Milton Aimi (1926, Brazil)
The first chairman of the United States Senior Soccer Division, Inc., Milton Aimi was a tireless founder of soccer clubs and associations, providing a critical impetus to the development of soccer in
Texas. In 1947, he founded the
College soccer team and began playing for amateur teams in Dallas-Ft. Worth. He founded the Fort Worth International Soccer Club in 1952 and the first parochial soccer program in the region in 1955. Moving to
Houston in 1967, Aimi was appointed Youth Commissioner for the
South Texas region, and was one of the primary founders of the Houston District Junior Soccer Association in 1968, serving as president from 1972-1978. He was instrumental in forming the first Youth Soccer Referee Association in 1970. In 1972 he was elected president of the Texas State Soccer Association. Under his guidance, the state association grew from two to 20 leagues with 399 senior teams, the second largest adult State Association in the country. In 1979 he was appointed to the National Referee Committee of the USSF and became the Region III Director. In 1982 he was elected vice-president of the national body and then chairman of the USSF Senior Division, responsible for the administration of USSF programs for all 50 states. He was appointed in 1987 by the USSF to organize and administer a National Under 23 Player Development Program (Select Team Program), and in 1988 was once again the USSF vice president and chairman of the USSF Amateur Division.
Mario H. Alarcon (1931, Bolivia)
Mario was honored at the age of 14 as the youngest soccer player in to reach third division level. Moving to
Miami, he formed the first league in the southeastern, the Miami Soccer League, and became its first president. He was reelected to that office for seven terms. He organized the first State Referee Program in 1958. He was a player and coach of “All Star” teams representing
Florida in competition with foreign teams, achieving league championships in each club he represented. In 1963 he directed
Florida’s affiliation to the USSF and became its first representative. In 1990 he co-wrote, started and tested the National Referee Assignors Program throughout the country, a program which grows in membership each year and was adopted nationally in 1996. He simultaneously served USSF, NISOA, Florida Youth and Florida Adult Amateur, serving in every position for FSSA from president to executive secretary. He also served as the State Referee Administrator, State Director of Instruction and the first State Director of Assessments. He has been honored as a Life Member in the Florida State Soccer Association Hall of Fame, the Florida Youth Soccer Association Hall of Fame, the Florida State Referees Hall of Fame, National Intercollegiate Soccer Officials Association and the United States Soccer Federation’s Referee Program.
John O. Best (1912-1996, England)
Former vice president of the USSF from 1967-1974 and again from 1976-1979, John was best known as a referee. He came to the
Chicago area in 1929 and played on a number of amateur teams until 1936 when he became involved with refereeing, and rose quickly among the ranks. A FIFA certified referee (1948-1963), he was a linesman at the 1948 Olympic Games in
London and a referee at the 1955 Pan American Games in where he handled 10 games in 12 days. He officiated at 33 international games around the world. He was the first referee to receive FIFA’s coveted, “Special Award” for service in at least 20 international matches and extensive administrative work. Named Commissioner of the California Soccer Association – South in 1962, John was instrumental in getting the California Soccer Association affiliated with the United States Football Association and served on the team that created two state associations for
Graham C. Biles (1937, United States)
After 29 years of service in the U.S. Air Force, Graham retired as a Lieutenant Colonel. In 1964 he began playing soccer in the Air Force and on club teams. In 1967 he became a coach of youth and adult teams and was instrumental in starting soccer, and coaching, in
Mt. Home, Idaho , at Nellis AFB in
Nevada and at Hollomon AFB in
New Mexico. He became a referee in 1978 and became the referee assignor for the Las Vegas Silver Mug Tournament. He attended referee instructor and assessor schools in 1983. Graham has served at all levels of soccer: as a league president, state board member, state president, regional treasurer, coach, referee, player, instructor and assessor.
Gianfranco Borroni (1937, Italy)
Gianfranco came to the
Cleveland, Ohio area in 1947 after a successful semiprofessional career in Italy. He played with the Lake Erie Soccer League for 18 years and coached at all levels for more than 20 years. He has been an officer at the national, regional, state, league and club levels and continues to serve as the Ohio Soccer Association-North vice-president. He organized the Cleveland Stars and Cleveland Cobras of the American Soccer League from 1972 to 1983. Gianfranco became the Region II Director in the early 80’s, serving for nearly a decade. He was elected
USASA Chairman from 1991 to 1997 and served on the USSF NBOD. He was a founding member of the
USASA and of the Soccer Festival. He has an “A” coaching license and has coached at the high school and college level. In 1978 and 1981 he was honored as the NAIA District 22 Coach of the Year. Gianfranco is now
USASA’s representative to the U.S. Soccer Foundation.
