SALT LAKE CITY — Steve Starks has found his replacement.
On Friday, Starks announced that Jim Olson has been named the president of the Utah Jazz and Larry H. Miller Sports & Entertainment (LHMSE), taking over the job that Starks held for nearly five years before being promoted to CEO of the LHM Group in August.
Olson will officially begin on Monday.
Olson had been the executive vice president for LHMSE and president of Vivint Smart Home Arena and has been with the company for 25 years. He will oversee the day-to-day business operations of the Jazz and also be over Megaplex Theatres, Vivint Smart Home Arena, the Salt Lake Bees baseball team, the Salt Lake City Stars NBA G League team, Jazz Gaming NBA 2K team, The Zone Sports Network and the Tour of Utah.
“Jim has a comprehensive knowledge, understanding and application of our mission, vision, values, and culture,” owner Gail Miller said in a statement. “He has articulated a compelling long-term strategy to give back to the community, constantly innovate, improve the fan experience and win an NBA championship. He is an integral part of our team as we manage for the future.”
Olson first joined the Utah Jazz in 1994 and has held multiple positions within the organization. He’s been the vice president of ticket sales (2003-06), senior vice president of sales and marketing (2006-2013), chief operating officer of LHMSE (2013-15), and interim president of LHMSE.
“He thoroughly understands our community and fan base," Starks said of Olson in a statement. "I appreciate his focus on continuous improvement and delivering the best guest experiences within our offices, theatres, ballpark, and arena. He is a results-oriented business leader, committed to our industry. He played a key leadership role during the Vivint Smart Home Arena renovation and influenced many of the updates that visitors enjoy today.”
Olson is coming in when business is good. Last season, the Jazz sold out every game (and now have sold out 74 straight), they just had their biggest selling day in team store history with the announcement of the purple mountain throwbacks, and they are seen as a legitimate contender for the NBA championship entering this season.
“It is an honor to represent the Miller family and the Utah Jazz in this role and I am incredibly excited to get started,” Olson said. “Our many businesses are healthy with a talented management team and group of employees in place. As an organization, we are stewards of community assets and committed to staging world-class teams and events. I believe we are well-positioned to support those aspirations on behalf of our passionate fan base, including our pursuit of an NBA championship.”
Olson is a native of Salt Lake City and is a graduate of the University of Utah.