Our purpose is to serve athletes by offering cost-free, confidential and independent advice regarding opportunities and rights to participate in protected competition, and the various policies and procedures associated with participating in sport at an elite level. We are committed to helping athletes navigate communication lines with National Governing Bodies and the United States Olympic & Paralympic Committee, and mediate conflicts as they arise. We are independent in our ability to give advice to athletes, yet uniquely positioned within the leadership of the USOPC and Athletes Advisory Council to understand and advocate for the interests of athletes.

Following are typical issues on which the Athlete Ombudsman Office assists athletes:

  • Athlete rights
  • Team selection
  • Anti-doping
  • Access to services
  • Athlete agreements, codes of conduct, direct athlete support agreements
  • Commercial terms
  • Citizenship and other eligibility concerns
  • SafeSport
  • Athletes’ voice in the governance of sport
  • Ted Stevens Act, USOPC and NGB bylaws and policies, International Olympic Committee and International Paralympic Committee rules and guidelines
  • Informally resolving disputes with coaches, administrators or other athletes
  • Pursuing a formal grievance
With each of the above issues, it is important that athletes have a resource they can trust. When offering advice, the Athlete Ombudsman Office is bound by its duty of confidentiality to athletes. Athletes should feel free to contact the office in order to talk through concerns and questions candidly, and seek independent and confidential advice. If called upon to help mediate a dispute with a coach, NGB, USOPC staff member or others, Kacie and Sara will work with the athlete to determine what and when to share sensitive information that is necessary to resolve the issue.

Athlete Ombudsman Office

Phone: 888-ATHLETE
Kacie Wallace, Athlete Ombudsman
Emily Azevedo, Assistant Athlete Ombudsman

Christine Jennings, Coordinator