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NASCAR names Brent Dewar as new COO

Dec 11, 2013, 3:07 PM EDT

NASCAR Dewar Hired Auto Racing AP

NASCAR has announced details of an executive restructuring, with former General Motors executive Brent Dewar being named as its new chief operating officer.

Additionally, NASCAR has promoted three members of its executive management. Steve Phelps (senior vice president and chief marketing officer) and Steve O’Donnell (senior vice president of racing operations) have both been elevated to executive vice president, while Gary Crotty (general counsel) has been made chief legal officer.

Dewar spent almost three decades within General Motors and took on many assignments in his tenure there, ranging from global marketing and motorsports/sales operations for multiple brands.

His final assignment at GM was as senior vice president for Global Chevrolet, and he has spent time recently as a consultant for NASCAR on its drive to transform the competition aspect in the areas of rules, penalties, officiating and inspecting.

“In Brent Dewar, we will add a seasoned leader with deep experience in the automotive sector, plus intimate knowledge of and passion for NASCAR as well as various other forms of motorsports,” NASCAR CEO Brian France said in a statement.

“Brent brings creativity, drive, intelligence, operational acumen and a clear understanding of our assets and challenges to NASCAR. He’s a leader who’s naturally collaborative, an essential trait as we work more closely with the OEMs, teams, tracks, broadcast partners and others to grow the sport over the next decade.”

Nate Ryan of USA Today also reports that Dewar was instrumental in GM’s adaptation to digital and social media, as well as the company’s emphasis on green technology.

In an interview with Ryan, Dewar stated that he looks forward to helping attract “more youth and multicultural audiences to the sport” through those avenues.

“We were early adapters at GM to new forms of media as it migrated into digital and social,” Dewar said. “Fans choose multiple forms of media, and we have to be contextually relevant in all of those. It’s a different world today.”

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