Executive Vice President/Chief Executive Officer
United States Trotting Association
Mike Tanner is the executive vice president/chief executive officer of the United States Trotting Association, the Standardbred breed registry and harness racing’s organizing body. The USTA is based in Columbus, Ohio and Tanner is the ninth EVP in the organization’s 76-year history.
Tanner came to the USTA following a stint as the director of racing operations at Harrah’s Chester Casino & Racetrack (October 2005-December 2008). During his tenure at Chester, Tanner put together and directed a team that brought world-class Standardbred racing back to the Delaware Valley while renewing such industry fixtures as the Battle of the Brandywine and the Colonial Trot. Those races, together with the introduction of the rich Ben Franklin Pace and a lucrative overnight program, served to establish the Pennsylvania oval as one of the elite venues in the sport. He currently sits on the board of trustees of the American Horse Council, the advisory board of the University of Arizona’s Race Track Industry Program and the board of directors for the Harness Horse Youth Foundation.
Previously, Tanner held a variety of positions in Thoroughbred racing at Gulfstream Park in Hallandale Beach, Florida, from 1993-2005, including director of marketing, media, and simulcasting; assistant to the president, and director of communications. He performed special assignments at various Magna Entertainment Corp. holdings, did additional work for the Breeders’ Cup from 2001-2003, and was a member of the National Thoroughbred Racing Association Technology Group’s communications task force in 2002. He began his management career in 1992 at Ladbroke Detroit Race Course.
Tanner graduated with a Bachelor of Arts degree in Psychology from the University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill in 1988. He completed graduate work in Clinical Psychology at Bowling Green State University from 1989-1991, and subsequently obtained a Master of Business Administration degree at The Ohio State University. He and his wife, Gail, reside in Blacklick, Ohio.