A native of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, Binkowski moved with his family to San Diego in 1960. He attended San Diego City College majoring in radio broadcasting and graduated in 1971 from the University of San Diego with a degree in United States history.
Binkowski retired in early 2016 after working for 38 years with the SDBGA and was the first paid employee of the Holiday Bowl for the inaugural game in 1978. He began as the part-time Public Relations Director (1978–84); then began his full-time employment with the bowl game in 1985 as Director of Marketing and Public Relations (1985–93). As the bowl game grew in stature and prestige Binkowski’s expertise in managing one of "America’s Most Exciting Bowl Games" (a label the Holiday Bowl earned after the 1980 game), he was named Assistant Executive Director (1994–96), then Associate Executive Director (1997-2000). Binkowski took over managing the bowl game as Executive Director in 2001.
With his new position and responsibilities as Executive Director, Binkowski had to give up a 36-year career as a public address announcer, which began in high school in 1965. Binkowski’s skill set has allowed him to wear many hats during the years including public address announcer, public relations, morning sports radio, and a short stint as a radio DJ. His voice is highly recognizable and during those years he gained the reputation as the “Voice of San Diego”. He can be heard on a posted YouTube video announcing the starting lineup for MLB's 1992 All Star Game held at San Diego's Jack Murphy Stadium.
Binkowski started his public address career as a senior in high school in December 1965, working a Christmas basketball tournament at the University of San Diego High School. In the summer of 1968 Binkowski worked at SeaWorld as a dolphin show announcer. In 1973, Binkowski began working as a backup public address announcer for San Diego Padres baseball games. He was the backup through 1985 and began as the full-time Padres public address announcer in 1986, working 1,101 consecutive games through the 1999 season.
He was also the public address announcer for the NFL San Diego Chargers beginning in 1977 and continued through 1999.
Binkowski announced San Diego State football and basketball games between 1980 and 2000. He was public address announcer for the San Diego Mariners (World Hockey Association), San Diego Clippers (NBA), San Diego Friars (World Team Tennis), San Diego Sockers (North American Soccer League, Major Indoor Soccer League).
In 1988, Binkowski made a cameo appearance as a "Daddy" in the cult classic Return of the Killer Tomatoes.
Binkowski’s philosophy as an announcer was not to be a cheerleader, but to be part of the game. During a Public Address Seminar he taught in San Diego for over 50 practicing announcers, he stated, “the biggest compliment I get is when people tell me they really didn’t notice my announcing. That would tell me I was giving them the information and not trying to put on a show. The best announcer is one no one notices.”
Binkowski credits his style as being patterned after John Ramsey, a longtime voice of the Los Angeles Angels, Oakland Raiders, Los Angeles Lakers, Los Angeles Rams, and Los Angeles Dodgers.
Binkowski was the public address announcer for the San Diego Padres in the 1984 and 1998 World Series; the 1992 All-Star Baseball Game in San Diego; and the 1988 and 1993 Super Bowl games.
He was also the public address announcer for the Western Athletic Conference basketball tournament (1992-1998).
Binkowski began his radio broadcasting career as a DJ in 1969 for San Diego radio stations KFMX. In 1984-85 he was a weekend newscaster at KOGO-AM and a weekend country music DJ in 1986-87 for KSON-FM. In September 1987, while continuing his Holiday Bowl duties, Binkowski worked as a morning sports reporter for KSDO 1130 AM and KOGO radio stations in San Diego, a position he held until 2000.
He began his sports career as a public relations assistant with the San Diego Rockets of the National Basketball Association in 1970-71. The franchise moved to Houston, Texas, in the summer of 1971, and Binkowski served in the same capacity for the Houston Rockets for the 1971-72 season. In the summer of 1972, Binkowski was hired as public relations director of the San Diego Gulls of the Western Hockey League. When the Gulls and the Western Hockey League ceased operations in 1974, Binkowski was then hired by the San Diego Conquistadors of the American Basketball Association. The Conquistadors disbanded in the summer of 1975 and Binkowski worked as an advertising manager of a local weekly newspaper until he was hired as the Public Relations Director of the San Diego Mariners of the World Hockey Association in January 1977, a position he held until the team disbanded in May of that year.
As a public address announcer, he has witnessed some of the most memorable moments in San Diego sports history including the Chargers-Raiders “Holy Roller” (1978), San Diego Chicken Grand Hatching (1979), Steve Garvey's walk-off home run in game 5 of the 1984 playoffs against the Cubs, and Roseanne Barr's infamous National Anthem (1990). Perhaps his most memorable moment came in 1999 as part of his last game as announcer for the San Diego Padres. While preparing for the ceremony, he noticed the new announcer carrying a brand-new microphone. He mentioned to his wife Christina that despite announcing 1,101 games, “he” never received a new microphone. As part of the gifts he received that day (including a signed jersey by the Padres, a San Diego City proclamation declaring April 6, 1999 as Bruce Binkowski Day and a Gold Rolex watch) was “his” microphone cast in bronze, commemorating his 1,101 games. It was truly a special and memorable moment for the “Voice of San Diego”.
In 2013, Binkowski marked a 40-year career working at Qualcomm Stadium a place where he has called his home away from home. He has clocked over 75,000 hours working at the stadium.
During Binkowski’s tenure as executive director of the San Diego Bowl Game Association, a second game, the Poinsettia Bowl, was created in 2005 and has become very successful. Producing two nationally recognized bowl games within a week of each other every December is ample proof of Binkowski's skills as a manager and organizer of his staff.
The SDBGA is an organization that manages, along with the two bowl games, various festivities during the year including; Jack-in-the-Box Hoops at the Beach 3 on 3 basketball tournament, Golf Tournament, Weiner Dog races, a Million Dollar Hole in One contest, Big Bay Balloon Parade and provide hospitality to the visiting football teams annually. It has a staff of 8, 150 Committee and Board members known as the Redcoat Committee and over 1500 volunteers.
2015-Feb. 29, 2016 Executive Consultant
Other PA duties have included San Diego Clippers (NBA), San Diego Friars (World Team Tennis), San Diego Sockers (North American Soccer League) (one season both indoor and outdoor), San Diego Jaws (North American Soccer League) and San Diego Gulls (International Hockey League)Baseball:
World Series: 1984 & 1998
All Star Game 1992
Super Bowl: 1988 & 1993
Japan Bowl: 1993
Western Athletic Conference Basketball Tournament: 1992–98
Binkowski has been married to his wife Christina since December 28, 1980. The couple has three children and four grandchildren.