Zack Hill, one of the most conscientious public-relations directors in Philadelphia sports history, will be honored Saturday by the Flyers.
Prior to the team’s 1 p.m. game against Anaheim, the Philadelphia Flyers will unveil the Zack Hill Media Center at the Wells Fargo Center.
“I’m overwhelmed, to be honest with you,” Hill said as he drove on the Pennsylvania Turnpike and headed to Philadelphia on Friday. “It’s crazy. When I was told about it, I actually thought I was being punked. But it’s exciting. You can’t believe how overwhelmed I am. I’m nervous, I’m excited, and it’s an awesome feeling.”
Hill, 61, who now lives in Ohio with his better half, Heidi, became semi-retired two years ago before serving as a Flyers PR consultant last season. He spent 30 years (1993-2023) in the Flyers’ communications department, and became the NHL’s most respected public-relations director. No request was too big, and he was legendary for how he went out of his way to help the media — local and national — get access to the players and coaching staff.
He led a public-relations team that was honored with four Dick Dillman Awards as the conference’s top PR staff. In 2022, the Philadelphia Sports Writers Association named him the recipient of their “Good Guy” Award.
Prior to joining the Philadelphia Flyers, Hill was the 76ers’ public-relations director from 1989-93; before that, he was the Sixers’ assistant PR director for two seasons.
Relaxing on his lake
Hill, formerly a Delaware County resident, lives in a house on a lake that sits on his five-acre property in West Salem, Ohio (population: 1,438), located an hour south of Cleveland.
“I just love this property; it’s so stress-free,” he said. “I mean, I miss my Flyers family and the (media) guys, but I really enjoy it here. We have a beautiful pond and the dogs can swim in it. And there are carp in there that are three-feet long. I caught a couple catfish that are 20 inches long. There’s crappie, there’s bass, there’s blue gills, sunnies. It’s a little lake that’s 12 feet deep, so you can go swimming in it, and we have a little pedal boat and lots of rafts and stuff. It’s really, really relaxing.”
Hill, who has family members traveling from Dallas to be at Saturday’s unveiling of the media center, said he loved all the traveling he did with the Flyers, but he was ready to slow down and enjoy “a much slower pace.”
“Now I’m in a hammock throwing a fishing line,” he said.