President, Elizabeth leads all teams within Parks Associates. Elizabeth oversees all research for the company and directs the integrated strategic communications plan for Parks Associates, including advertising, public relations, and marketing campaigns for research and events. Elizabeth is the key organizer for all of Parks Associates' events, including CONNECTIONS™, and she supports Parks Associates' Business Development Team with prospective client searches, overall support, and maintenance of Parks Associates' databases.

    Elizabeth joined Parks Associates on a full-time basis in 1998 after graduating from the University of Texas at Austin with a BA in psychology.

  • Research Team

  • John Barrett, Director of Consumer Analytics

    Twitter ID: @ParksData

    John Barrett leads Parks Associates questionnaire development and specializes in survey design that elicits accurate, insightful, and actionable data. He regularly advises companies across consumer technology markets on research methodology and business strategy and has authored dozens of industry reports. He also teaches college-level courses on research methods and other topics at LeTourneau University.

    He holds a PhD in Religion, Politics, and Society from Baylor University, an MA in international economics from the Johns Hopkins University: School of Advanced International Studies (SAIS) and a BS in international affairs from Georgetown University.

  • Alayna Bryant, Intern

    Alayna joined Parks Associates as a research intern shortly before graduating from Southern Methodist University with BAs in Economics, World Languages, and Economic Sociology. Prior to joining the team at Parks Associates, she worked with an intern team completing research on market drivers and industry outlook for a growing Dallas company.

  • Steve Hawley, Contributing Analyst

    Steve Hawley is publisher of Piracy Monitor (, to foster awareness and better understanding of the technical and business concerns associated with the theft of video content and services. He also is founder of tvstrategies, which supports video service providers and their technology suppliers in delivering premium video programming to any connected consumer screen.

  • Kristen Hanich, Senior Analyst

    Twitter ID: @KristenAtParks

    INDUSTRY EXPERTISE: Consumer electronics, mobility services and devices, connected health and wellness

    Kristen Hanich heads Parks Associates' consumer electronics and mobility research, with expertise in other verticals including connected cars, mobile networking, healthcare, wellness, and independent living. She leads a mix of custom and syndicated research projects throughout the year, with a focus on major players and emerging trends. Kristen specializes in bridging the gap between data-driven and narrative approaches to understanding the consumer markets via a mix of qualitative and quantitative research approaches.

    Kristen has dual master's degrees in applied anthropology and public health from the Universities of North Texas in Denton and Fort Worth. She earned her BSc in health at the University of Texas at San Antonio and has a graduate certificate in Geographic Information Systems.

  • Keshav Jaiswal, Consumer Insights Analyst II

    Keshav studies market trends and consumer behaviors related to the use of smart home and entertainment technologies. Keshav’s work with the Consumer Analytics team includes primary and secondary research, where he focuses on finding data-driven solutions from syndicated and custom survey data.

    Keshav Jaiswal graduated from University of Texas at Dallas with a Master of Science degree in Business Analytics specializing in Marketing and Research. He also holds a bachelor’s degree in Computer Science and Engineering.

  • Yilan Jiang, Director

    Twitter ID: @YilanJiang

    Yilan leads Parks Associates' Consumer Analytics team and manages numerous primary research and custom research across all areas of the consumer IoT, including consumer electronics, entertainment services, voice assistants, and connected home solutions. Yilan conducts consumer behavior analysis to understand market trends, predict consumer demand, and provide quantified market intelligence that guides strategic business decisions. Yilan leads research that provides rich insight into consumer preference and deep analysis of competitive strategies and business models.

    Yilan earned her MA in economics from University of Texas at Arlington and BA in economics in Nankai University, P.R. China.

  • Jennifer Kent, Senior Director

    Twitter ID: @JenniferMKent

    INDUSTRY EXPERTISE: Connected Health, Connected Home Technologies and Services, Connected Entertainment Products and Services

    As Senior Director, Jennifer manages the research department and Parks Associates' process for producing high-quality, relevant, and meaningful research. Jennifer also leads and advises on syndicated and custom research projects across all connected consumer verticals and guides questionnaire development for Parks Associates’ extensive consumer analytics survey program. Jennifer is a certified focus group moderator, with training from the Burke Institute.

    Jennifer earned her PhD in religion, politics, and society and an MA in church-state studies from Baylor University. She earned her BA in politics from the Catholic University of America in Washington, DC.

  • Amanda Kung, Intern

    Amanda joined Parks Associates as a research intern after graduating from Brown University with a BA in Economics in 2020. She has experience in consulting, influencer marketing, and economic research with companies located in Dallas, California, South Korea, and Brazil. At Parks Associates, she assists with investigating trends, market dynamics, and outcomes for the connected home technologies and services marketplace.

  • Weijun Lee, Research Associate

    Prior to joining Parks Associates in November 2018, Weijun was a Top Strategic Technology Executive of ZTE TX Inc., Milpitas, CA; in the CTO Group of ZTE Corporation, Shenzhen, China; and a system architect in Santera Systems Inc., Plano, TX, and in Nortel Networks, Ottawa, Canada. He has 25+ years of extensive experience in R&D and global technical marketing in the areas of telecommunications and IP networks, cloud computing, computer security, IPTV/OTT, smart home, artificial intelligence, and blockchain. He has moderated and spoken in prestigious industry forums, including Mobile World Congress, Broadband World Forum, and TV Connect.

