Jim Folk spent his 38th season in Major League Baseball and his 28th with the Cleveland Indians in 2019. Folk joined the organization in June of 1992 as Director of Ballpark Operations and was elevated to Vice President of Ballpark Operations in November of 2001.
As Vice President of Ballpark Operations Jim is responsible for all activities at Progressive Field, which includes ushering, security and police, guest services, maintenance, custodial, playing field, and parking activities. He works with Gateway Economic Development Corporation on lease, management, maintenance, and capital repairs issues and with the city of Cleveland on the staffing of the public safety crews at and around Progressive Field. Jim was heavily involved in the design and construction activities of the ballpark and oversaw the 1993 final series at Cleveland Stadium and the 1994 opening at the then Jacobs Field. He acted as the Cleveland Indians Project Manager for the Goodyear Spring Training/Player Development Complex and Ballpark, overseeing design and construction activities from 2007-2009.
Since joining the Indians Jim has overseen Major League Baseball’s All-Star game (1997), three World Series (1995, 1997, and 2016), and a total of 45 postseason home games at Progressive Field, along with the then Major League record of 455 consecutive sell-out games, with more than forty million fans walking through the gates. In addition, he has assisted Major League Baseball and/or the home club in the execution and supervision of All-Star Games in Baltimore (1993), Philadelphia (1996), and Chicago (2003), and World Series in New York (2001 & 2009), Chicago (2005), and Detroit (2006).
The Naperville, Illinois native’s career in baseball began with the Chicago White Sox in 1979. He worked for the Sox for 10 seasons, spending five from 1984-88 as the Assistant Director of Ballpark Operations. Prior to joining the Indians he was the Director of Operations of the Florida Suncoast Dome (now Tropicana Field) from 1989-92 where he was involved in the construction and opening of the dome in 1990.
Jim, who earned a degree from Loyola University of Chicago in 1984, is a member of the American Society of Industrial Security, International Association of Venue Managers, National Fire Protection Association, Stadium Managers Association, and serves on advisory committees to Major League Baseball’s Security & Facility Management Department. He currently serves as Chairman of the USS Cleveland Legacy Foundation and on the Boards of Directors of the Congregation of St. Joseph Ministries. Downtown Cleveland Alliance, and Historic Gateway Neighborhood Corporation. He is Past President of the Stadium Managers Association, and has served as Chairman of the Board of Directors of Saint Joseph Academy in Cleveland.
He and his wife Sue have two grown daughters, Kelly and Erin, and resides in Westlake.