Women In Soccer Symposium & Awards Dinner
Women In Soccer was held on Monday, December 7th at the San Diego Marriott Del Mar and was a highly successful and totally sold out event with standing room only. The purpose? Celebrate & Plan – celebrate the amazing accomplishments of USA’s talented women in soccer and plan for an even brighter 2016 with more women involved in all aspects of soccer.
Related Article: Women In Soccer 2017 Symposium
The Women In Soccer event was held by Diane Scavuzzo, Editor of GoalNation and Carrie Taylor, Director of Coaching, Laguna United Football Club in San Diego on December 7th 2015.
Lynn Berling-Manuel, Lesle Gallimore, Chris Moore, Jeff Plush, Louise Waxler, Shannon MacMillan, Rosalie Kramm, Angela Hucles, Yvette Brown, Sam Snow, Steve Hoffman, Jerry Zanelli, Sally Grigoriev, Duncan Riddle and attendees from around the nation, came together to join Scavuzzo and Taylor to celebrate Women In Soccer and plan for the road ahead.
Leaders from the National Women’s Soccer League (NWSL), National Soccer Coaches Association of America (NSCAA), US Youth Soccer, Women’s Premier Soccer League (WPSL) and United States Adult Soccer Association (USASA) all spoke — and listened — at the Women In Soccer event.
All of the speakers traveled to San Diego at their own expense and no one was paid to speak. A true testament of their commitment to the cause.
“This was really an event that brought people together,” said Scavuzzo. “Everyone rolled up their sleeves and helped make this Women In Soccer symposium possible. We wanted to create change and that takes everyone working together – and the goal was to bring people from all different levels and organizations into one room and all talk.”
“The women in soccer event was better than we had even expected,” said Taylor. “There were attendees from all over the country and we even had participants from Mexico. The energy all day was fantastic. People were able to make connections and were able to discuss the challenges of women in soccer and set goals for the future.”
The one goal shared by all – to raise the overall number of women in soccer.
Far from a room of people who sat and listened, the Women In Soccer event was highly interactive and Q&A sessions throughout the afternoon.
Sessions such as Chris Moore‘s LEADERSHIP HAS NO GENDER and Sam Snow‘s lead panel on THE GRASS CEILING – SOCCER IN AMERICA USES ONLY HALF OF ITS TALENT matched the mindset of the female speakers who shared personal stories from their past as everyone discussed the THE IRONY – BEING THE BEST IN THE USA and why it is so important to PAY IT FORWARD. The bottom line was how everyone – from speakers, attendees and those we all know, could MAKE A DIFFERENCE.
Lynn Berling-Manuel, NSCAA
“It was inspiring to be with so many women in soccer and their male supporters examining the issues, exploring solutions and cheering each other on. The Women In Soccer symposium was an excellent step in helping women take leadership roles at all levels of soccer.”
Shannon MacMillan, Del Mar – Carmel Valley Sharks
“The Women in Soccer event was the first of hopefully many empowering symposiums. It was a great opportunity to network with confident and powerful women while brainstorming ways to encourage the next generation of female leaders.”
Rosalie Kramm – First Female Referee
“The Women in Soccer Symposium was important and timely. Now is the time to make changes in the soccer community and allow women to have the opportunity to succeed. I salute GoalNation for having the vision to create this event and bringing together powerful women and men in the world of soccer to start the conversation and set goals for the betterment of soccer in the USA.”
Duncan Riddle, United States Adult Soccer Association (USASA)
“The quality of the presentations led to valuable conversations regarding the issues faced by women in the game. We all left with a list of actions we need to take. And the list of goals continues to grow.”
Ruth Nicholson, Nicholson Facilitation & Associates
“Unlike other women focused events, enlightened men represented 50% of the speakers and a good percentage of the attendees. This isn’t about women wanting to invade the good old boys’ club. It is about finding ways for women and men to work together as full and respected members on the same team. For women to be respected, capable, and professional contributors in all aspects of the game – in the coaching ranks, in leadership and the boardroom, and in the operations and management of our sports organizations.”
Lucia Strojnik, Fieldoo
“It was without a doubt a success and I can only see the event growing every year. I think what made it stand out was how inclusive it was of both male and female professionals and talent ranging from high school players to highly accomplished university coaches and professional referees.”
Steve Hoffman, Cal South
“The Women In Soccer event was inspiring to me and all who attended, we all need to help grow our female coaching ranks in every way possible with so many girls playing the game we really need role models they can relate to.”
Bob Turner, Presidio Soccer League
“It was an awesome, much needed event. We all should work together to keep the momentum going. Presidio Soccer League, the largest youth soccer organization in San Diego, is proud to have a board that is equally made up of 50% men and women.”
