Executive Director Weekly Report

Aug. 14, 2013, 11:02 a.m. (ET)

USA Field Hockey Board of Directors Meets at The Nook This past weekend served as a first look for many USA Field Hockey Board members of The Nook, USA Field Hockey's new Home of Hockey. To say the least, they were dazzled at the quality and massive size of the facility. The office/locker room(s)/offices/video review and trainer rooms are nearing completion. The women's national team administrative and training area inside the complex encompasses in excess of 20,000 square feet. The first turf should be completed by September 1st...weather permitting, and the second turf with a dome is slated for completion by Thanksgiving. The inside area also provides for ten indoor courts that can also convert into two full sized international courts, or can be carpeted. All in all, totally impressive.

The Board, besides touring the facility, spent a massive amount of time brainstorming issues at hand for USA Field Hockey. The issues...which included an assessment of the USA Field Hockey Men's High Performance Program, the launch of the newly created Safe Sport program, and the reconstitution of the Board for the USA Field Hockey Foundation along with its purpose are all complex issues. The discussions are continuing and as outcomes are determined, they will be reported in subsequent Weekly Reports. 

A feature at the weekend's Board meeting was the presentation made by new women's national team coach Craig Parnham, and new Director of Performance Science Dave Hamilton. Both highlighted that the team was populated with gifted athletes. The speed on the team was a huge asset. However, there is much work to be completed and they delved into the types of approaches they are employing and reiterated that international competition is unlike any other with its intensity and that they will continue to report in practical terms our realistic projected outcomes as we move closer and closer to the possibility of qualifying for Rio. The Board is totally engaged with the team and this new group of high performance professionals.

Congratulations Jon Ginolfi The U.S. Men’s Team is currently in Brampton, Ontario competing in the Pan American Cup. Due to a last minute scheduling change, our first opponent was Argentina, the highest  ranked team at the tournament. Argentina defeated Mexico 13-2 in the Pan Am Cup opener and scored eight goals on us in our opening match. Next up was Uruguay, who we beat 12-0. Jon Ginolfi earned his 100th cap with the U.S. Men’s Team and became the youngest player in the men’s program to achieve this major milestone at the age of 24. Congratulations Jon. Our final opponent in pool play will be Mexico tomorrow. All matches are being streamed live on panamhockey.org.

It is a sad day for USA Field Hockey. August 21st will be the last day on the job for USAFH Communications Manager Ashley Meunier. The United States Olympic Committee (USOC) will be Ashley's next stop along her career progression. Ashley has been just the most productive Communications Manager ever. She is one of the best within all the national governing bodies of sport and the USOC readily recognized her talents. She has actually been a mainstay for the USOC as they transformed many of their communication platforms through her guidance. The new look website was her baby and the new look magazine was a collaborative effort with Ashley as the driver and DITA's Sandy Kinnee providing inspiration from an artist's perspective. The website is designed to provide timely news. The magazine is meant to be a coffee table piece with good quality paper, great photography and interesting profiles and training ideas. Both have gone over well. Those two initiatives are only the tip of the iceberg of what Ashley has produced over her three years with USAFH. She is a top-shelf professional and will be a great asset for the USOC...and us...as we look toward the future. 

Last month we launched our first ever digital campaign, Grow the Game.  All gifts designated to our Grow the Game campaign will make a direct impact on increasing opportunities for men, children and post-collegiate athletes, while developing coaches and umpires, and exposing the game in non-tradition locations.  Now is your chance to honor someone that has made an everlasting impact on your life and the sport of field hockey.  Make a gift in honor of the coach that taught you how to play or the parent that never missed a game.  Now is your chance to invest in the future of hockey! For morre information about ways you can get involved, please visit http://bit.ly/1dA3k99

The 2013 National Rules Briefing is now available for viewing on usafieldhockey.com. Presented by our Director of Umpiring, Steve Horgan, the briefing has been divided into four segments and I invite not only umpires, but coaches and players to view all four videos to get a better understanding of the rules of the game. Rulebooks are available for purchase on usafieldhockey.com or by clicking here.

Have a great week!

Steven Locke
Executive Director
USA Field Hockey