James Carson (1935, Scotland)
A beloved figure in Region II, Jimmy has been president of Indiana State Soccer Association for 23 years, continuing even today as one of the longest serving state presidents. In 1967, Jimmy immigrated to the United States and worked as a machinist and inspector for General Motors before retiring in 2000, after 25 years of service. He first became involved with soccer in the in 1968 when he helped form the British American Football Club. For five years he served as the Secretary of the Central Indiana Soccer Association. He served on the
USASA Credentials Committee for four years and as the Region II Select Team Administrator for six years. He also served on the
USASA Budget Committee for six years. He has been an active member of the
USASA since its inception.
Clive Charles (1951-2003, England)
Clive played in the English Premier league before moving to
Oregon and playing with the NASL Portland Timbers from 1978-1982. A three time NASL All-Star, he was named to the all time NASL team by Pele. He was the only player to have his number retired by the Portland Timbers. He is best known as a coach for his
Portland teams. He won over 70 per cent of his games and went to the NCAA playoffs 17 times. He was the second college coach to lead both Men’s and Women’s teams to the NCAA final four in the same season. His women’s team won the 2002 National Championship. He served as the USSF Coach of the U-20 women and U-23 men, where the team received a bronze medal at the Pan Am Games in 1999. He was an assistant coach of the men’s national team during the 1998 World Cup period. At this time he was also executive director of a large youth club, and was one of the best soccer broadcasters and analysts this country has ever seen, working for ESPN during World Cup 1994. He coached OASA’s Select Team, winning Donnelly Cup titles for both Men and Women in 1996.
George F. Donnelly (1918-1990, United States)
USASA Select Team program’s Donnelly Cup is named after this dedicated organizer, coach and administrator. Donnelly was the president of the National Soccer League of New York from 1966 to 1971, and president of the Eastern New York Senior Soccer Association (1972 to 1977). He founded the Eastern New York Youth Soccer Association. From 1978-1985, he served on the USSF appeals committee. He was president (1982-1985) of the Cosmopolitan Soccer League and managed (1985) the
College soccer team, winners of the gold medal in the All Nepal Football Cup. He was a member of the U.S. National Team Delegation to the 1988 Olympic Games in South Korea. Donnelly was a regional director for five years, from 1985 until his death.
Paul W. Dueker (1954, United States)
Paul has been a soccer enthusiast, serious student and fan of the international game. He has attended World Cup games in Espana, 1992; Mexico, 1986; USA, 1994; and Germany, 2006. In 1982, he began playing for the Kutis Soccer Club in
St. Louis, Missouri until 1997. He was the starting goalkeeper for national championship teams in 1986 in the U.S. Open Cup, and in 1995 in the Men’s Over-30 Cup. In 1983, Kutis was the finalist in the Open Cup games and in 1997 was again the finalist in the US Men’s 0-30 cups. In April 1986, during the CONCACAF Club Qualifying round, Kutis beat Monterrey FC on aggregate 0-1 and 3-1. Dueker is still active in soccer as a Referee, grade 8. He has been an
College referee for five years and a local high school referee in
St. Louis for seven years.
Gene Edwards (1917–2000, United States)
Gene played for the Swedish American team in
Chicago and for the Milwaukee Sport Club, winning
Wisconsin championships in 1953 and 1955. He was President of the Wisconsin Soccer Association from 1959-69 and moved to serve as the vice-president of the USSF from 1969-74, when Gene assumed the presidency of the USSF in 1974. He served FIFA and worked to bring Olympic Games to the
Soviet Union and to
Seoul, Korea. He served as a member of the Executive Committee of the US Olympic Committee and the Los Angeles Olympic Organizing Board in 1984. The success of the 1984 Los Angeles Olympic Games laid the ground work for future World Cup bids. In 1982 FIFA had rejected the USSF bid to host the 1986 World Cup. When the USSF had its office in
New York and couldn’t meet its payroll, Gene went to the bank and took out a mortgage on his home to keep them open. In 1984, Gene lost the presidency of the USSF and served as Vice President to CONCACAF and Past President of the USSF. He worked to bring the World Cup to the United States, and the dream that had eluded the
USASA in 1982 was finally realized in 1988 when FIFA awarded the World Cup for 1994.
Mike Edwards (1952, United States)
Mike Edwards has served as treasurer of the Albuquerque Soccer League since 1987. He founded the ASL with 16 men’s teams and developed the league into 90 men’s teams, 70 coed teams, 12 Over-30 teams and a semi-professional office. He has served as the state president (1987-1996); treasurer (1996-2000) and registrar (2001- present) of the New Mexico State Soccer Association. During his tenure he grew the state’s two leagues into 12 and added six state tournaments. In 1995-1997, he served as the Vice-Chairman of
USASA, and was elected Chairman in 1997, a post he held longer than anyone else. He has served as a regional cup commissioner (3 years), national cup chair (3 years) and on the USSF Competitions Committee, chairing it the first year the pros played. Mike is currently serving as the USSF Vice-President.
