It’s hard to say when the world realized NASCAR wasn’t a niche phenomenon. Perhaps it happened in the 1990s, when stock-car racing eclipsed the NFL as the nation’s most popular spectator sport. Or in 2004, when politicos identified “NASCAR dads” as a lucrative electoral demographic. Or maybe this past year, when three NASCAR-themed films scored at the box office. Regardless of when it was, senior VP Paul Brooks was there to see it happen. A 17-year veteran of the company, Brooks set up a Los Angeles NASCAR bureau in 2000 (the first executive-level office for a sports league in the city), a base from which the sporting brand expanded into previously untapped media, including Imax theaters, satellite radio and video-on-demand. “The Los Angeles and entertainment community as a whole has really embraced us,” Brooks says. At the moment, it can hardly afford not to.
P.O.V.: “I am very proud that our operating philosophy remains in bringing tremendous value and service to our business partners and not simply trying to take. Partnership is a powerful word if you live it.”