SAN JOSE, Calif. – Collegiate marketer Learfield announced today that Steve Gracio has been named general manager for Spartan Sports Properties, its local team solely dedicated to representing San Jose State University Athletics.
Gracio begins his new role today, having most recently served three years as sales manager, corporate partnerships with NHL’s San Jose Sharks. Prior to that, he was with the NBA’s Sacramento Kings in the role of corporate ticket account executive, and he served nearly five years as a senior corporate sales executive with the Sacramento River Cats, Triple-A affiliate of the San Francisco Giants.
“Steve has the attributes we hold valuable and he has an exceptional sales history with the Sharks, Kings and River Cats,” said Learfield Vice President Megan Eisenhard. “He has a deep connection to this region and community and has the expertise to be an outstanding leader for us as we continue to work with university athletics in building the Spartans’ brand and providing value to our corporate partners.”
At Spartan Sports Properties, Gracio will lead all aspects of the extensive rights relationship between Learfield and San Jose State Athletics including signage, sponsorships, corporate hospitality, event marketing, radio, television and digital opportunities via the official athletics website, www.sjsuspartans.com. He also will work alongside Director of Athletics Gene Bleymaier and the university athletic department to align on all initiatives.
“Steve comes to us with wonderful sports sales and sponsorship experience here in California, and we’re pleased he’ll be joining us at San Jose State through our rights partner and guiding our Learfield relationship,” said Bleymaier.
An industry leader for more than four decades, Learfield has a deep presence in the college athletics landscape nationwide. In addition to SJSU, it manages the multimedia and sponsorship rights for 120 collegiate institutions, conferences and arenas, and supports athletic departments at all competitive levels as title sponsor of the prestigious Learfield Directors’ Cup. Learfield also provides its collegiate partners access to professional concessions and ticket sales; branding, licensing and trademark consulting; digital and social platform expertise; campus-wide business and sponsorship development; and venue and technology systems through its affiliated companies.