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April 28, 2016 @ 12:00 pm - 1:15 pm
With 21 years of experience in professional baseball, Jim Jarecki has helped make the vision of the West Michigan Whitecaps a reality starting with the team’s inaugural year (1994). As Vice President of Whitecaps Professional Baseball, Jim is responsible for creating and upholding the “Fifth Third Ballpark Experience,” which includes fun and exciting family entertainment-for each and every fan that enters through the gates. He has facilitated numerous events at Fifth Third Ballpark, including the 1995 and 2003 Midwest League All-Star Games, five Midwest League championship series, the Detroit Tigers exhibition game in 1999, Fantasy Camps and facility events. Prior to the 2006 season, Jim oversaw the $1.4 million dollar renovations at Fifth Third Ballpark of the suite level and outfield bleachers.
At the conclusion of the 2006 season, Jim received the Midwest League Executive of the Year award, which was voted on by league owners and General Managers. During the 2008-’09 off-season, Jim oversaw the $1.5 million renovation to the ballpark which included playing field, new box seats, ballpark roof, backstop netting, structural repairs to concrete and asphalt, and suite renovations.
The Whitecaps received the Bob Freitas Award for Best Franchise of the Decade from Baseball America in 1999. In 1998 and 2000, Jim and the Whitecaps were recognized with the Midwest League Stadium Operations Award. After the 2007 season, the Whitecaps were awarded the Midwest League’s Larry MacPhail Promotional Trophy for best promotion of baseball and entertainment. Following up the Midwest League award, the Whitecaps took it one more step in December and accepted the Promotional Trophy for the entire Minor Leagues at the Winter Meetings in Nashville. In addition, the Whitecaps were named MiLB’s Team of the Year following the 2007 MWL Championship.
Jim’s experience in professional baseball and includes operations, marketing, ticket and sponsorship sales, promotions and media relations. He started with the Chicago White Sox in telemarketing and his minor league experience has included working with the Oklahoma RedHawks as an intern and the Beloit Snappers as Assistant GM. Jim is a 1989 graduate of Northern Illinois University and holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Communications. In 2003, and again in 2005, he was named to the Grand Rapids Business Journal’s “Top 40 Under 40 Business Leaders” and is currently on the Comstock Park DDA board, Wolverine Worldwide YMCA board, Midwest League Schedule committee, and MiLB’s Licensing Committee.
A native of Woodridge, Illinois, Jim remains a Chicago sports fan to the end. He continues to play and coach youth basketball in the off-season and attempts the great game of golf when time permits during the season. Jim resides in Grand Rapids with his wife Christine, daughters Addison and Kelsey and son Carson.