Jason Merrell, Audio Director: After receiving an AA in Video Production from The American College in London, England and a BFA in Video Production from the University of Nevada, Las Vegas (UNLV), Jason returned to his native Pacific Northwest as a film editor where he worked on several independent productions. His editing work eventually brought him to Los Angeles where he worked at New World Films. Switching gears, Jason joined the team at Talent Group, Inc. as an assistant and was quickly promoted to Audio Director and stayed with the crew when Wes Stevens formed Vox, Inc. where he continues to guide the Agency's competitive reads.
When not directing actors by phone, e-mail or in the booth, attending Client's films, plays and sessions or networking at Industry conventions, workshops and Soirees, Jason can most likely be found on a trendy dance floor, in a dive karaoke bar or any number of Repertory Movie theatres around town.
Originally from Scranton, PA, Matthew Weiss took interest in the entertainment industry at a very early age. Having graduated from Boston University’s College of Communications, he departed his home on the east coast and much like Horatio Alger before him, went west. For the last six years he has worked a multitude of different positions in various corridors around the industry. A lover of all things movie related, Matt enjoys partaking in vigorous discussion on a variety of topics, Hollywood trivia most of all. He looks forward to fully immersing himself in Voice Over now that he has been hired by VOX, Inc.
Growing up in Virginia, Annie knew she wanted to work in entertainment from a young age, singing Mariah Carey covers into her recordable tape player and staging short plays for her family and neighbors. She finally got her chance to move to Southern California when she graduated from William & Mary and moved to San Diego, where she had begun doing stand-up comedy during her internship at a law firm the previous summer. To her parents’ delight, Annie decided not to go to law school, but rather to pursue the elusive entertainment career – every parent’s dream come true. Over the next six years, she gradually transitioned into production and writing, and finally, by the hands of providence, landed at VOX. She didn’t know it until it smacked her in the face, but VOX was exactly what she’d been wishing on all of her eyelashes and 11:11s for over the past year, and she is happy and proud to be a member of the VOX family. With a background in production, acting and writing, Annie comes to VOX with diverse experience from which she has developed a unique and well-rounded insight that is surely be an asset to the agency, clients and buyers.
Philosopher, poet, agent extraordinaire. Jeff might be a couple of these things. Jeff chased the dream of becoming an NBA superstar while attending the University of Puget Sound only to be lured away by the glitz and glamour of Hollywood. Jeff knew the agency life was for him, and more specifically voice over because of the involvement that agents can have in artist's creative process. Soon he found himself specializing in On-Air Promotions and Trailers, and found greener pastures and finally a sense of home at Vox, Inc. Enjoying the challenge of the new frontiers of media, Jeff started the first ever Motion Capture division.
Jeff attributes his negotiation skills to his mother, who was the chief negotiator for her local teachers union. She was a shark, but always remembered that her clients were people, not commodities. Jeff Growing up watching this philosophy, Jeff considers it tantamount to successful negotiation. In his spare time, Jeff can be found surfing along the PCH and wants desperately to find a way to get back into rock climbing.
Wes Stevens has advocated for talent for 17 years. He started in Columbus, Ohio at a small agency booking Ginsu Knife commercials in Tagalog and various other exotic tongues, while also marshalling elves and Sammy Davis, Jr. impersonators to gigs at malls and Shriner rallies. In 1995 Wes joined Talent Group, Inc. (TGI) in Los Angeles as an assistant. Seven years later, he acquired TGI's voice-over department and launched VOX, Inc. His first booking of note was placing David Hyde Pierce in "A Bugs Life" and the journey took him back to Pixar in 2009, placing Ed Asner in "Up". Along that road there have been many campaigns, series, films, fond memories and fun. Wes loves his staff and is excited for the ever growing future of VOX, Inc.
