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IRVINE, Calif. - Mazda North American Operations (MNAO) today announced the appointment of Ron Stettner to the position of Vice President, Sales.  Also announced was that Eric Johnston, who previously held that position, will replace Nobuyuki "Nick" Sato as Vice President, Strategic Planning & Market Integration; Sato has been appointed to the newly created position of MNAO Vice President on assignment as Assistant to the President, Mazda Canada, Inc (MCI).  These personnel changes will be effective July 1, 2010.

In his previous role as Midwest Regional General Manager, Stettner was responsible for all sales and dealer activities for MNAO in the Midwest Region.  His replacement in the Region will be the subject of a future personnel announcement.  Stettner will soon be moving his family from Illinois to Southern California.

In his new role at MCI, Sato will report to MNAO's Chief Operating Officer, Keishi Egawa, and the company's president and CEO, Jim O'Sullivan, but will work directly with Don Romano, MNAO's Chief Marketing Officer and MCI's President, on a daily basis.  Sato will soon be relocating from Southern California to Toronto, Canada.

"In addition to strong leadership and communication skills exhibited by all three of these very talented individuals, Eric, Ron and Nick will bring to their new positions a combined 60 years of invaluable industry and Mazda operational insight and experience," said O'Sullivan of the changes.  "I am counting on this -- and their high levels of energy and enthusiasm -- to help take MNAO to the next level."

Celebrating its 40th Anniversary in North America in 2010, Mazda North American Operations is headquartered in Irvine, Calif. and oversees the sales, marketing, parts and customer service support of Mazda vehicles in the United States, Canada and Mexico through nearly 900 dealers.  Operations in Canada are managed by Mazda Canada, Inc., located in Ontario; and in Mexico by Mazda Motor de Mexico in Mexico City.

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