John Ellinger (1951, United States)
Former U.S. Men’s U-17 National Team Coach John Ellinger was named as the first head coach of Salt Lake Real on October 6, 2004, bringing with him an impeccable reputation for grooming young talents. John began his coaching career as head coach at Montgomery College (MD) in 1979, leading his squad to a No. 5 ranking in 1980, before moving on to a nine-year stint at University of Maryland-Baltimore County from 1981 to 1990. John is among the most successful coaches of the U.S. Men’s National Teams’ program history. He led his squad to a fourth place finish in the 1999 FIFA U-17 World Championships, boasting the best finish at an U-17 World Championship in the 21-year history of the U.S. program. The loss to in the consolation game ended a 15-month, 25 match unbeaten streak, the longest in the history of any U.S. Soccer Men’s National Team program. John served as an assistant coach of the MLS’ Columbus Crew in the League’s inaugural season in 1996 and is now coaching Salt Lake Real as a 12-year veteran of the of the U.S. Soccer Men’s National Team. Ellinger was the
USASA Men’s National Team coach from 1988-1997 and Chair of the Coaching Committee from 1992-1997.
Tom Fitzgerald (1951-2004, United States)
Tom was quickly promoted from assistant coach in 1996 to the Columbus Crew head coach position. He led the team to a 9-1 record over the last 10 games of the season. He coached the team to the 1998 U.S. Open Cup finals before leaving the Crew in 2001. After playing and graduating from the
South Florida in 1974, his first head coaching job was
High School (1978-1981) where he led the team to two district championships with a 35-11-6 record. In 1981, the
Tampa hired him as an assistant coach, promoting him to head coach in 1987. He coached the team to five Sunshine State Conference championships and a Division II Men’s Soccer title in 1994. During his nine years as
Tampa’s head coach, he had a 75% winning percentage, posting a record of 132-32-11. He left the Crew to coach the Division I UCLA Bruins, leading the team to a National Championship. He was the first NCAA Division I coach to win a title in his first year with a program and only the third coach to win NCAA titles in Divisions I and II. During the 1990’s, Tom was a coach of, and very active in, the
USASA Select Team program. He was named the NSCAA/Adidas national coach of the year. He returned to
Florida in 2004. While scouting players at a youth soccer festival, his motorcycle was struck by an SUV. He died soon afterwards.
Jack Flamhaft (1905–1977, United States)
Jack played soccer in the
New York City
High Schools and attended
University. He was the guiding light for New York Hakoah for more than 30 years. While attending law school in 1928, he became a delegate to the old New York State Football Association and held high office for many years. He was a delegate to the American League since 1935, and he served five years as president before being elected as the USSF president from 1959-1961. He was responsible for numerous laws and the constitution and bylaws of the USSFA. He represented the USSFA in litigation at the Supreme Court and the Court of Appeals of the State of
New York, in which the prerogatives, power and authority of the USSFA were challenged.
Stephen Flamhaft (1938, United States)
Steve Flamhaft graduated from law school in 1994 with a Juris Doctor in 1964. Steve played pro-soccer with the American Soccer League and received an honorable mention as an All-American. In 1965 and 1969 he played with the U.S. Maccabiah team and in 1963-1964, with the U.S. Pan American Olympic Team. In 1999 he became the general manager of the Staten Island Vipers, a “A” league team, and coached the U.S. Team Maccabiah in
Santiago, Chile in 2005. He was named a FIFA Match Commissioner that same year. Steve has served the United States Soccer Federation as a member of the national board of directors, rules committee, chairman of the appeals committee and as regional director. He has been a member of the US Soccer Hall of Fame committee and served as chairman of the Legacy Tour, a subcommittee of the New York Host Committee for World Cup 1994. Steve is the legal counsel and serves on the rules committee to the Eastern New York State Soccer Association. He has been the legal counsel of
USASA and is currently a member of the USSF Builders Award Committee, as well as the oversight and member grants committees of the U.S. Soccer Foundation. He is a board of director member for U.S. Sports for and was elected into the New York State Soccer Hall of Fame.
Werner Fricker (1936-2001, Yugoslavia)
Werner Fricker immigrated to the in 1952. He captained the Philadelphia German-Hungarians from 1958 to 1969, winning the 1965 U.S. Amateur Cup. He was a defensive midfielder for the team in qualifying for the 1964 Olympics. More than anything, Werner was a builder, professionally and individually. In 1984, Werner became president of USSF, an organization that was broke. By the end of his tenure in 1990, the had won the bid to host the 1994 World Cup. Fricker had personally guaranteed the line of credit that financed the full-time national team program, created by USSF in the late 1980’s because the nation was without a pro league. Long before the prospect of a hosted World Cup, Werner was a man of action - going forward with projects despite the insolvency of USSF. He presided over the launch of the women’s national team in 1985 and the formation of the boys U-17 program. In 1981, as vice-president, he had master-minded the start of the U-20 program. It was Werner who signed the agreement with Soccer USA Partners, turning the Federation into a viable business, generating millions and millions of dollars. In 1990 the made its first World Cup appearance in 40 years. Werner laid the groundwork for our progression as a soccer nation. In 2002, the USSF created the
Werner Fricker Builder’s Award in memory of his contributions.
