Ron Scalera, a longtime marketing and promotion executive for CBS, died Wednesday near his home in Encino. He was 49.
The cause of death was not immediately clear. Scalera was believed to have collapsed while walking his dog in the morning.
Scalera, exec veep and creative director of CBS Marketing Group, was highly regarded as a TV marketing ace. He was well-liked throughout CBS and by many of the producers who worked with him on promo campaigns. He spearheaded the tubthumping for such recent CBS hits as “Undercover Boss,” “The Big Bang Theory,” “NCIS” and “The Good Wife.”
“It is a day of profound sadness, shock and loss at CBS,” said Leslie Moonves, prexy and CEO of CBS Corp. “The creativity, energy and passion Ron put into his work will be sorely missed — from his brilliant on-air work to upfront presentations to new and innovative forms of promotion. The level of admiration and respect he has here is exceeded only by the number
of close friends, who will remember a wonderful person who did everything at full speed, energizing and inspiring those around him… One of the true good guys has left us far too early and we grieve with all our hearts.”
George Schweitzer, prexy of CBS Marketing Group, lauded his colleague’s skills as a marketer and the strength of his character.
“Ron’s talent, imagination and creativity knew no bounds. He blazed an incredible trail in our company and our industry and he leaves a rich legacy,” Schweitzer said. “His fierce devotion to his job, his family and his friends touched us all.”
Scalera’s longevity at Fox and CBS made him among the most well-known marketing execs in the TV biz. His sudden death stunned his many friends and colleagues at other nets and studios. He was fondly remembered for being collaborative with creative talent and outside execs, even when he didn’t have to be.
“Ron was a creative, energetic marketer — a great guy to work with,” said Lisa Gregorian, exec veep of worldwide of marketing for Warner Bros. TV Group. “He was passionate, collaborative and a true professional.”
Scalera joined CBS from Fox in 1997, and was promoted to exec VP rank in 2004. He spearheaded creative for the network and its promo partnerships with outside entities. He also worked closely with CBS affiliate station managers on promo initiatives and consulted on marketing matters for other Eye divisions.
Before CBS, Scalera spent nearly a decade at Fox, joining during the network’s infancy in 1988. He rose through the marketing ranks to oversee the creative direction for all of Fox’s on-air promo and image campaigns.
Born in Newark, N.J., Scalera was a graduate of the state’s William Patterson U. He began his TV career as a writer-producer at Fox O&O WNYW New York.
Survivors include his wife, Elizabeth, and two children, Rachel and Michael.