USA Field Hockey Weekly Report-Week of May 30, 2011

May 31, 2011, 3:26 p.m. (ET)

USA Field Hockey Weekly Report-Week of May 30, 2011

Last week was a critical week for our high performance program. The Women’s National Championship at American University by all accounts was a great success with 102 women putting their all into striving to make the USA squad in this elite selection opportunity. The standard of play was impressive and it was inspiring to all that were there to see the growing depth of talent being created. These players skills have been honed from numerous playing experiences from high school, Futures, club, camps, college and the Olympic Pipeline programming. It is the whole game of field hockey that prepares these players to be as good as they are, and it is the whole game that can take pride in the achievement of players who make it to the very top and break into the USA team.

This year five 2010 National Development Team members (Torrie Albini, Michelle Cesan, Brianna Davies, Kathleen Sharkey and Pam Spuehler) were selected to join 23 existing members of the USA squad to train at the Olympic Training Center in Chula Vista and prepare for competition in the Champions Challenge in Ireland in June and the Pan Am Games in Mexico in October. These athletes have made it to the top from tens of thousands who try and now carry our hopes and I am confident will represent themselves and our country with distinction.

Congratulations to all those athletes who participated in the Womens National Championship. We admire your wonderful athleticism. You can all take pride in being part of such an elite group.

Cal Cup 40th anniversary event memorable. Cal Cup founder Tom Harris, event director Billie Ahluwalia, and FHF president Dave Jackson pulled off a spectacle Cal Cup this past weekend. They did it with what seemed a cast of thousands who turned out to help athletes, coaches and parents every step of the way. The Memorial Day Weekend event is known for its diversity in ethnic and gender participation with a huge recreational element as well as elite level play. The umpiring was superb, the organization for the event operated like a well-oiled machine, and the weather was perfect. Thanks to everyone involved and now on to Cal Cup 41.

Today we have completed publishing  USA Field Hockey 2010 Annual Report, which gives a summary of the activities we undertook throughout 2010. Some of the highlights include a summary of our key financial information, with our accounts showing a surplus of $247,942 (as displayed on the 2010 IRS 990 tax form), a continuation of the development of elite premier events, an enhanced provision of member communications with regular email, improved website and the commitment to the much improved magazine Field Hockey Life. The Annual Report also summarizes the activity of all our elite teams and we also take the opportunity to recognize the very generous support of the many donors who enable us to provide an ever-broader array of programs and services to develop our sport. Please do take the opportunity to read and I welcome all feedback.

Annual Report Cover

So, what about that The Glorious Black Number $247,942? For the first time in eight years, USFHA has shown a positive net dollar outcome after an entire fiscal year’s operation. Our black net dollar number of $247,942  for FY 2010 contrasts with the red number $142,143 from the 2009 fiscal year, a shift of $390,085 . There are many reasons why this transition has taken place. Much credit must be given to the entire USA Field Hockey staff for the efforts made throughout the year to focus on the efficient use of resources whilst continuing to conduct premium events and programs. You can see the results as you look at the glorious black number. Our staff continues to concentrate on efficiency with an eye toward high quality in all that we do.

USA Field Hockey is a not-for-profit organization, so, does that mean we should not make a profit? Absolutely we should. In light of our deficient spending over the many past years, our reserves have eroded. It is our responsibility as an organization to provide sustainability and stability. Typically in not-for-profit corporations the standard used is to create an unrestricted reserve of half of the corporate operation’s annual budget. Our current operating budget is $6,936,228, and our unrestricted current reserve is $1,970,650 Reserves are a set aside for the eventual rainy day as a buffer and as a buffer for extraordinary financial events that may happen in the life of an organization. Reserves are not meant to just simply warehouse money.

Today we are financially healthy, but we need to be just a smidgen healthier.

USA Field Hockey to formulate a new service group One of the most valuable services any professional can provide to an Olympic sport national governing body (NGB) is legal expertise. Legal expertise ranges from legal understandings of contracts, insurance, risk management, governance, and a full range of legal circumstances that NGBs face from time to time. In my experiences in working with other NGBs, we have always set up a Legal Working Group that was put in place to provide advisory information to both the Board of Directors and staff of the organization. The key was the provision of service, and normally the bill was gratis or severely discounted. Also, there was/is the possibility of the provision of tax relieving documentation to those who provided service as value in kind. We would like to institute such a group within USA Field Hockey. If you are an attorney and are interested in providing periodic service I would like to hear from you. My email address is

Conan: ‘The preacher who predicted the apocalypse several weekends ago now predicts that the world will end in October. It’s the first time that someone’s end-of-the-world prediction was followed by “Have a great summer.” '

Have a great week!

Steve Locke
Executive Director
USA Field Hockey