TrailRunner Names Managing Director to Build Its Growing Business in ‘the Increasingly Complex World of Sports’

Jamie Zaninovich, who previously served as deputy commissioner and chief operating officer of the Pac-12 conference, aims to help clients navigate the ever-evolving—and increasingly complex—world of sports.

Southlake-based TrailRunner International, a global strategic communications advisory firm, has hired college sports veteran Jamie Zaninovich as managing director to help TrailRunner build its growing sports business.

“Jamie spent his entire career in sports, and brings vast experience, exemplary leadership skills and deep relationships that will benefit our current and future clients as we continue to grow and expand,” CEO Jim Hughes said in a statement. “We have had the pleasure of working with Jamie at the Pac-12 and know he is exactly the right person to help our firm build its growing sports portfolio.”

Zaninovich has 30 years of experience, and previously served as deputy commissioner and chief operating officer of the Pac-12 Conference.

TrailRunner said his past accomplishments include leading efforts to expand a Pac-12 Global initiative into China and other international markets, creating the Pac-12/SWAC Legacy Series and Pac-12 Coast-to-Coast Challenge for men’s and women’s basketball, extensive collaboration with the Rose Bowl and College Football Playoff, and helping lead the development of Pac-12 Team Green, a first-of-its-kind platform focusing on sustainability in college athletics.

Thriving in ‘the increasingly complex world of sports’

Before the Pac-12, Zaninovich was commissioner of the West Coast Conference and a sports administrator at both Stanford and Princeton universities.

In 2010, Sports Business Journal recognized him on its “Forty under 40” list.

“Having worked with TrailRunner for nearly a decade, I know firsthand how committed the entire team is to premium client service, and I couldn’t be more honored and energized to join this best-in-class firm built around a culture of collaboration and service to clients,” Zaninovich said in a statement. “I look forward to bringing my passion for and experience in sports business to this remarkable team and helping our clients thrive in the exciting and increasingly complex world of sports.”

Founded in 2016

TrailRunner said it has experienced significant growth since its founding in 2016, with strong momentum in special situations and corporate assignments spanning financial communications, crisis communications, corporate reputation, sports, and high-impact reputational work across the full spectrum of corporate affairs.

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