Wes is an Army Brat, growing up in eight States and Karlsruhe, Germany. Wes is an Eagle Scout. His alma mater is The University of Virginia. Mr. Jefferson is one of his heroes. He has completed seven marathons, raising over $60,000 for charities. He lives in West Hollywood with his two dogs, Ms. Penny Fontaine and Mr. Franc N Cents. Wes has a Shaman, a Medicine Woman, an Acupuncturist, a Feng Shui Master and various other interesting folks in his life, and a cape on the back of his office door. He has a penchant for the mystical, whimsical and jazz hands. He likes the color orange and has 38 days worth of music on his computer.
Tom Lawless graduated from Villanova University with a degree in Finance back in 1998. He started out as an assistant in the voice over department at TGI (Talent Group Inc.) in 1999. He worked his way up to an agent late in 2000 and helped start up Vox, Inc. in 2002 with owner Wes Stevens. Over the years he's help build and strengthen Vox in the areas of commercials, animation and video games. Over the last year he's expanded on the success in the video game world by starting a motion capture division at the agency with fellow agent Jeff Jones. Tom is now President of Vox, and a partner.
Tom grew up in Duxbury, MA and has lived in Los Angeles since he moved there in 1999. He has however kept his Boston sports allegiances along the way. If he's not in the office you can probably find him at his local Boston pub catching one of his teams in action (except for football where he's a Giants fan he'll explain once he gets to know you better).
Jerry Ryba was born to be in the business. After high school in Bath Ohio, the gateway to Cleveland, Jerry headed to college, then Hollywood. After securing a bad apartment in Beverly Hills adjacent, Jerry landed his first gig at "The Agency" in 1987. He was an assistant, and then, lickety-split, an agent. The buzz spread about town and Jerry was lured away by Dolores Robinson to try his hand at management. While there he advised oodles of celebrities on their careers, and Wesley Snipes on tax laws. Constantly looking for the next challenging opportunity for himself and for his clients, he's booked theatrical talent at the Gersh Agency, AVO talent at CESD, promo talent at SBV, and now is VP of Endorsement and new Business Development at VOX.
An undying loyalty, an engaging laugh, a never-ending energy, and open ended bar tab, that's what Jerry's friends appreciate about Jerry. He's also got a nun in the family, and a priest, most-likely to cancel out his bad behavior when he checks in with St. Peter. An avid adventurer Jerry's been cross-country seven times, across the globe three times, and can secure a good meal, wherever life finds him. Bottom line, he's more than a good guy, he's an exceptional guy. Known to many as "Rybawitz" and others as "Jelly."
At the young age of 14, Marna Palmer knew she wanted to be an agent because it combined two of her favorite things: entertainment and arguing. After a brief stint working in public affairs in her hometown of Washington, DC, Marna hightailed it out west to pursue her dream. In E! True Hollywood story fashion, she started her agency career in the mailroom and quickly worked her way up to on-camera commercial agent at Abrams Artists. She then moved to Paradigm where she worked in the branding and endorsement division placing celebrity clients in high profile campaigns with popular consumer brands. Preferring the boutique agency environment to the corporate machine she moved to Vox to help expand their celebrity endorsement division.
When not sitting still at her desk Marna advocates for healthy lifestyles by instructing pilates and cycling classes. She also writes a blog called “Imperfectly Fit.”
Ashtyn graduated from Arizona State University with her Bachelors of Science in Communication and certifications in both Entertainment Technology and Marketing. She then came to Los Angeles and, like so many before her, began pursuing her entertainment industry dreams. She has worked in several different facets of the industry: public relations, television development, entertainment marketing, and screenwriting, and she’s excited to bring her experience and knowledge to the next stage of her career: as a member of the VOX team.
When she is not working, Ashtyn is pursuing her love of comedy. She is currently taking classes at both The Second City and Improv Olympic and is a founding member of the sketch troupe-Tentative Comedy and is an acting producer for Victory Lap Variety. She is also a very active pop culture enthusiast and can most commonly be seen in front of the TV. She still hasn’t seen Empire yet, so no spoilers please!