DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. -- NASCAR announced that it has hired Mike Zizzo, former vice president of competition public relations at Championship Auto Racing Teams (CART), as a communications manager in its public relations department. Zizzo, 39, ...
DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. -- NASCAR announced that it has hired Mike Zizzo, former vice president of competition public relations at Championship Auto Racing Teams (CART), as a communications manager in its public relations department.
Zizzo, 39, arrives at NASCAR following five years at the open-wheel sanctioning body, where he primarily oversaw all public relations-related activities associated with the competition and driver aspects of the open-wheel sport.
"We are building a strong public relations department at NASCAR and Mike Zizzo is an excellent addition to our team," said Jim Hunter, NASCAR vice president of corporate communications.
"Mike understands racing, is respected by the motorsports media, and fits well into the new NASCAR PR team that now includes Rob Copeland, Danielle Humphrey, Herb Branham, Jeremy Davidson, Owen Kearns and Kate Davis, among others."
Zizzo held three positions during his five-year tenure at CART, beginning in 1996 when he was hired as news manager. Within 10 months of joining CART, he was promoted to director of public relations and in 2000 was named vice president of competition public relations.
His honors during this period included the 1997 Jim Chapman Award, given to the most outstanding public relations representative in the CART series, and entry in the 2000-2001 Strathmore's Who's Who, which is limited to individuals who have demonstrated leadership and achievement in their profession.
Prior to CART, Zizzo served 12 years as a reporter for The Orlando (Fla.) Sentinel, where he covered a variety of professional sports, including NASCAR.
Zizzo, a native of Cheshire, Conn., also worked four years at The Lakeland Ledger (1980-84) while earning his B.S. degree in Journalism at Florida Southern College in Lakeland.