CBS marketing guru Ron Scalera dies at 49

Helped launch campaigns for 'CSI' franchise, other series

Ron Scalera, executive vp and creative director of the CBS Marketing Group, died Wednesday in Los Angeles after collapsing during a morning walk. He was 49.

Scalera, who joined CBS in 1997 as senior vp/creative director of advertising and promotion, helped make the Eye "America's Most Watched Network" with the creation of branding and launch campaigns for many successful series, including the "CSI" franchise, "NCIS," "The Big Bang Theory," "The Good Wife" and, most recently, "Undercover Boss." He was promoted to his current position in the CBS Marketing Group in 2004.

"It is a day of profound sadness, shock and loss at CBS," said CBS Corp. president and CEO Leslie Moonves. "We have lost a gifted colleague and a friend whose work graced the air of CBS every day and whose engaging personality touched our lives.

"The creativity, energy and passion Ron put into his work will be sorely missed -- from his brilliant on-air work and 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."

"We are all in shock. Ron's talent, imagination and creativity knew no bounds," CBS Marketing Group president George Schweitzer added. "He blazed an incredible trail in our company and our industry and he leaves a rich legacy."

Scalera was involved with sales promotion, affiliate promotion, network creative services and all special events, including affiliate meetings and upfront presentations. He also oversaw Eyelab, the digital promotion unit that produces and distributes shortform videos to the CBS Audience Network, ultimately reaching hundreds of consumer websites.

A native of Newark, N.J., Scalera joined CBS from Fox, where he served as senior vp on-air promotion from 1994-97. He was part of the network team that was voted "Marketing Team of the Year" in 1996 by Promax International, the association of promotion and marketing professionals in electronic media.

Scalera began his TV career at Fox's WNYW in New York. In 1988, he became a writer/producer at the network before moving up the ranks to vp on-air promotion in 1992 and then senior vp in 1994.

Scalera is survived by his wife, Elizabeth; children Rachel and Michael; his mother, Kathy; and brother, Paul. Arrangements were pending.
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