Governor Hochul appoints Jerry Zaro to the NYRA Board of Directors
OZONE PARK, N.Y. – New York Governor Kathy Hochul has appointed Jerry Zaro to the New York Racing Association, Inc. (NYRA) Board of Directors, NYRA announced today. This appointment fills the vacancy created by the retirement of Michael J. Del Giudice and is effective immediately.
Mr. Zaro is an active breeder and thoroughbred owner. Among the horses he has campaigned are the New York-bred Blindwillie McTell, a three-time stakes winner; and Baby Yoda, who recorded the fastest Beyer Speed Figure  at all NYRA tracks in 2021.
“For generations, New Yorkers have flocked to venues like Saratoga Race Course and Belmont Park to witness world class thoroughbred racing and connect with family and friends,” said Governor Hochul. “The sport drives a far-reaching industry responsible for an enormous number of good jobs and billions in annual economic impact. I am pleased to appoint Jerry to this important role to help ensure continued success for NYRA and the sport.”
A resident of Harrison, N.Y., Mr. Zaro is Chair of the Banking and Real Estate Services Department at Sills Cummis & Gross, a full-service corporate law firm with offices in New York and New Jersey. Mr. Zaro is actively involved in the real estate industry and develops, owns, operates, and manages industrial, office and residential properties in multiple states.
“Horse racing is an engine of economic opportunity for New York State, and I thank Governor Hochul for the opportunity to join the distinguished NYRA Board of Directors and contribute to the sport I love,” said Zaro. “NYRA is the premier racing circuit in the country because this board and the management team have embraced change and prioritized integrity and safety. The future of New York racing is bright.”
In addition to his private sector experience, Mr. Zaro has held numerous commissioner and cabinet level positions in the administrations of the last eight consecutive New Jersey governors. In 2018, he was appointed as a Trustee and currently serves as Treasurer of the Gateway Development Corporation (GDC). The GDC oversees the $30 billion Gateway Project, which involves the construction of a new rail tunnel under the Hudson River; a new Portal Bridge over the Hackensack River; and an expansion of New York’s Penn Station.
In addition to the appointment of Mr. Zaro, NYRA today announced the departure of Joseph Spinelli from the NYRA Board of Directors.
The organizational structure of the NYRA Board of Directors was established in 2017 according to legislation enacted through the New York State budget, which returned majority control of NYRA back to the not-for-profit organization and dissolved the temporary NYRA Reorganization Board established by the New York State Legislature in 2012.
For additional information, please visit NYRA.com/Board.