Jon Schwartz: 40 Under 40 2012

Senior Director, Business and Brand Communications, NASCAR

Jon Schwartz is a driving force behind the success of NASCAR. In just under a year, he has played a key role in enhancing the sport’s reputation, having been brought in to transform communications with a new integrated marketing communications model.

He has helped generate powerful headlines and build positive relationships with the media, resulting in wins such as a 50% reduction in "unfavorable" coverage of NASCAR in SportsBusiness Journal from 2010 to 2011 while increasing "favorable" coverage by 69% year over year. He has also played a key role in championing NASCAR’s green credentials and efforts to cut emissions with the introduction of ethanol as a cleaner, greener fuel.

Before joining NASCAR, he was VP of global media relations at Bank of America, where he helped the company rebuild trustwith highly successful community sports initiatives, including volunteering programs with Major League Baseball and the National Football League, and a $1 million education program, which saw 11,000 students learn how science, technology, engineering, and math powered NASCAR.

Other achievements include helping shape MasterCard’s stock market launch as a member of the brand’s marketing leadership team, including leading all communications around the FIFA World Cup sponsorship scandal in the year the company went public. Schwartz’s diverse career has also led him to oversee public relations for billion-dollar brands Skoal and Copenhagen Smokeless Tobacco, and build PR departments at three professional sports teams – two in the New York area, the most saturated US sports market.

"He’s now helping to do the same for NASCAR by championing the league’s newly formed integrated marketing communications model, while playing an integral role in positively changing the culture in the sport around communications," says Brett Jewkes, NASCAR VP and CCO. "Jon is a true leader in the industry."

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