He was born in Zambia and spent much of his youth in mining towns across central Africa. Gary is alum of Columbia University in New York and the Stanford University Center in Yokohama, where he was the recipient of the Asia and Japan Foundation Fellowship.
Gary began his career as a columnist in Japan and later became an anchor on Asahi Television. After working with UNICEF and the World Bank on educational Web development, Gary moved to the private sector. He ran number of technology start ups before founding Impact Mobile, a mobile technology company specialized in retail and brand solutions, in 2002.
Since then Gary has played a leadership role in the mobile industry. He is also a pioneer in mobile marketing and managed the first cross-carrier short code mobile campaign in North America.
In 2006 Gary founded the mobile committee for the Interactive Advertising Bureau (IAB). There he spearheaded the production of important industry resources such as the Mobile Buyer’s Guide. This work, explains how agencies and marketers can extend their digital buy into mobile. Gary was recognized with the IAB award for Industry Excellence in 2009. During this period Gary also worked with the Media Rating Council (MRC) to establish a joint task force between the IAB and the Mobile Marketing Association (MMA) to develop global, auditable mobile measurement standards.
In 2010, the Mobile Entertainment Forum (MEF) – a global mobile content and commerce advocacy organization – re-elected Gary as Chairman of the Board in North America, charging him with the task of developing a mobile commerce practice to service brands, retailers and content owners. MEF also awarded Gary an award for Industry Excellence in recognition of his dedication and success.
Gary is the recipient of the Macromedia People Choice Award, Retail Touchpoints Customer Engagement Award, as well as the Dodge Foundation award for innovation. Gary is an Asia and Japan Foundation Fellow. In 2013, Gary was recognized by Mobile Marketer publication as the “Mobile Commerce Evangelist of the Year.”
Schwartz is co-author of “The Everything Guide to Mobile Apps: A Practical Guide to Affordable Mobile App Development for Your Business” and the upcoming book “The Power of Point-Of-Purchasing Advertising: Marketing at Retail”.