A Successful MSRC Awards Night

S_First Annual MSRC Awards 033.jpg - 45911 BytesAugust 1, 2003 - More than eighty people joined in applauding the ten award winners of 2003 in a terrific celebration. The Massachusetts State Referee Committee hosted the celebration of distinguished individuals in the referee community at the Wyndham Westborough Hotel.

The initial class of award winners share a common thread related to referee development. The youth and adult referee awards were presented to three who have demonstrated clearly their continuing interest in learning and growing in this vocation. The leadership award recipients each have been advocates of referee development and advancement as they have volunteered countless hours. Certainly, the record of the Spirit of the Game Award winner Ted Carlson is marked by devotion to the improvement of referees of all levels.

State Instructor Dennis Hogan served as a emcee for the festivities, opening the night with words of welcome and light-hearted gifts for a few of the committee members. Hogan was joined at the podium by presenters for the specific awards given out. All winners received a gift and a certificate of proclamation about their award. Hogan concluded the night reading a proverb that he keeps on his desk. Included in the directives of the proverb is the observation: The good you do today, people will often forget tomorrow. Do good anyway. The award winners have done much good.

Feeling the importance of pausing to recognize the accomplishments of our peers, we hope to make this event a regular one in the referee community. Given the camaraderie and positive energy emanating from the inaugural event, we look forward to next year. In the meantime, please join us in congratulating this year's group of award winners.

Notes about the award recipients

Spirit of the Game Award - Ted Carlson of Bedford

Ted has been a mainstay for the MSRC for many years. In two stints as the State Director of Assessment he constructed a valuable program and applied its principles to evaluating referees at a significant tournament -- the Region I Championships. The assessment of tournament officials has become a national model. Always focused on development, Ted has instructed, coached, and mentored many officials while sharing his obvious love for the game. The proclamation presented to him highlights Ted's "extraordinarily prodigious work on behalf of hundreds and hundreds of referees with dignity & class", his "splendid extravagance in pursuit of professionalism and Massachusetts State Referee Committee goals", and his "devotion to public and personal integrity."

Flannery Award - Ed Rae, Jr. of Westwood

At a recent presentation it was noted that "refereeing is an exercise in human relations." Ed understands this as well as anyone, bringing a valuable perspective to the program of referee development. As a mentor to many Ed has worked with regional delegations and others for several years to help bring them to higher levels of refereeing. Noted in his award presentation, Ed "stands for artful officiating, player orientation and respectfully smooth administrative dealings."

Flannery Award - Bob Purple of Newburyport

Bob has been involved in youth soccer for twenty years in Newburyport, serving as the youth soccer president for fifteen of those years. He serves as a referee assignor, has become involved at the Massachusetts Tournament of Champions, and continues to actively referee. Noted in the presentation, Bob "is a model of respectful officiating. He represents the fine art of the gentlemanly approach to the game."

Young Male referee of the Year - Kevin Sager of Hopkinton

Kevin has been a certified referee since 1998 and has made his mark at advanced tournaments including at the Region I tournament in July, 2003. A recent graduate of St. John's High School in Shrewsbury, he attends St. Joseph's College of Maine beginning in the fall of this year. Kevin was lauded for his "flawless mechanics, evidence of scholarship in Laws of the Game, frequent attendance at advanced clincs and learning opportunities and most for hard and conscientious work ethic."

Young Female referee of the Year - Mairin Robbins of Mendon

Mairin has been a certified referee for just two years, but quickly demonstrated her strength on and off the field In short time she has seized opportunities to travel out of state to the Region I ODP and SNICKERS Championships as well as to the Tampa (FL) Sunbowl and WAGS (VA) Tournaments. Noted in the presentation to her, Mairin "is distinctive. She exhibits all that is consistent with the best standards of Massachusetts referees."

Adult referee of the Year - Ed Shea of Fiskdale

Ed came to refereeing in USSF after years of work and accomplishment in the high school and college ranks. Inspired by Bob Ayers to join in the Spaulding Epoca tourney at the University of Massachusetts, Ed has gone on to much bigger competitions including the National Youth Championships 2001 in Indianapolis, IN, US Soccer Festival 2002 in Houston, TX after leading the MA delegation to the Region I SNICKERS Championships in 2001. Ed has worked in the adult ranks in Massachusetts and neighboring Connecticut and has earned his place on the selective list of referees working in the professional leagues in the area. Noted in the proclamation presented to him: "When his name is called to take the middle, it simply means the best. He is the man for all soccer seasons: among assignors, among peers, among players."

Administrator of the Year - Peter Johnson of Marlboro

Peter is an organized, dependable, and hard-working administrator who has developed strong relationships with area towns in his role as Area Referee Administrator. He has been involved in the development in the successful Grade 11 and new Grade 9 programs. A former president of Marlboro Youth Soccer, current USSF Instructor, current USSF Assignor, and referee, Peter's involvement is fueled by his love of the youth game. Speaking of his efficiency as an administrator, it is stated: "When dealing with this administrator, one feels like one can count on the result. Like dealing with the precision of West Point."

Assessor of the Year - Andy Rademaker of Framingham

Andy has been motivated to improve the quality of refereeing since his involvement in the 1980s. Andy assessed the men's under-20 Region I final at Erie, PA in 1997 and he achieved the grade of State Assessor in 1999. Inspired by the late Steve Kokolski Andy has used his own initiative and unique leadership style to gather the BAYS assessment program to greatness, with little fanfare or attention to himself. It is noted that "Hundreds of new and young referees receive feedback, encouragement and education due to his businesslike, and low-key approach. Due to his uncanny ability to get assessors to work hard for BAYS assessment goals, the program shines brilliantly, every season."

Instructor of the Year - Jim Livingston of Belmont

Jim started as a "soccer dad" in 1981 and gradually became more and more involved in the program in the next twenty years. As an instructor first in 1996, Jim is now an accomplished State Instructor. State Director of Instructor Ed Rae refers to Jim as "an ardent advocate for small-sided, recreational referee curricula" who has "viewed the wider picture" and seen "his steadfastness blossom, as he now presides over the USA's most successful Blue Badge instructional program."

Assignor of the Year - Jerry Morin of Salem

Jerry has been the referee assignor of youth soccer in Essex County since September of 1989! His loyalty to the program is remarkable, but it is his attention to quality that makes him worthy of this award. Noted in his presentation, Jerry "is a person, whose efforts now and in the many past seasons, have set a spectacular standard for assigning. He is the quintessential ingredient for good assigning. He always gives more than is required."