Robert (Bob) Gansler (1941, United States)
Bob Gansler was head coach of the U.S. Men’s National Team which qualified the for the 1990 World Cup. A premier player in the 1960’s, he appeared 25 times for the U.S. National Team, participating in the 1968-69 World Cup team trying to qualify for the 1970 World Cup games. He captained the 1964 and 1968 Olympic Teams as well as the 1967 Pan American team. In 2000, he received the Walt Chyzowych Award for achievement and dedication to the growth of soccer. In the North American Soccer League, he played every minute of every game in a 32 game season. He won 12 state championships with the Wisconsin State Amateur League from 1960-1976. He was selected as the 2000 MLS Coach of the Year while coaching the K.C. Wizards. He served as head coach for the Milwaukee Rampage of the United Soccer Leagues from 1996-1998, leading his team to the A-League Championship in 1997 and served as head coach at the
Milwaukee (1984-1988), and as the coach of the U.S. Under-20 National Team (1987-1989) and the Under-19 National Team (1979-1982). Bob has a USSF “A” License in Coaching. He has been a national instructor for the USSF and the National Soccer Coaches Association since 1975. In 1994 he was named a FIFA Instructor.
Mike Kabanica (1925–1997, Yugoslavia)
Mike Kabanica was an outstanding player and served as the Wisconsin Soccer Association State Coach, coaching all-star teams in the 1960’s. As an administrator he served as the Wisconsin Games Commissioner and was elected the Wisconsin State President in 1972, serving in the position until his death in 1997. Mike expanded leagues for adult and youth programs as well as coaching programs. He served as a State Association Board Member from 1972-1997 and as a member of the USSF Appeals Committee. The Midwest Region Tournament of Champion Men’s Trophy was named after Mike for his work in Region II, until
Wisconsin retired the trophy after three championships. Inducted into the Wisconsin Soccer Association Hall of Fame in 1986, he was also inducted into the United States Soccer Hall of Fame in 1997 for his contributions to the growth and development of soccer. Mike served as the Wisconsin State Association President for 25 years, working continually to improve and expand the growth of the game in
Kurt Lamm (1919-1987, Germany)
Kurt began playing at the age of nine as a goalkeeper for the Fussball Club Schmalnau (Rhoen) in Germany. He arrived in the United States on August 14, 1936 and three days later joined the Prospect Unity Club, starring as a fullback. At the start of World War II, he joined New York Americans and in 1944 became a member of Eintract of the German-American League and won a U.S. Amateur Cup medal. He returned to Prospect Unity in 1946 as player manager and in 1952 ended his playing career at age 32. One year later he became secretary of New York Hakoah and the club won three successive American Soccer League championships from 1955 to 1958. In 1957 the team reached the U.S. Open Cup final only to lose to St. Louis Kutis. Twice voted ASL Manager of the Year, he was a manager-coach of many of the ASL All-Star teams of his era. In 1959 he became vice-president of the ASL and president from 1963-1968. He served as the Executive Secretary of the USSFA from 1971 to 1987. The men’s amateur cup trophy is named in his memory.
Fritz L. Marth (1935-2002, Germany)
Fritz was involved with soccer his entire life and had an uncanny memory of everything soccer. He was a devoted fan of Rot-Weiss Essen, a club still in existence today. Within days of his arrival in the United States, Fritz became a member of the Hoboken Soccer Football Club (Bergen Kickers) where he served the club as a player, administrator and manager. Actively involved in the Cosmopolitan Soccer League, Fritz served as the Secretary General and 1st Vice President receiving Secretary Emeritus/Life Member status in 2002. He was elected a life member and was voted into the New Jersey Soccer Association Hall of Fame in 1987, after serving as 1st Vice President and President (1967-1972). He was voted a Life Member of the Eastern New York Soccer Association in 1986 and inducted into their Hall of Fame in 1997. Fritz was a dedicated volunteer to the USSF and served as the Region I Cups Commissioner, Registrar and as Region I Director prior to being hired as the first Administrator of the
USASA from 1983-2002. He was voted a life member of the USSF in 2002.
