New staff join USA Curling national office

By Terry L. Davis | July 27, 2017, 12:16 p.m. (ET)

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

July 27, 2017

USA Curling announces new hires

(STEVENS POINT, Wis.) – The United States Curling Association is proud to announce the hiring of Ron Rossi (Lake Placid, N.Y.) as controller and Heather Houck (Stevens Point, Wis.) as bookkeeper/office manager at its national office in Stevens Point, Wis.

A member of the 1984 U.S. Olympic luge team, Rossi served as executive director and chief executive officer for USA Luge (1985-2013) and comes to USA Curling with an immense amount of knowledge working for an Olympic national governing body. As controller, Rossi’s job duties include managing accounting, budgeting, grant compliance/reporting, audits and some human resources functions. He is also responsible for identifying and managing the implementation of procedural changes designed to improve internal controls, departmental efficiencies, and financial reporting.

Rossi replaces outgoing controller Tom Doherty, who joined USA Curling in 2015 and will be returning to New York.

Houck comes to USA Curling as a recent graduate of Mid-State Technical College’s accounting and business administration program. She will replace Simone LaMarche, who is moving to Madison, Wis., and pursuing a new job opportunity.

“We welcome Heather and Ron to the USA Curling National Office team, and believe that their skills and expertise are great additions as we continually strive to make USA Curling the best that it can be,” said Rick Patzke, USA Curling’s chief executive officer. “Personnel changes are always challenging, especially in organizations like ours with a small staff. Tom and Simone will be greatly missed, and we wish them all the best as they start the next chapters of their lives. We are fortunate to have a two-week transition period as they transfer their knowledge of USA Curling business to their successors.”

There is one more vacancy yet to be filled, as Mike Dellemann left the USCA earlier this month to pursue a new job opportunity.

“Now that these critical financial positions are filled, I will be able to focus on the hiring process for a person to succeed Mike in the deputy manager position, which is a critical support role to allow me to maximize the time and attention I can give to revenue development and the other strategic initiatives prioritized by the USCA Board of Directors,” said Patzke.

Rossi helped guide USA Luge from a sports organization with little international success to one boasting five Olympic medals to date. With a strong background in managing the business side of a sports organization, Rossi’s experience will help strengthen the national office’s management team. A graduate of Manhattan College with a bachelor’s degree in electrical engineering, Rossi also served as CEO of the United States Luge Foundation, Inc. A native of New York, Rossi and his wife, Susan – who was a member of the 1984 Canadian Olympic team – have two children. Rossi will work remotely from his home in Lake Placid.

“I am looking forward to attacking the challenges that will come with this new role, but more importantly, I hope that I can put my prior experiences in the Olympic Movement to good use to help the organization with its efforts to win Olympic medals,” Rossi said. “I appreciate the confidence Rick has shown in me for not only the job to be done, but also for allowing me to work remotely from my home in Lake Placid.”

Houck, a native of Stevens Point, previously worked for a law company as an office assistant. She graduated with Dean’s List honors from Mid-State this spring with dual associate’s degrees in applied sciences accounting and business management. While new to the sport of curling, Houck was a long time equestrian competitor in the National Pony of the Americas circuit.

“I am very excited to be joining the United States Curling Association team. I am looking forward to getting to know the sport and everyone involved,” Houck said.

The U.S. Curling Association office is headquartered in Stevens Point, Wis., and is the national governing body for the Olympic sport of curling and Paralympic sport of wheelchair curling. The association has seven full-time staff members at the Wisconsin office in addition to the High Performance Program staff.

The association has more than 170 member clubs in 43 U.S. states with approximately 20,000 members.

USA Curling is sponsored by AtomOS, Nike, Brooms Up Curling Supplies, CryoMAX 8-Hour Cold Pack, Sitrin, The RAM Restaurant & Brewery, BalancePlus, and Brakebush, and is partnered with Thorne Research, Laurie Artiss Ltd. – The Pin People, United Airlines, 12th End Sports Network, and CurlingZone.

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For more information: Terry Davis, Director of Communications, terry.davis@usacurl.org, 608-338-9900 (mobile) or 715-344-1199, Ext. 202 (office).