Meet JKS Incorporated’s Business Relations Manager: Mary Elizabeth Brunstetter

Here’s an introduction that is long overdue. 

Mary Elizabeth Brunstetter, or “M.E.” for short, has worked at JKS Incorporated for nearly 15 years. As our Business Relations Manager, Mary Elizabeth is a Jane of all trades. When she’s not managing experiential event programs or wrangling administrative duties, you’ll find her consulting with clients and building out project concepts and budgets.  

“M.E. came to work at JKS Incorporated in 2009 to help us manage special projects like our race team and mobile marketing logistics—she has proven herself to be a key component to our team and has been with us ever since,” said Christy Cox Spencer, JKS Incorporated’s President. “One of M.E.’s best traits is her willingness to take on special projects and really do whatever she needs to to get the job done. She is also incredibly organized, professional, and a calming factor in our world of tight deadlines and last-minute requests from clients. I have the utmost respect for her and her work ethic.” 

As we continue to celebrate 40 years of JKS Incorporated (and the people that have made this anniversary possible), I sat down with Mary Elizabeth to ask her about her role as Business Relations Manager, some of her favorite projects from over the years, and what she likes most about working at JKS Incorporated. 


Rachel: Let’s start by defining your role at JKS Incorporated. What do your responsibilities look like day-to-day as Business Relations Manager?

Mary Elizabeth: Like all of the employees here at JKS, I wear many hats. Everyone has to to keep things running, especially after going through the COVID-19 pandemic. Our team is more trim now and we are all working twice as hard to keep things running smoothly. I think that we have done a great job, but we’ve had to do a lot of pivoting. All that being said, I work with new and existing clients to manage their experiential event programs. That includes project management from the initial conversation to discuss ideas and concept, to building a budget, tracking and reporting event statistics, managing staff and logistics, all the way to project close out and completion. I also manage administrative duties like invoicing, profit and loss reporting, bank statement reconciliation, and more. 



We talk a lot about experiential events at JKS Incorporated. Can you describe what exactly an experiential event is?

With experiential events, you’re trying to create a mobile and reusable event that is going to capture an audience’s attention. Think of it like taking a brand on a tour—these events are meant to be immersive and aimed at deepening audience engagement with a brand. A successful experiential event, like the ones we’ve hosted for M&M’s Racing and Can-Am in the past, are centered around creating memorable connections with a company’s product or service through things like interactive activities, storytelling, and sensory stimulation. With these types of events, we’re always trying to push boundaries and think outside of the box. It’s so much fun to work with companies to come up with creative ideas and then bring them to life. 


You started at JKS Incorporated in February of 2009. How has your role evolved over the past 15 years?

When I was first hired in 2009 I worked solely on the new—at the time—NASCAR Nationwide Series race team called Cardinal Motorsports which was housed in JKS. JKS’s Founder, Will Spencer, was part owner alongside our Fabricator and Motorsports Coordinator, Ed Berrier. I was brought on to manage travel and logistics for the race team, as well as budget reporting, billing, and some minor public relations work. After that first year, I continued working with Cardinal Motorsports but I was also offered more work specifically for JKS. I started managing some of our NASCAR showcar programs and that evolved into working on large-scale requests for proposals, traveling to help present some of our ideas and concepts to potential clients, and then managing full-scale programs like the Mellow Yellow National Hot Rod Association display when they became the title sponsor for the drag racing circuit. Since then, I’ve continued working on experiential event programs and have had the opportunity to work on some really exciting projects. 



What projects stick out to you as the most memorable?

There are definitely too many to count, but three come to mind immediately. The Cub Cadet Test Drive Challenge is the first. We took a 53-foot trailer and loaded it up with a bunch of different models of Cub Cadet mowers and traveled to different retailers throughout the U.S. that carried the brand. We set up a big obstacle course in the parking lot and customers could literally walk up, jump on one of the mowers, and then do a test drive through the course. I think the zero-turn model was pretty new at the time, and Cub Cadet was really excited about customers test driving it. 

Next is the Bud Light Party Bus Tour. We used our Skydeck motorcoach for this program. We printed and wrapped the Skydeck in Bud Light-branded vinyl graphics and then took the bus to major cities, bars, music festivals, and concerts. Fans had the opportunity to walk through the bus, interact with the brand, and the bus’s top deck served as a premium location to watch concerts and festivals. 

The last one is a project that I am currently working on—the Goodyear Aviation booth. We set up the booth at the EAA AirVenture show, which is the largest airshow that I am aware of, in Oshkosh, Wisconsin every year. It is really cool because it’s set up right on the flightline and it showcases both consumers and aviation tires. 


There is a lot of diversity in the types of projects that come through our office. Would you say that that variety is one of your favorite things about working at JKS Incorporated?

Definitely. We never know what kind of call we’re going to get from a manufacturing company or marketing company about an idea they’ve come up with or a goal they are trying to achieve. From NASCAR and party buses, to air shows and sporting events, there is a huge variety in the projects that we work on, so it’s not like we are doing the same thing everyday. We also get to work with clients to build out their experiential event or display and manage the project from initial concept to completion, which I think in general is just a really rewarding experience.