Celebrating 50 Years on the Rails
May 04, 2022 7:30 AM
Joe Mazur, President and CEO, CVSR
Celebrating 50 Years on the Rails

Joe Mazur was named President of the Cuyahoga Valley Scenic Railroad in early 2017. The CVSR exists to provide a means for people to experience and engage in Cuyahoga Valley National Park, a community and regional asset.  In addition to a regular schedule, its programs include the Explorer Program; education programs for students and the public delivered by the National Park Service; fine dining excursions; holiday-themed trips, and children’s program The North Pole AdventureTM.

Over the past 5 years Joe and his team have managed to complete a $4 million capital campaign that transformed CVSR into one of the top scenic railroads in the country. Improvements include acquiring two California Zephyr dome cars, renovation of several dining cars and coach cars. These improvements enhanced the rider’s experience. Also, many upgrades were made to the fleet of locomotives.

Prior to joining the CVSR, Joe led the International Soap Box Derby from 2011 until early 2017. He brought the organization financial stability during his time as President and CEO. Under his direction the Soap Box Derby’s STEM-based education programs were created and included the Gravity Racing Challenge STEM Team Competition, STEM Summer Camps and the newly released education curriculum. In addition, more events and sponsors were added to the world-famous Derby Downs facility.  The Hall of Fame and Museum expanded to include more than 100 world championship cars and is now housed in Akron at Derby Downs. The President’s Youth Leadership Award was established to recognize volunteers under the age of 21 who have made a positive impact on their communities. For the first time in its 80-plus year history, the Derby implemented a formal strategic plan in 2014 and enhanced its mission.

Prior to 2011, Joe spent a significant portion of his early career with the largest private event facility management company in the world, SMG(now ASM Global). While serving as Regional Vice President at SMG, he facilitated a high rate of business expansion, worked to leverage minimal resources within a confined budget to deliver unforeseen revenue, and sustained that revenue over multiple years in regional event venues.  His strategic positioning and promoting of various events produced stable long-term growth potential. Joe’s achievements at SMG included the turnaround of multiple venues and supporting the design and construction of several major arenas in the Mid-West.  

Joe holds a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration from Kent State University in Kent, Ohio. He currently serves on the Tourism Ohio Advisory Board and is a graduate of Leadership Akron Class 32. He has served on several nonprofit boards and volunteers in the community.