    Weijun has a master's degree in Computer Science from the University of Toronto, Toronto, Canada, and a bachelor's degree in Computer Science and Engineering from the University of Science and Technology of China, Hefei, China. He currently holds eight US/PCT patents in methods and systems.

    INDUSTRY EXPERTISE: Blockchain, AI, Cybersecurity, IoT, Smart Home, IPTV/OTT, 5G, Cloud Computing

  • Steve Nason, Research Director

    Twitter ID: @SteveAtParks

    INDUSTRY EXPERTISE: Entertainment content and services, consumer behavior on emerging technology markets

    Steve is a research director at Parks Associates, specializing in entertainment content and services. He brings over fifteen years experience in a variety of market research and marketing strategy roles including several in the emerging technology and media space.

    Steve earned both his BS in Telecommunication with a concentration in Business and his MA in Mass Communications from the University of Florida.

  • Brad Russell, Research Director, Connected Home

    Twitter ID: @bradrusselltech

    INDUSTRY EXPERTISE: Connected home technologies and services, IoT data privacy and security, home networking, insurtech, connected health, housing innovation, home energy management

    Brad leads Parks Associates’ connected home team, exploring leading-edge issues converging in the connected home—smart home devices and services, residential security, home networking, IoT data privacy and security, data-driven applications, and platform services. Brad’s custom research work includes market sizing and forecasts, ecosystem and competitive landscapes, channel analyses, and go-to-market strategies.. Brad balances the art and science of market research to generate insights that lead to more astute business strategy and value-generating practices. He has a background in marketing communications, technology startups, and online media.

    Brad received his Bachelor of Science degree in advertising and marketing from the University of Texas at Austin. He also earned a M.Div. and a D.Min. with concentrations in ethics and cross-cultural collaboration.

  • Patrice Samuels, Senior Analyst

    Twitter ID: @PatriceatParks

    INDUSTRY EXPERTISE: Smart home products and services, technical support services, consumer experience

    Patrice covers smart home products and services and leads Parks Associates Smart Home Tracker product, keeping clients informed of industry developments and competitive shifts across more than 10 smart home product markets. She also leads digital home technical support services with a focus on market trends, business models, and provider strategies. Patrice manages custom research projects and strategy workshops that help companies understand the consumer experience in the connected home.

    Patrice earned her MBA from Texas A&M University at College Station and BSc in Psychology from the University of the West Indies.

  • Xiaofan Tan, Consumer Insights Analyst I

    Xiaofan Tan is a member of the Consumer Analytics team. She researches and analyzes various kinds of consumer data to explain market trends, predict how consumers will react to innovations, and recommend strategies for success in a changing business environment.

    Xiaofan is completing her MS in Business Analytics degree from University of Texas at Dallas. She also earned her BS in Business Administration from University of La Verne.

  • Dr. Kenneth Wacks, Contributing Analyst

    Dr. Wacks has been a pioneer in establishing the home systems industry and a management advisor to 150 clients worldwide. His business spans home and building systems, utility customer services, and digital entertainment networks (including HDTV and IPTV). Clients seek his help to locate strategic business partners, financing, and new customers. He also provides due-diligence for investors and expert witness services for litigants. Please visit for information about clients and projects.

    He was appointed by the United States Department of Energy to the 13-member GridWise Architecture Council to develop smart grid strategies for reliable and efficient distribution of electricity. The Consumer Electronics Association chose Dr. Wacks to chair the international committee (ISO/IEC) establishing world standards for home and building systems and energy management. In addition, he has written American National Standards in home automation.

    Dr. Wacks chairs the Editorial Advisory Board of the CABA magazine iHomes & Buildings (available at and is a featured contributor under the byline “Ken Wacks’Perspectives.” Dr. Wacks received his Ph.D. from MIT as a Hertz Fellow and studied at the MIT Sloan School of Management.

  • business development

  • Elizabeth Capece, Strategic Account Manager- Events & Marketing Services

    Elizabeth joins Parks Associates with over a decade of sales and account management experience with SMB, mid-market and enterprise clients in software technology, hospitality and higher education industries. Elizabeth works closely with the marketing and operations team and handles all in person and virtual event sponsorship and custom marketing opportunities for Parks Associates.

    Elizabeth has an Event Management degree from the University of Central Florida’s Rosen College of Hospitality Management.

  • Julie Kistler, Strategic Account Manager

    Twitter ID: @JulieatParks

    Julie Kistler brings to Parks Associates over 20 years of sales and marketing experience across a diverse portfolio of vertical markets. Julie works diligently with clients to identify and deliver the right market research products and services to support their business initiatives.

    Julie graduated from the University of Colorado at Colorado Springs with a BS in Business Administration with an emphasis in Marketing. Julie is also a Veteran of the United States Navy.

