Haley C Carter
Senior Women's National Team Assistant Coach
Afghanistan Football Federation
United Soccer Coaches Member Since 2013
Current and previous involvement with United Soccer Coaches
I’ve been a member of United Soccer Coaches since 2013 and joined when I started transitioning from playing the game to coaching. I have pursued my goalkeeping coach education through the academy and am looking forward to attending my second convention in Chicago. I was fortunate enough to have my work with the Afghanistan Women's National Team featured in the September/October 2018 issue of the Soccer Journal and on the United Soccer Coaches podcast with Dean Linke. United Soccer Coaches has been instrumental in presenting my fellow staff members and me with opportunities to grow in coaching, networking, and presenting and I am incredibly grateful for all of the support the organization and its membership has provided me since joining.
I have experience coaching at the youth, college, and international levels. I specialize in training goalkeepers and initiated my transition into coaching by establishing Epic90 Goalkeeping Academy, LLC in 2014. I’ve coached youth club soccer with Sting (Austin, TX) and have served as an Olympic Development Program (ODP) Staff Coach for both Region III and the South Texas Youth Soccer Association. From 2014-2015, I served as the Volunteer Assistant at Huston-Tillotson University in Austin, TX under Andrew Tunnicliffe. In that role, I helped coach the team to their second Red River Athletic Conference tournament appearance. I then moved to Sam Houston State University as the Volunteer Assistant and Goalkeeper Coach under Tom Brown. I was fortunate enough to help coach the team to the Southland Conference Finals and the starting goalkeeper graduated as a three-time All-Southland honoree and all-time shutout leader for SHSU.
At the international level, I serve as the Assistant Coach for the Afghanistan Women’s National Team. I was hired in March 2016 and have been responsible for fundraising, sponsorships, budget management, and travel coordination in addition to coaching responsibilities. I personally planned and coordinated the team’s first ever formal training camp which took place in San Francisco, California from 27 in 2016. With head coach Kelly Lindsey, I helped lead the team to its final participation in the South Asia Football Federation’s (SAFF) Women’s Championships and in two international training camps (India, 2016 and Jordan, 2018). Having started my work with the Afghanistan women during my final year of professional play, I became the first ever women’s player to receive the FIFPro Merit Award and used the award’s funds to cover the team’s travel and operational expenses from 2016-2018.
What other experiences in soccer, other sports and/or organizations would be pertinent to your work as a United Soccer Coaches Board member?
Prior to transitioning into coaching, I gained substantial experience playing the game. I competed in NCAA Division I women’s soccer at the U.S. Naval Academy under Carin Gabarra and Rob Blanck from 2002-2005. I finished my collegiate career with a 1.02 GAA, as a three-time Patriot League All-Academic Honoree, and was a member of the first Service Academy women’s sports team to qualify for the NCAA tournament (2003). After graduating from Navy with honors in 2006, I served nearly eight years as a Marine Corps Logistics Officer, making two combat deployments in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom.
Between deployments, I competed for the U.S. All-Armed Forces Women’s Soccer team in the Council for International Military Sports World Championships in Ede, Netherlands (2008) and Cherbourg, France (2010). I finished my career with a 0.50 GAA and was Marine Corps Air Station Cherry Point Female Athlete of the Year and finalist for Marine Corps Female Athlete of the Year in 2010. While stationed in Hawaii from 2010-2013, I competed for the Honolulu Bulls in the W1 league, a semi-professional venture offering high level women players located on Oʻahu an opportunity to play the game.
Following my time on Active Duty, I spent three seasons as a reserve Goalkeeper for the Houston Dash of the National Women’s Soccer League (NWSL) under Head Coach Randy Waldrum. During my time with the Dash, I was also involved with multiple WPSL teams as a player-coach including the TTi Bluebonnets and Houston South Select. I retired from play following the 2016 NWSL season in order to focus primarily on coaching and team management.
What do you believe are your strengths that will make you an effective Board member of United Soccer Coaches?
Beyond soccer, I’m a business leader with over a decade’s experience in operations, process improvement, and contract management. Since leaving the Marine Corps, I’ve filled multiple corporate roles ranging from manager to senior director in the oil and gas, technology, and chemicals sectors. In addition to my degree from the Naval Academy, I own an MBA with Distinction from the University of Liverpool and currently attend the University of Houston Law Center in pursuit of my Juris Doctor. My leadership, business acumen, and diverse professional experiences have made me an asset to many organizations.
I’ve served as a consultant to multiple non-profit organizations and boards including the Girl Scouts of Southwest Texas, the Asherah Foundation, and Girl Power Organization, and was most recently elected as Vice President of the TX-7 Chapter of the Women Marines Association. I was instrumental in driving the Afghanistan Women’s National Team’s partnership with the U.S.-based non-profit Soccer Without Borders and am responsible for managing all financial and operational aspects of the relationship. I am well-versed in international soccer and non-profit governance, sponsorship development, and fundraising. I’m passionate about the game at all levels, empowering young people through soccer, whether as coaches or players, and providing United Soccer Coaches an international platform to grow and evolve. I hope to serve the membership by combining my business skillset, leadership, domestic and international networks, and experience in and awareness of the game to create more opportunities for coaches to thrive and grow in their craft. Thank you in advance for your consideration.