Now in his third season as general manager (and fifth with the club overall), Jason Mott oversees day-to-day operations of the Peoria Chiefs and their downtown stadium, Dozer Park. Succeeding Rocky Vonachen as GM was no small feat, but he took to the role immediately—and was named Midwest League Executive of the Year in his very first season.
Mott began his professional career in an entirely different sport, starting out in sales with the Nashville Predators hockey team in 2002. Prior to joining the Chiefs in 2014, he spent five years as manager of ticket sales with the Memphis Redbirds, Triple-A affiliate of the St. Louis Cardinals.
A native of Chaffee, Missouri, Mott is a lifelong Cardinals fan and holds a degree in sports management from Southeast Missouri State University. He lives in Washington with his wife Kristen and their sons, Carter and Kellen, and serves on the board of Peoria Friendship House. When he’s not at Dozer Park, he enjoys spending time with family, running, working out, collecting sports memorabilia, coaching his son’s teams and attending other sporting events.
- Proudest moment/achievement: When I was promoted to take over the Peoria Chiefs after Rocky Vonachen retired. Being in charge of an organization was a career goal, but you never want someone you admire to leave for that dream to happen. Talk about big shoes to fill! I’m honored that Rocky and the ownership thought I was ready to take over the reins and continue the legacy of the Peoria Chiefs.
- Who are your heroes? Without a doubt that would be my parents, Larry and Marilyn Mott. They taught me the core values I still live by today: hard work, dedication and earning everything you get in life. I couldn’t have had better role models to look up to.
- What are you most proud of? As a high school senior, my track coach nominated me for the 1996 Olympics torch relay through Coca-Cola, and I was selected to take part and run with the torch through Cape Girardeau, Missouri. It was one of the coolest things I’ve ever experienced.
- What’s been your most difficult decision? Leaving my job with the Nashville Predators after seven years to get into management with the Memphis Redbirds. Change is never easy, and this was the first big decision of my career. Unfortunately, I’m not sure these kind of decisions are ever easy.
- Childhood dream job: I loved math and decided I wanted to be an accountant.
- Favorite childhood memory: I was eight years old, playing first base. There were runners on first and third for the opposing team, and the batter hit a pop fly. Both runners took off. I caught the ball, tagged first base and ran to tag third base—turning an unassisted triple play!
- Have you ever been told you look like somebody famous? It may be hard to believe because I shave my head now, but when I was in my mid-20s I looked like Peyton Manning. I was told that several times a week when I lived in Nashville.
- What is something that always brings a smile to your face? Seeing the smiles on my kids’ faces when I walk in the door after a day at work.
- Do you collect anything unique? Little did I know 17 years ago when I got a bobblehead as an intern for the Nashville Predators, what that would lead to. I now have more than 500 bobbleheads!
- Would you rather be rich or famous? That is an interesting question. I’d go with being rich so I can make financial contributions to better the community in which I live. PM