The SBOA Expands Marketing, Sales, And Leadership Teams

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September 21, 2021 – (Farmington Hills, MI) – The Storage Business Owners Alliance [SBOA], the leading national alliance of self-storage owners & operators, has recently made two new hires to its marketing and sales team, and one internal promotion to its leadership team.  Jess Casto joins as Business Development Manager, Alec Cohen joins as Marketing & Operations Manager, and Jessica Johnson was promoted from Director of Marketing and Operations to Vice President of the SBOA.

jess castoCasto began her self-storage journey in 2010 as a manager for a midsize storage operator in York, PA.  In 2018, Casto became the Director of Marketing for the second largest operator in Pittsburgh, PA, and briefly served on the PASSA board prior to relocating to Georgia in 2020.  Just this past June 2021, Casto spoke at the Self-Storage Association national conference in Nashville, TN, and is scheduled to speak at the GASSA conference this October. 

“I am thrilled to a be a part of a company that so many people have known and loved for years. With the explosive growth in self-storage over the last 18 months, I can’t wait to help bring this wonderful alliance to the next generation of self-storge owner and operators.”, said Casto.

alec cohenCohen is a recent graduate of the University of Michigan where he earned his BA in Communication and Media Studies. During Cohen’s studies he served as the Managing Photo and Video Editor for The Michigan Daily. Several notable awards Cohen received the past two years are: Ken Fink Photojournalism Award from The Michigan Daily, 2020, College Coronavirus Coverage Award, Society of Professional Journalists, 2020, and first place for Best Sports Photo from the Michigan Press Association, 2019.

“I am excited to have just graduated college and already be working for a great company and great people, including the SBOA Founder and CEO Ian Burnstein. Ian is a well-known name in the self-storage industry and in the Metro Detroit area. I am excited to work with him and the rest of the SBOA team to help our alliance grow and benefit more members.” said Cohen.

 The SBOA was founded in 2010 by self-storage industry veterans Ian Burnstein and David Levenfeld.  Both Burnstein and Levenfeld saw a need to assist small to mid-size self-storage operators enhance their buying power and save on operational expenses.  By leveraging strength of numbers, the SBOA negotiates exclusive offers with prominent industry service providers through economies of scale.  Eleven years later the organization now has over 16,000 member facilities, including many of the ISS Top 100 Facility Owners, and Top 50 Facility-Management Companies.  The organization continues to actively acquire around 1,500 -2,000 new members annually. 

“I believe our company has been blessed to find such amazing talent during these challenging hiring times.” said SBOA Vice President, Jessica Johnson.  “Due to the aggressive business development strategies in place for the SBOA over the next 18 months we had to source top talent to execute.  We are fortunate to have such a dynamic team focused on producing better results for both our self-storage owner and operator members and service provider partners.” 

Jessica Johnson photoJohnson was promoted from Director of Marketing and Operations to Vice President of the SBOA in March 2021.  During Johnson’s short two-year tenure with the SBOA her team has doubled the company’s social media following, vetted, and onboarded new industry-leading service partners for the SBOA members, executed two virtual events, saved self-storage owners and operators five figures in certain operating expenses, and most recently increased the SBOA membership by a thousand new members within the last thirty days. 

“When self-storage owners and operators need guidance, resources, assistance, or savings on products and services my goal is for the SBOA to be top-of-mind for them”, said Johnson.

For more information about the SBOA, membership, or becoming an alliance partner visit or call 248-254-9000.

Storage Business Owners Alliance
Jessica Johnson – Vice President
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