Gerhard Mengel (1929, Germany)
Gerhard played semi-professionally in
Europe before immigrating to the
Detroit area where he was a player, coach and manager of the Carpathia Kickers, earning four consecutive league championships. As coach, he brought home the first USSF national amateur championship won by a
Michigan team. He founded the first amateur league, the first youth summer league and the local referee association, serving as an officer in all three. Recipient of the Region II Pat Smith Referee Award, he was inducted into the 1975 Michigan Amateur Sport Hall of Fame, 1985 Michigan Soccer Hall of Fame and 2002 Michigan Youth Soccer Hall of Fame. He was elected MSA President in 1997. After 15 years as a regional cup commissioner, he was appointed National Cup Chairman in 1997 and appointed to the USSF Open Cup committee in 1998, positions he still holds today. The national men’s O30 competition was renamed the Gerhard Mengel Men’s Over-thirty national cup in 2004 and in 2005, he received the
Werner Fricker Builders Award.
Sviatoslav “Stan” Mirza (1938, Ukraine)
While serving as the Minnesota State President, Stan formed state teams to compete in the Region II competition and was involved in making the regional women’s program a success. Appointed as the Amateur Division “B” team head coach, he took his team to Germany and conducted a series of coaching clinics, followed by a tour of Ireland. His “B” team beat England and Scotland and tied Ireland. Stan has a class “A” coaching license from the USSF and was coach at the
St. Thomas. He played soccer and rugby in high school and for the “Lions” soccer club in
South Australia. In 1998 Stan moved to the and played for Kiev Soccer Club, the Tigers Uke Club and for the U.S. Army 82nd Airborne Division and 1st Cavalry Division. In 1964 he played for the Kickers Club in
Wisconsin, winning a state championship and coached the Cougars Soccer Club to the Minnesota Open Cup championship. Stan was the
USASA Women’s Coach for over a decade, beginning in 1989.
John Motta (1957, United States)
John played youth, high school and amateur soccer from 1971 - 1986. He received a USSF National “C” License while coaching the Nashua World Cup Soccer Boys U19 to a championship, and a U-17 ODP team for the New Hampshire Soccer Association. In 1986 he became a referee and is currently a State One Referee and Assessor. He has officiated from the youth soccer to the MLS Assistant Referee level. John served as President of the New Hampshire Soccer Association for ten years and is credited with helping combine
New Hampshire’s youth and amateur divisions. A former USSF Vice-President (1998-2000) he has served as chairman of the USSF Referee Committee, US Soccer Foundation Board of Directors, and USSF Head of Delegation for the Women’s National Team at the Algarve Cup in Portugal. John has served as chairman of the Lamar Hunt Open Cup Committee and the USSF National Referee Committee. He has been the
USASA Referee Committee Chairman since 2002. He is a 50 per cent owner of the New Hampshire Phantoms of the USISL D3 Pro Division.
Edward N. Nunez (1933-2003, Costa Rica)
Ed was an officer, coach and player in the San Joaquin Valley Soccer League until elected Executive President of California Soccer Association North in 1980, a position he served for 10 years. During his tenure, the first women’s soccer league was affiliated and grew to four leagues with teams participating in State and National Cups. Nunez was inducted into the CSAN Hall of Fame in 1985. Ed served as the first Region IV Director from 1981-84 and was then elected Vice-President of USSF, and
USASA’s second Chairman, serving from 1984-1989. On retiring from the State and National soccer scene, he coached and played in the
Kevin Payne (1953, United States)
Kevin has over 15 years experience at the highest levels in the soccer industry. In 1989, Kevin became the national administrator for the U.S. Soccer Federation. In the fall of 1990, he was named Deputy Executive Director and Director of Marketing for the Federation. Kevin left the Federation in 1991 to work for Soccer USA Partners (SUSAP/API Soccer) and was named its president in early 1994. Kevin worked with a charter group of investors on the creation of Major League Soccer (MLS). He put together the original investment group for D.C. United and served as the President and General Manager of the team from inception to 2001. In 2001 he joined AEG as Senior Vice President and Managing Director of AEG Soccer which oversaw six MLS teams. In 2004 he returned to DC United as President and CEO. He is a member of the Board of Governors of MLS and sits on the Marketing and Competition committees of the league. He serves on the Board of Directors of the U.S. Soccer Federation, and is a board member of United for D.C. He is also a founding Board Member of the Greater Washington Sports Alliance.
Peter J. Peel (1866-1960, Ireland)
Peter came to the to visit the Chicago World’s Fair in 1893 and stayed. He was an outstanding soccer, rugby, cricket and tennis player. He was elected the first president of the Illinois State Association and in 1909 donated the oldest soccer trophy in the country. First used as a fund raiser for injured players, the Peel Cup is emblematic of the
State champions. He became president of the USFA in 1917-1919 and during the First World War traveled the country with a team of Belgian soldiers to raise funds for war organizations. In 1924, during his second term as president of the USFA, he was in charge of the Olympic team which played in
Paris and later in England, Germany, Ireland, Poland and Switzerland. He has been the subject of many national magazine articles. He was inducted into the National Hall of Fame in 1951 and the Illinois Soccer Hall of Fame in 1983.
