Favorite Food?


John McCartney

Founder & President

John McCartney, founder of Blast! Marketing, is an award-winning marketing professional with more than 25 years of experience in marketing, sales, and promotion on both local and national levels and has extensive industry contacts befitting his long career. John continues to innovate and develop Blast’s range of services and strategies to stay abreast of the lightning-quick changes to the field of marketing and public relations.

In 1976, John began his career with the Chicago Bulls and moved to the Chicago White Sox in 1978, working for twelve years under sports legends Bill Veeck and Jerry Reinsdorf, holding many positions including Director of Sales. He created numerous unique promotional events for the White Sox, some of which are still calendared to this day.

In 1990, John left Comiskey Park, but not the world of sports, to start Coast to Coast productions (CTC). At CTC, John implemented national High School Marching and Concert Band competitions with Major League Baseball and the NBA. John also served as Executive Producer of On the Bench, a live radio and television sports talk show, which was nominated for a local Emmy and carried nationwide on SportsChannel, as was CTC’s hunting and fishing show Outdoors with Jim Covert. During this time John also produced Michael Jordan’s Come Fly with Me video for his foundation.

John left the world of sports for a career in the restaurant and hospitality industry. He served as Director of Marketing and Sales for Medieval Times, Carlucci Hospitality Group and Ala Carte Entertainement, owner and operator of more than 30 Chicagoland restaurants, bars and nightclubs. From Ala Carte Entertainment, John went on to join friends Jerry Kleiner and Howard Davis as Marketing Director for their esteemed group KDK Management.

In 2002, John created Blast! Marketing, a labor of love that has now become a full service agency serving an extensive roster of hospitality and retail clientele and is dedicated to client services. As this industry continues to change and grow, so does John’s dedication to his clients, staff and Blast! Marketing. As Jerry Reinsdorf, John’s boss at the White Sox and Bulls, always preached, “Surround yourself with great people and they will make you look very good!”

John resides in Park Ridge with his family and his dog, Peanut, and spends his free time in Lake Geneva or on the tennis court.

Favorite Food?
“Brussels Sprouts ”


Laurie Cairns

Managing Partner

Laurie works closely with ownership and executive management to craft brand strategies that inform business plans. She has provided leadership in developing corporate vision and mission statements backed by powerful brand platforms and actionable marketing and internal communications plans.

Laurie has developed brands for a range of clients that range from family owned businesses to Fortune 500 companies. Her powerful adaptation of strategic branding and brand archetyping has contributed to powerful, differentiated brands that engender loyalty and motivate employees.

Favorite Food?
“Toast and honey”


Amanda Onyon

Design Director

Amanda Onyon, Design Director, brings to clients more than 25 years of professional experience in the design industry. She is a flexible, creative thinker with a penchant for problem solving. Her specialty is corporate identity, focusing on the outward expression of the brand, including its name and visual appearance. Amanda has won numerous awards throughout her career for her design work. Her client roster has included Homeward Residential, AHMSi, Abbott Laboratories, Aspect Software, Equis Corporation, GE Rail, GE Aviation, GE Transportation, GE Financial, Lutheran General Health Care Systems and MasterCard International.

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