  • Elissa Mancini, Strategic Account Manager

    Elissa Mancini joined Parks Associates in 2019 after nearly a decade of providing software and IT consulting services. As a member of the business development team, Elissa strives to meet client need with energy and accuracy. Elissa graduated from Southern Methodist University in 2004 with a B.A. in Political Science.

  • Jason Paris, Director, Business Development

    Twitter ID: @paris4jason

    Jason Paris joined Parks Associates in 2007 as an analyst studying international telephone, cable, and satellite providers and is now a member of the business development team.

    Jason graduated from the University of Texas at Austin with a BA in psychology and government. After working for the Texas House of Representatives, Jason spent the previous seven years in New York City working with portable and enterprise healthcare technologies.

  • marketing

  • Hailey Laughlin, Marketing Manager

    Twitter ID: @LaughlinHailey

    Hailey's primary role at Parks Associates is assisting with social media, event attendee marketing, and event logistics. In addition, Hailey contributes to marketing efforts including new marketing initiatives for products and services, press outreach, and webcasts.

    With over six years of digital marketing experience, Hailey previously served as a marketing professional in the education, immersive entertainment, retail, and building materials industries. In her previous role, she was the Marketing Specialist for a building materials representative group. Hailey has a BA in communication from Dallas Baptist University.

  • Susan Minner, Office Manager

    Susan joined Parks Associates in 2017 as Office Manager. She manages the accounting, human resources, and benefit administration tasks. She also provides administrative support for the sales and marketing teams.

    Prior to joining Parks Associates, Susan served in various positions and has 20-plus years accounting firm experience. These positions include office manager and firm administrator for local CPA firms, and in her last position, she served as the office/accounting manager for a publishing company in Dallas, Texas.

  • Jay Shelton, Creative Director

    Twitter ID: @JayWShelton

    Jay joined Parks Associates in 2015 as the Creative Director and develops the creative aspects of Parks Associates collateral, presentation materials, and print and digital materials for the firm's hosted events as well as syndicated and custom research. Jay creates and sets the look and direction for all of Parks Associates brands.

    With over 25 years in the graphic design field, Jay brings experience from a variety of industries to Parks Associates, including healthcare, bar code and software/hardware, hotel management, building materials, and beauty supply. Jay graduated from the University of North Texas with a BFA in graphic design with a concentration in illustration.

  • Mindi Sue Sternblitz-Rubenstein, Senior Director, Marketing

    Twitter ID: @mindisue00

    Mindi Sue plays a primary role in Parks Associates event management, including five Parks Associates-hosted events and the outside events the company participates in. Mindi Sue is responsible for strategic planning and marketing of Parks Associates’ 6 hosted executive conferences. Mindi Sue is responsible for coordinating speaker relations activities for Parks Associates’ conferences and webcasts, including managing all proposals to speak, speaker communication, logistics, and coordination for national and international events and over fifty outside industry events that the Parks Associates analyst team participates in.

    Mindi Sue oversees Parks Associates’ public relations efforts including social media, press outreach and event attendance, analyst relations, training, executive communication, and corporate events. As a tenured executive and company-wide leader, she continuously supports all divisions of the company with her enthusiasm and strives to improve company efficiency, creativity, and cohesiveness.

    Prior to joining Parks Associates in early 2008, Mindi Sue worked with ad agencies, start-ups, consulting firms, retail stores, nonprofit organization, and real estate companies in designing profitable sales and creative marketing programs. Mindi Sue has an MBA from University of Texas at Dallas and a Bachelor of Business Administration in Management Information Systems from Texas A&M University.

  • Nick Thrash, Director, Operations

    Twitter ID: @NickThrash1

    Nick's primary duties are handling the logistics for Parks Associates’ events and marketing efforts. He organizes and maintains vendor relationships for all trade shows that Parks Associates participates in, including CEDIA and The Consumer Electronics Show. Nick provides logistical support to all sponsors and speakers at events and workshops hosted by Parks Associates. Nick is the primary contact for event sponsors regarding exhibitor logistics and fulfillment of sponsorship benefits at CONNECTIONS™. In addition, Nick manages the distribution of Parks Associates’ research materials to individual and Client Service accounts.

    Prior to joining Parks Associates, Nick worked with a full-service advertising agency and graphic design firm. Mr. Thrash has a BBA in marketing from Texas Tech University.

  • Rosey Ulpino, Marketing & Public Relations

    Twitter ID: @RosimelyU

    Rosey’s (Rosimely) primary role at Parks Associates is being the primary point person for the company’s public relations outreach and response as well as managing the company’s email marketing strategy and schedule. Rosey also works closely with members of the Marketing team on additional tasks such as social media, content marketing, event attendee marketing, and other marketing initiatives for Parks Associates events and research products and services.

    Prior to joining Parks Associates, Rosey worked as a Community Relations Specialist in the healthcare industry by managing social media, developing blog content, and creating marketing graphics and designs. She also has previous experience in marketing agency and non-profit communications. She graduated Cum Laude with a BS in Communications with a focus in Public Relations from the University of North Florida in 2018.

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