The American Motorcyclist Association has named KTM North America President Jon-Erik Burleson its 2012 AMA Motorcyclist of the Year.

Burleson was recognized for his contributions to the motorcycling community over the last year. In 2012, KTM saw success in the U.S. in both the showroom and the race track. Despite flat-lining sales across the industry, KTM saw a growth in sales in North America. Since 2009, KTM’s sales have increased nearly 20% while many of its competitors saw sales going the other direction.

Meanwhile, KTM reached unprecedented success in AMA Supercross and AMA Motocross. With Ryan Dungey riding the KTM 450 SX-F, KTM won its first ever AMA Supercross main events and its first AMA Pro Racing National Motocross title.

“Jon-Erik’s innovation and leadership have positioned his company to take full advantage of what could only be described as a challenging environment in the motorcycle industry-an industry that is fighting back from its worst downturn in history,” says Rob Dingman, AMA president and chief executive officer. “It is also important to recognize our honoree’s passion for, and commitment to, motorcycling. Jon-Erik exemplifies the motorcycle lifestyle. He was raised in a motorcycle racing family and has been around motorcycling his whole life.”

Burleson succeeded the late Rod Bush as president of KTM North America in 2005 and helped the company increase its profile from an obscure Austrian brand to a premium name in off-road motorcycles. Burleson’s contributions to the industry are outlined in the January 2013 issue of the AMA’s official magazine, “American Motorcyclist”.

[Source: AMA, KTM (Facebook)