The Health & Fitness Association Elects New Board Members

The Health & Fitness Association (formerly IHRSA), a global community of industry leaders, elected five new board members on March 8 at its annual meeting, which occurred at the 2024 IHRSA Convention & Trade Show March 6-8, 2024, at the Los Angeles Convention Center in Los Angeles, California.

Board members elected at the meeting were:

  • Ahmar Azam, founder and CEO of TriFit
  • Deborah Fiorella, chief technology and digital officer at 24 Hour Fitness
  • Richard Idgar, COO of EoS Fitness
  • Mel Kleist, CEO of East Bank Club 
  • Matthew Stevens, president and CEO of Bay Club Company

Ahmar Azam founded TriFit in January 2020, just prior to the start of the COVID pandemic. Prior to that, he served as CFO and then CEO of Leejam Sports Company. He also spent time at Obeikan Investment Group; ICS Risk Advisors; National Bank of Pakistan, Americas; Centerline Corp USA; Life Sciences Research, USA; and Deloitte LLP, USA. 

Deborah Fiorella has been with 24 Hour Fitness since June 2021. Prior to that, she was senior vice president of IT at NBC Universal Theme Parks & Resorts for eight year and vice president of enterprise planning and operations at EarthLink for 15 years. 

Richard Idgar’s passion for health and fitness began in 2003 when he started a nine-year collaboration with Gold’s Gym in Hollywood, California. He then joined the Equinox Fitness team where he oversaw the Equinox Sports Club West. Richard joined EoS Fitness in 2015 as the brand was just starting out. The brand is now at nearly 100 locations, and he serves as its current COO.

Mel Kleist has been with East Bank Club since 2015, starting as executive director prior to his role as CEO. His previous fitness industry experience includes 10 years as a regional general manager at Xport Fitness. Mel is a founding board member of the Illinois Fitness Alliance, and he is on the advisory board for The Habitat Company.

Matthew Stevens became president and CEO of The Bay Club Company in 2008 after Bay Club purchased Spectrum Clubs where he was president and CEO. Prior to working for Spectrum, Matthew had held the role of senior vice president of sales and marketing at Club Sports International and general manager at New York Health & Racquet Club.

“This is a stellar group of new board members with a real passion for the fitness industry,” Health & Fitness Association President & CEO Liz Clark said. “I’m looking forward to getting fresh insights from each of them and mining their experience as we continue the evolution of our association.”

The new board members will begin their four-year terms on July 1, 2024. A new chair and treasurer will be elected at the June board meeting.