Foster Perry (1923, United States)
Still actively involved at the state, regional and national levels of
USASA, Foster began as an administrator with the New Jersey State League and later became president of that organization. He was secretary for the New Jersey State Soccer Association for 18 years and also served as treasurer, registrar and scheduler and referee assignor of all games for the state. Foster played soccer as both a youth player and a senior until a knee injury turned him into a coach and manager of both youth and senior teams. Foster was the treasurer of the Florida State Soccer Association and was a director of the FSSA for 15 years. In 1993 he was inducted into the Florida State Soccer Association Hall of Fame, where he remains an active member today. Foster was the longest-serving treasurer of
USASA and is a life member of USSF.
Jackson Polley, Jr. (1942, United States)
Deputy Director of the
Midwest region from 1988-1991,
Everett was elected Director in 1991, a position he held until 1996. He began his soccer career in 1974 by enrolling children in a local soccer program. In 1975 he became the coach of a U-14 team and by 1976 was coaching in SAY and in a new YMCA program. He founded the Okolona S.C. U-14 team in 1977, serving as president while coaching teams for many years. He helped found the Jefferson County Youth Soccer League in 1978 and led the founding of the Kentucky Youth Soccer Association in 1979, serving as the vice president for three years. He was a player, coach, manager and administrator. He became a USSF referee, high school referee and college referee. He assisted in starting the Kentucky Derby Festival Soccer Tournament in 1980 and later ran the tournament. Founder of the Kentucky Soccer Association in 1982, he served as president for 10 years, and also served as president of the Greater Louisville Soccer League for three years. In 1985-88 he was a select team committee member for Region II and has served on the USSF Pro Committee and the
USASA Insurance Committee. From 1991-1994 he was the vice-president of Greater Louisville Soccer League. He is the recipient of one of only ten Founders of Kentucky Youth Soccer Association awards.
Peggy Polley (1944, United States)
Introduced to soccer in 1975 as a team mom for the Firestone Park S.C. in
Akron, Ohio, Peggy Polley became the founding member of the Greater Akron Amateur Soccer Association (GAASA), serving as secretary from 1978-1991. She served as Ohio North secretary (1984-1991) and state president from 1991-1992. In 1982 she served as chairman on the
USASA Women’s Committee and was the Region II select team women’s administrator from 1985-1990. She has served as the
USASA Membership chairman, from 1988-1994, and from 1995-present. She worked for the USSF as an assistant to the director of referees in 1992, and then moved to
Louisville, Kentucky where she has been
State president since 2005. She was inducted into the Ohio North Youth Soccer Association Hall of Fame in the first class of inductees of 1992.
Sal Rapaglia (1941, Italy)
Salvatore Rapaglia was born in
Sicily, Italy. He came to
New York in 1956 when he was 15 years old. He attended
High School in
Brooklyn, NY and was their star soccer player. He has donated much of his free time to the game of soccer. He has crossed our country many times representing
New York as the president of the Eastern New York State Soccer Association for the last twenty-five years. He is a proven leader of local Italian teams and leagues for over 40 years.
Fiorentina, Calabria Regionals, Brooklyn Italians and NESSL are some of the clubs and leagues he has been involved with since the early sixties. Sal has held numerous positions within USSF, serving on the Professional Committee in 1992-1994 and the US Coaching Committee. In 1990 he was elected president of ENYSSA and in 2005 he received the
Werner Fricker “Builders Award” for his tireless energy and dedication to the game. Sal serves on the
USASA Hall of Fame Committee.
Gordon Redshaw (1926, England)
Nottingham, England, Gordon played street and school soccer almost every day. His dream of making it as a player was dashed by years of recovery from osteomyelitis in both legs, but his passion for the game never diminished. Gordon left in 1955 and eventually settled in
Memphis, Tennessee in 1979 where he formed and coached successful adult league teams until 1986. From 1981-1986 he was the President of the Greater Memphis Soccer Association. From 1981-1997, he served as the National Cups State Commissioner, Region III Commissioner and spent two separate terms as Chairman of the
USASA National Cups. During that time, he also was with the USSF Games Committee, one year of which he was Chairman. From 1982-2005 Gordon managed Men’s and Women’s State Select teams, both of which reached the National Finals several times. From 1983 to 2006 he served as the Vice-President of Adults for the Tennessee State Soccer Association and as the Region III Veterans Cup Commissioner from 2000-2005.
