James Charles “J.C.” Trujillo is a native-born Arizonan who has lived in his hometown of Prescott virtually all of his 70 years. As a youngster growing up on a ranch, he decided he wanted to be a rodeo cowboy — and more than that, a world-champion “bareback rider.” He achieved that ambition when he was a member of the Arizona State University intercollegiate rodeo team, and in 1968, won the intercollegiate bareback riding championship.
Since 1967, Trujillo has been a member of the Professional Rodeo Cowboys Association (PRCA) and qualified for the national final rodeo 12 times. He still holds the World’s Oldest Rodeo record for five bareback championships. In 1981, he won the world championship in the bareback riding. In 1985, Trujillo retired from professional rodeo after competing in his final National Finals Rodeo during the first year it was held in Las Vegas, Nevada. He placed sixth in the world that year.
He is well respected and well known in the professional rodeo industry. He continues to serve on committees and engages with the Professional Rodeo Cowboys Association (PRCA) and other rodeo committees around the United States. Trujillo is passionate about preserving the sport of rodeo and also about keeping the western traditions alive at the World’s Oldest Rodeo.
Now, the general manager of the renowned Prescott Frontier Days, Trujillo is married to his wife, Margo, has two daughters and six grandchildren, including two grandsons, who compete in high school rodeos. Perhaps the best descriptors for Trujillo are that he has a captivating megawatt smile, loves to laugh and firmly believes that a positive attitude will win competitions.
Trujillo has led the non-profit organization, the Prescott Frontier Days, Inc., for the past 16 years and has seen an increase in sponsorships, record attendance, booming ticket sales and a rodeo title that is coveted by professional cowboys and cowgirls around the country. The World’s Oldest Rodeo is known as a nostalgic, traditional and competitive rodeo by rodeo fans, sponsors, contestants and the community. With his leadership, knowledge of professional rodeo and his passion to preserve the traditions that make the Rodeo unique, the World’s Oldest Rodeo is one of the top best 40 rodeos in the United States.
Preparations have already begun for the 133rd World’s Oldest Rodeo that takes place at the Prescott Rodeo Grounds from June 29 through July 5, 2020. Tickets go on sale in mid-December and can be purchased online at worldsoldestrodeo.com.
When Trujillo is not working, he is a very dedicated family man and he and Margo spend time with their two daughters and six grandchildren. Competitive rodeo runs in the family as two of their grandsons are competing in high school and now professional rodeo. Trujillo is a mentor to both of his grandsons and is not afraid to teach them what he knows about rodeo, life and being a stand-up man in today’s world.
Helping others is not foreign to Trujillo as he has hosted a boy’s hunting camp at his home near Steamboat Springs, Colorado. He is a giving, loyal mentor to many and is always willing to lend a bit of advice, either rodeo related or life in general. He is a well-respected husband, father, grandfather, rodeo legend and now hopefully a champion dancer!
This year, Trujillo is entering another competition, the local Dancing for the Stars event to help raise money for kids in Yavapai County and will be on the stage performing on April 18. The event is held at the historic Prescott Elks Theater on April 18, 2020, with two performances (a matinee and one evening show).
“I am honored to be included and considered for the Dancing for the Stars event. I believe in the organization and have attended the event. I am looking forward to putting ‘my best foot forward’ and appreciate the community’s support,” Trujillo said.
Your support, vote and donation are much appreciated! Help Trujillo be a success for the Boys and Girls Clubs of Central Arizona by clicking visiting WorldsOldestRodeo.com/Vote-JC to donate, vote or sponsor Trujillo, and please share on your social media channels. Thank you in advance for your support of this great event, great organization and great community leader! QCBN
By Donna Werking