Palm Beach Int'l Raceway news 2009-06-29

Sports-Marketing Pioneer Howard Wishner Joins Palm Beach International Raceway as Chief Communications/Marketing Officer JUPITER, FL (June 26, 2009) -- Howard Wishner, one of the nation's premier sports and beverage-marketing executives, ...

Sports-Marketing Pioneer Howard Wishner Joins Palm Beach International Raceway as Chief Communications/Marketing Officer

JUPITER, FL (June 26, 2009) -- Howard Wishner, one of the nation's premier sports and beverage-marketing executives, has joined Palm Beach International Raceway (PBIR) as Chief Communications/ Marketing Officer.

Wishner, who earned national acclaim for orchestrating numerous 'firsts' in the sports-marketing arena, such as connecting Fortune 100 companies with major events like the Indianapolis 500, will oversee and manage all aspects of the organization's sales, marketing and communications, both for the newly re-designed, state-of-the-art, multi-track venue track, as well as for the Palm Beach Driving Club (PBDC), PBIR's newly-founded, exclusive driving club.

In this role, Wishner brings more than 30 years of integrated communications and marketing experience to the raceway, with a broad skill set that encompasses all aspects of marketing, brand identity programs, promotions and special events. His core strength is building brands by using marketing and communications initiatives to help sell them within the marketplace.

A master in pioneering branding initiatives, Wishner has developed innovative marketing campaigns for national and worldwide sponsored events including Championship Auto Racing Teams (now IRL), NASCAR, the NFL, NBA, MLB, the World Wrestling Federation (now WWE), Olympics and X Games.

He has developed and implemented strategic sales and marketing campaigns in a variety of markets including packaged goods, food and beverage, and sports and entertainment, resulting in increased sales and stock surges, and ensuring maximum return on investment.

Prior to joining Palm Beach International Raceway, Wishner held the position of Senior Vice President of Promotions, Marketing and Special Events at the National Beverage Corp. in Ft. Lauderdale, Florida, where he was tasked with developing a new marketing department designed to integrate programs between sales, marketing and distributors that supported new innovation products, as well as the company's existing portfolio.

His role also included identifying sporting events and signing athletes as spokespersons to support the individual brands, exponentially furthering existing media coverage, events and advertising.

Wishner's extensive career in integrated communications, marketing, and brand development began at Ringling Brothers Barnum and Bailey Circus. After roles at several major agencies in New York, he launched his privately owned public relations firm, Wishner Communications, Ltd. With clients that included General Motors, Jeep Eagle, Pepsi, Major League Baseball, National Football League, Championship Auto Racing, the Teams Pro Football, Basketball Hall of Fame, Indian Motorcycle, V2K and Momints, his firm was one of the first agencies to recognize the importance of what is now called 'sports marketing.'

Wishner has also served as Senior Vice President of Corporate Communications at the South Beach Beverage Company (SoBe), where he developed and implemented numerous integrated strategies to support a lifestyle product that would eventually make history in its category. His experience with SoBe led to a number of other opportunities within the beverage industry, where he helped expand numerous brands, including Brazil Gourmet, IZZE Beverage and FUZE Beverage.

"Throughout all his successes, Howard always remained a performance car and race enthusiast," says Ron Dixon, president and COO of Palm Beach International Raceway. "This is an excellent opportunity to bring someone onboard who not only has a long track record of developing and implementing integrated communications strategies, but is an actual pioneer in the arena of sports marketing. He is a perfect fit for this environment."

"I've always had a passion for motorsports," adds Wishner. "My first car was a Firebird 400, and I've owned nothing but performance vehicles and motorcycles from then on. To be in a position where I can bring my core skill set in marketing and communications to a racing venue is the perfect marriage for me. I look forward to furthering PBIR as one of the world's premier motorsports venues."

Wishner earned his undergraduate degree at Florida State University and the University of South Carolina, where he also did post-graduate work. He is frequent speaker on sports marketing, and is currently involved, both locally and nationally, with the Make-a-Wish Foundation.

-credit: pbir

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