J. Eugene Ringsdorf (1912-2003, United States)
Gene played soccer for 20 years in amateur leagues in
Baltimore, including as a player-coach for the Corinthians S.C. when they won the Stewart Cup,
Maryland’s Amateur Championship, in the 1937-38 season. In 1961,
Eugene was elected President of the United States Soccer Federation for a two-year term. His work with the USSF advanced the cause of soccer in high schools, making soccer one of the more popular scholastic sports. Leading up to his presidency, he had served as the president of the Maryland State Soccer Association during four decades, as well as in other board positions. He also served as a member of the U.S. Olympic Committee and served on the National Hall of Fame Committee. He was inducted into the National Soccer Hall of Fame in 1979; the Maryland Soccer Hall of Fame in 1981; and as a lifetime member of the USSF in 1988.
Charles Robinson (1944, United States)
Charles began playing soccer as an adult in 1979 on a new team created from sandlot players who wanted to play organized soccer in an affiliated league. He started serving as team captain in 1979 and has remained in that capacity to this day. He led his team to an undefeated season in 1980 and since then has won League, State and National titles in Over-30, Over-40 and Over-50 competitions. He has been at the forefront of developing older competitions, pushing to add new categories as organized teams have aged. This year he entered an Over-60 team in the Veterans Cups. He began working as an administrator in 1981 when elected league Vice-President for two years. In 1983 he was elected the League President for which he served for five years. In 1987 he was elected the Florida State President, serving for six years until elected in 1994 as Region III Director. In 1996 he became the Vice Chairman of the
USASA for five years. In 1997 he was elected into the Florida State Hall of Fame and has since served as Chairman of the Florida State Hall of Fame Committee (1999), the Region III Hall of Fame Committee Chairman (2004) and on the
USASA Hall of Fame Committee in 2004.
Joseph L. Rodrigues (1930-2001, Portugal)
Joe played soccer in between 1936 and 1953 where he was a member of the youth teams of Benfica (1944-1946). In 1954 he immigrated to the . He never played soccer here, but in 1963 he became President of the Chicago Brazilian Club, sponsors for the Flyers Soccer Club. In 1996 he became the treasurer of the National Soccer League and in 1979 was appointed by USSF to a committee to reorganize the State Association in
Illinois . He became Illinois President for eight years. From 1979 through 1982, Joe was the USSF Region II Chairman and as such, served on the Board of Directors of the Federation. He served on the Olympic Committee, was the Amateur Division representative on the USSF Marketing Corporation, served on the USSF Financial Committee and the USSF Operations committee. Joe created the Region II Tournament of Champions in 1980, still held every year in his name. He also created the Illinois Soccer Hall of Fame. Prior to his death in 2001, Joe was chairman of three committees in the state association (Cups, Select Teams Program and the Hall of Fame). He was inducted into the Illinois Soccer Hall of Fame in 1994.
Julius Roth (1933, Czechoslovakia)
Born in Forberg, Julius came to the in 1951 and began playing for Hansa Junior, one of eight German-American clubs in
Chicago . The team was the US Junior Champions from 1953-54 and he continued playing on the first and reserve teams of the club until 1965 when he became their coach. In 1972, Julius was one of many organizers who established an independent United States Youth Soccer Association. In 1974, the first AGM was held for the USYSA with 80,000 registered youth players. They now have over four million players. He served as a regional commissioner and on many other committees until 1985. Julius was active in the founding of the Illinois Women’s Soccer League in the 1980’s. IWSL is now 780 teams strong. He has continued to serve as an advisor and on many committees of the IWSL. In 1972, Julius was elected to the Illinois Soccer Association Board and has become a beloved figure. He has served as the President of the Sepp Herberger Committee since 1975. The committee has hosted hundreds of teams from , including the Women’s and Men’s national teams. This committee has raised $260,000 in funds to help youth teams of affiliated clubs.
Howard Rubenstein (1937, United States)
Howard retired from teaching high school chemistry after 33 years. During that time he served as a member of the rules committee for USSF, Director of Coaching for Eastern New York Youth (2001-2006), Chairman of the Intra-Regional Soccer Conference of HASL and NESSL (1997-1996) and Director of Field Operations for the New York Centaurs. He is currently the State Youth Referee Administrator for the Eastern New York Youth, and has been a member and officer of the Eastern New York Adults. He has served as Chairman of the
USASA Under-23 Program, member of its Select Team Committee and USSF Acting Coordinator for four Olympic Festivals. Howard was also a member of the CONCACAF special projects commission, Veterans Commission and Youth Commission. He served one year as Director of Operations for the CONCACAF II women’s tournament. He is a member of the Long Island Junior Soccer Hall of Fame, Eastern New York Soccer Hall of Fame and is a Life Member of the Eastern New York Adult Soccer Association, Eastern New York Youth and the USSF. He continues to volunteer 40 hours a week doing paperwork for both youth and adults.
