National Association of Theatre Owners Elects B&B Theatres’ Bob Bagby as Chair and Harkins Theatres’ Mike Bowers as Vice-Chair

National Association of Theatre Owners (NATO) Leadership - 2023 Elections

The Cinema Foundation Elects Santikos Entertainment’s Tim Handren as Chair While Salt Lake Film Society’s Tori A. Baker Re-Elected as Foundation Vice-Chair

Los Angeles ( October 4, 2023 ) -

The National Association of Theatre Owners (NATO) Executive Board of Directors has elected B&B Theatres President & CEO Bob Bagby as the new NATO Chair and Harkins Theaters President & CEO Mike Bowers as the new NATO Vice-Chair at NATO’s 2023 General Membership & Board Meetings at the Beverly Hilton.

The new NATO Executive Board Chair, Bob Bagby, oversees the largest family owned and operated theater chain in the country. Headquartered in Kansas City (Liberty), Missouri, B&B Theatres will celebrate its 100 th anniversary next year.

“I grew up in the movie theater business,” says Bagby. “When I was starting out, our family had only 17 screens, and now we’re the largest family-run cinema chain with more than 500 screens, so I have a unique perspective on all sides of the business. It’s an honor for me to represent the dedicated and hard-working people of cinemas across the globe and I look forward to serving the interests of our industry as we continue to bring the magic of the movies to the world.”

The new NATO Vice Chair, Mike Bowers, oversees the Scottsdale-based Harkins Theatres circuit and its related businesses. Mike’s 40-year career in business includes 35 years in the motion picture industry beginning his exhibition career with Los Angeles-based Mann Theatres. Joining Harkins Theatres in 1993, Mike is responsible for every aspect of the organization.

“Bob Bagby is one of those people whose optimistic vision and positivity are contagious, and Mike Bowers’ passion for the industry and strategic insights are well-known,” says NATO President & CEO Michael O’Leary. “It’s a pleasure to work with these innovative leaders with decades of experience between them, and I am confident they will help steer our great industry to even greater heights.”

Also, at the NATO 2023 General Membership & Board Meeting, Santikos Entertainment CEO Tim Handren was elected Chair of The Cinema Foundation, while Salt Lake Film Society’s Tori A. Baker was re-elected Vice Chair.

Tim Handren leads the San Antonio-based Santikos during a time of significant growth or the cinema, entertainment center and real estate company, operating 27 venues in the Southeastern US, in addition to a real estate portfolio of 1.2 million square feet. As a strategic advisor and serial entrepreneur, Handren has helped expand and grow dozens of companies and was the COO at USAA, a Fortune 100 financial services company. Handren will continue to serve on the Executive Board of NATO.

Tori Baker is the President and CEO of the Salt Lake Film Society (SLFS) and cofounded the National Arthouse PSA Project, the technology platform @homeArts, and MAST (Media Accelerator Studio). She has been named by Celluloid Junkie as one of the Top 50 Women in Global Cinema.

“Both Tim and Tori have a unique understanding of the cultural and economic impact of movie theaters and their importance to the communities at large,” says The Cinema Foundation Executive Director Bryan Braunlich. “Along with the other Board members, Tim and Tori will help lead The Cinema Foundation in its mission to advance the future of the moviegoing experience.”

The Executive Board of Directors is the governing body of NATO, comprised of 20 leaders in the domestic exhibition industry. The four volunteer officers of the association are elected from and by the members of the Executive Board.

NATO’s structure is designed to encourage member participation in the activities, benefits and deliberations of the association. An Advisory Board, comprised of more than 100 representatives of the domestic and international exhibition community, deliberates on exhibition issues, and makes policy recommendations to the Executive Board of Directors.

About NATO
The National Association of Theatre Owners is the largest exhibition trade organization in the world, representing more than 34,000 movie screens in all 50 states, and more than 28,000 additional screens in 88 countries worldwide.

Headquartered in Washington, D.C., with a second office in Hollywood, California, NATO represents its members in the heart of the nation’s capital as well as the center of the entertainment industry. From these vantage points, NATO helps exhibition influence federal policymaking and work with movie distributors on all areas of mutual concern, from new technologies to legislation, marketing, and First Amendment issues. For more info, visit

About The Cinema Foundation
The Cinema Foundation is a donor-supported 501(c)(3) charitable non-profit dedicated to promoting the essential cinema exhibition industry by developing future diverse workforces and growing moviegoing communities through research, education and philanthropy.

Since March 2022, the Cinema Foundation’s mission is dedicated to shaping the future of the great collective experience of moviegoing and the cinema industry. It works to support and impact the health of the cinema sector both in the short term and for years to come, while continuously expanding its contributions to the magic of moviegoing. The Cinema Foundation builds on the National Association of Theatre Owners’ mission and relationships and expands NATO’s impact in ways that help individual employees and companies as well as the industry as a whole. We are the Foundation of a great industry. For more info, visit