Louise Lieberman, UCLA Women’s Soccer
“Creating awareness and finding a way to make a positive impact on women is paramount not only to the game we love, but to young women everywhere. I am honored to have been a part of this empowering and important event that will hopefully begin to make a change, for without change there can be no progress. Thank you.”
So what are the goals from the Women In Soccer symposium?
Here are some fabulous goals from attendees which will make the future brighter for women in soccer – and the game of soccer better for all.
Lesle Gallimore, University of Washington
“The Women In Soccer Summit was one of the best “feel good” and empowering events I’ve attended. It was well put together, topical and an outstanding opportunity for people with the same passion for women’s soccer to come together and network, share ideas and create goals for the coming year. My goal is to help increase the number of female coaches coaching youth teams in our country. The number is abysmally low and it needs to change.”
Derek Barraza, Cal South
“I have a few goals for 2016; I would like to have a Cal South female coach of the year. This is in addition to the award for Girls Youth Coach of the Year, which is often a male coach. I would also like to see more women coaches in Cal South including at the DOC/ADOC Level. I think there should be 50% women coaches and, I would like to see a woman as the next Cal South president. Plus, I would like to have a Cal South Women’s Coaches Association.”
Louise Waxler, McLean Youth Soccer
“The Women in Soccer Summit highlighted many of the leaders in our game who will help shape the future of women’s soccer in the U.S. and abroad. Everyone shared a piece of good news to create the pathway going forward. To quote Anne Frank, “The good news is that you don’t know how great you can be! What you can accomplish! And what your potential is!”
“To inspire more of our youth to dream big and teach them how to fulfill those dreams; bring premier sport and role models into the households around the country; provide player development and proper training techniques to our soccer communities and teams; and continue to build an infrastructure of capabilities and credibility for ourselves and our players – strengthening the fact that athletic opportunities for our young female players is flourishing and is here to stay.”
Yvette Brown, X! PROMOS
“The Women in Soccer symposium was an amazing bundle of inspiration jam-packed into a half-day event. I was humbled to be among such a strong group of advocates whose collective focus is simply leveraging soccer to empower women and girls to a position of gender equality. It was a great honor to share my marketing expertise; my hope is that it will lead to greater support of the cause. Professionally, I am inspired to “pay it forward” by creating a guide to help event participants find, acquire and activate brand sponsors to build mutually beneficial relationships.”
Jerry Zanelli, Women’s Premier Soccer League (WPSL)
“The event was a tremendous success, with standing room only. It gave us an opportunity to speak with the leaders of womens, adults and youth leagues and explain our success as the only league that has lasted 18 years. Growth has always been our goal as it provides women the opportunity to play almost anywhere in the U.S. We are looking to approach 90-100 teams this year.”
Sam Snow, US Youth Soccer
“US Youth Soccer supports the effort to increase the number of women in the ranks of coaches, referees and senior administrators as well as auxiliary positions, sports media for example, within the game of soccer. To that end we are providing a meeting space at the 2016 US Youth Soccer Workshop for a continuation of the Women In Soccer.”
Specifically, Snow committed to having US Youth Soccer offer a women-only National Youth Coaching Course in 2016. The details on the course are being decided at this time.
Next Up: On Saturday, January 16 from 2:15 to 3:15 at the US Youth Soccer Workshop at the NSCAA Convention, Carrie Taylor and Ruth Nicholson will host a Follow Up session in Room 321 in the convention center.
Olympic Gold WNT player, Rachel Van Hollebeke, received the Women In Soccer Trailblazer Award. Other recipients of the Women In Soccer Trailblazer Award included Lesle Gallimore, Lynn Berling-Manuel, Rosalie Kramm, Shannon MacMillan, Connie Bivens, Chris Moore, Sam Snow, Jerry Zanelli and Jeff Plush.
The Sponsors who made this possible:
The Women In Soccer Symposium would really like to thank the event sponsors who stepped up to help make this event possible. One of the costs was the strong desire to sponsor in part the event ticket for coaches. While business people may have the resources or the ability to expense the cost of attending an event like this, often soccer coaches do not. While the actual cost of the event was significantly more than the $75 price tag for coaches, both Taylor and Scavuzzo thought it was important to help offset the costs as much as possible.
Sponsors: GoalNation, NSCAA, US Youth Soccer, FC Heat, Cal South, Surf Cup Sports, Presidio Soccer League, Affinity Sports, Laguna United Football Club, Sports Pins International, Charlotte Moran Memorial Fund, The Futbol Factory, Advance Sports Technology, LNYSA, Press Cellars, Score Sports.
“From professional women’s soccer to the amateur game and from adult to youth – it is important that we all push for more opportunities for women in soccer, and change will happen,” said Scavuzzo.
Are you involved in soccer and inspired to make an impact? Share your Women In Soccer goal by email, Twitter (@Carrie1v1) or #WIS2015GOALS.
And, let’s all keep up the good intentions and good work! #WomenInSoccer!