We are black, white, brown, red and yellow. We are men and women. We coach athletes who are straight and LGBT; who believe in a greater power, and are non-believers; who are at every stage of physical and emotional development. We coach youth, high school, club and professional teams.
Each of us – like all of you – today faces an opponent far tougher than ever before: COVID-19.
Some of us are battling health concerns. Many of us have financial fears. All of us worry about our families, friends, colleagues and players.
Yet we are all soccer coaches. By nature, we are problem solvers. We lead by example, with clear, steady voices. It’s never been more difficult to do that.
Fortunately, we are not alone. We are all United Soccer Coaches. Our organization is strong and it has the resources to help all of us progress through these dangerous, uncertain times.
As members of the Advocacy Council, we are inspired by United Soccer Coaches’ commitment to its members. We are honored and proud to do our part to help.
This crisis is like a soccer match. Current conditions constantly shift. We must be alert, flexible and innovative.
Humanity often shines brightly, especially in the darkest times. We have already heard from many of you. Your positive outreach and offers of support have been overwhelming, but not surprising. You have always been there for your players, for each other, and for the entire soccer community.
Our players are watching our cues. The soccer community is following our lead. It makes a difference.
So what can you do? Reach out to your players. Let them know how much you care. Whether they have lost a season or a loved one, be there for them. At the same time, keep them connected and engaged with each other. Help them grow as leaders.
If you can, take advantage of United Soccer Coaches’ many resources to grow professionally. The COVID-19 page on our website offers a variety of educational opportunities.
At the same time, please take care of yourselves. That same COVID-19 page is filled with many important resources, like how to access financial assistance.
Please continue to share your questions and concerns with us, as Advocacy Council members. If we don’t have all the answers or resources, we will find out who does. We are here for our own advocacy group, and for all.
This has been a difficult spring. But this is also the season of rebirth, and hope. Someday soon we will be back on the field, coaching the game we miss so much with colleagues and players we love and appreciate dearly.
We know we will get through this, because we are truly United Soccer Coaches.
The Advocacy Council
Chris Behler, Native American Coaches Chair
Haley Carter, Women Coaches Chair
Marguerite Ferrell, Youth Chair
Nicole Hercules, Black Coaches Chair
Lee Jarrell, Advocacy Relations Manager
Howie Putterman, High School Girls Chair
Mike Lynch, Faith-Based Chair
Steve McCrath. College Men’s Chair
Sue Ryan, Advocacy Council Chair
Julio Serrano, Latino Coaches Chair
Kate Ward, Disabilities Allies Chair
Aliceann Wilber, College Women’s Chair
Greg Winkler, High School Boys Chair
Dan Woog, LGBT & Allies Chair