JAMES CRUZ ( VP Of Marketing and Promotion)
James Cruz, has seen his life go from disadvantaged Brooklyn Boy to Mogul in the Making – Winning is a habit for him because there is no other choice.
When his dreams of playing Major League Baseball suddenly were out of reach because of a serious injury, James had to rethink his goals, his life and a new winning strategy. Early on he knew he had the drive and determination to strive in entertainment, after a year’s time at Mercury Records he went from Assistant to Coordinator for Urban Retail. His tenure at Mercury prepared him for his next move over to Universal Music and Video – while at Universal he added video retail and promotions to his credentials.
The world of opportunity was endless and James honed in on his talents as he went after a career changing position at Reebok International. James joined the Reebok Team at a time where urban sales slumped in the shadow of the gigantic brand Nike was creating. While at Reebok, Mr. Cruz created an immense network of contacts throughout the United States and Internationally, which he utilized to manage a promotional budget in excess of $250,000. James again brought his insight and his never-ending courage to “think out of the box” and assisted in making Reebok become a household choice once again.
In August, 1998, James’ life saw a climax of change – he created his successful marketing consulting company, Cruz Control and accepted a position at Bad Boy Entertainment as National Promotions Director. His talents in Radio, Retail, Artist Development, Brand Management and Project Management were polished to a a level of expertise and professionalism. While most individuals create a career in one area and become experts in that single arena, James’ undeniable command of various fields has made him a force to be reckoned.
Violator’s Chris Lighty and Mona Scott recognized those multi-talents and offered James a home where he has been for almost two years. His accomplishments at Violator have included creating VMG (Violator Marketing Group) – VMG help propel “Blow” (a film by the late Ted Demme) to urban cult status; and being an integral part of the Violator Team which has seen a year of platinum sales, blockbuster movies and groundbreaking endorsement deals.
Mr. Cruz’s accomplishments have been chronicled in E-Mixshow Magazine, Urban Latino Magazine and Billboard Magazine. His expertise has been called upon as a panelist for Mixshow Power Summit, Vibe, Impact and Monitor. Most recently he was voted as one of the 100 Most Powerful Latinos in Entertainment and can often be found serving as an inspirational speaker for young people around the city.
When James is not creating trend setting marketing strategies he can be found at home with his loving and supportive wife, Lymarie and their beautiful daughter Alexys. Mr. Cruz is a huge sports fan and an avid fisherman, who is assured to always reel in the “big fish” in and out of the boardroom…
“Winning is not a sometime thing: it’s an all the time thing. You don’t win once in a while; you don’t do the right thing once in a while; you do them right all the time. Winning is a habit…”