Roger Schott (1928, France)
Roger played semi and professional football in for Etoile Reichshoffen from 1935 -1938, Racing Club (1945-46) and AS Ingwiller (1947-1949). He became a referee in 1951 before coming to the in 1954. He refereed in the ASL and NASL and was appointed to the FIFA Panel in 1972. He worked 22 full international matches, including World Cup and Olympic eliminations. After an active refereeing career he became more actively involved with Referee Program Administration and Instruction. He developed the Assessment Program in 1978 and since then has assisted the USSF in numerous different capacities. He has willingly donated his time and wisdom to the USSF, CONCACAF and FIFA. He is still actively involved with the administration of soccer in
Eastern Pennsylvania as well as assessing in the NISL, local leagues, and the Amateur and Open Cups.
Joseph Triner (1894-1969, United States)
In 25 years of close association with the sport, Joseph was president of Sparta FC of Chicago, the Midwest League and President of the USSFA from 1936-1938. He served as vice-president of the USSFA from 1932 and was chairman of the Illinois Soccer Commission in the 1950’s. He managed the tour of Sparta Prague of Czechoslovakia in 1926. He was the chairman of the Illinois State Athletic Board which controlled the activities of all athletics in
Illinois in the 1950’s. He also presented the Triner Cup for annual competition between the national teams of and the in the late 40’s and early 50’s.
Richard G. Williams (1935, United States)
Richard participated in most high schools sports: football, baseball, track and basketball. He served in the US Army from 1953-56 with service in for 18 months. Richard worked for the
Milwaukee school system as a social studies teacher for 30 years. In 1989, he was asked by a group of young men to start a soccer club and be their advisor. This encounter led to a journey that has lasted close to 40 years. He has been a coach, player, referee and administrator at the local, state, regional and national levels. He has now retired into a full time volunteer position with the Wisconsin Adult Soccer Association. In 1984 he was named the Wisconsin Soccer Coach of the Year by the coaches association and was again honored as such in 1991. He received the meritorious Service Award from the Wisconsin Soccer Association in 1987, and was inducted into the 1992 Wisconsin Hall of Fame. In 2000 he received the State of Wisconsin Certificate of Commendation for helping establish the first public high school soccer league in the state. In 2001, Milwaukee Public Schools instituted the Schissler/Williams Invitational Soccer Tournament to honor John Schissler and Richard Williams for contributions to the
Public School soccer programs where the goal is to provide needed exposure to inner-city soccer programs and to inspire the student player to aspire to higher educational levels. Richard serves on the
USASA Hall of Fame Committee.
Michael Wuërtz (1934, Austria)
Mike played soccer as a youth and senior player in his native for 13 years. He was both a player and a coach with the Milwaukee Sport Club in
Wisconsin and served as a referee instructor for 15 years. He was a USSF referee with the North American Soccer League for 12 years and officiated for FIFA for 13 years, during which time he whistled in the Pan American games, World Cup and Olympic elimination games and the 1972 finals in . He served on the CONCACAF Referees Committee for four years and on the USSF National Referee Committee for two years. He was inducted into the Wisconsin Soccer Association Hall of Fame in 1998. He served as the
USASA Referee Chairman from 1988 to 1995 and received the Eddie Pearson Award in 1998. In 2004, Mike received the Pat Smith Award and now chairs the Pat Smith Award committee.
Joseph J. Zyzda (1930, Poland)
Joe began soccer activities after World War II in 1945 in Germany. As a member of the Polish Army All-Star team, he scored over 100 goals between 1947-1949. In 1950-51 he competed in a German Class “A” League, winning the championship. He served as Captain of the Polish All stars. After immigrating to the , Joe joined the Chicago Falcons, winning the
State championship. Voted the “Most Valuable Player” he is noted in the Chicago Historical Society. Later that year, the Falcons advanced to the US Open Cup finals and won the championship in 1953. After serving in the US Army, he joined the Chicago Eagles in 1954 and was part of the Eagles winning the runner up spot in the US Amateur Cup in 1955. He was a member of the Chicago All star team from 1955-61, touring to foreign countries. In 1960 he was a member of the Eagles Soccer team that traveled to to compete against four First Division teams, scoring three goals. He was honored by the Mayor of Chicago as a Most Valuable Player against the Universidad of Mexico in 1961. After retiring as a player in 1967, he became vice president of the Eagles and served as president from 1969-1990, building the team to be a top contender by winning Metropolitan Soccer League Championships (8 years),
USASA Region II championships (7 times), the Amateur Cup in 1989, and the US Open Cup championship in 1990. He was inducted into the Illinois Soccer Hall of Fame in 1984 and was honored by the Polish Soccer Federation in 1988 as the first foreign individual to be awarded their highest honor, bestowed on only 31 individuals. Joe has been, and continues to be, President of the Metropolitan Soccer League (35 years) and has been President of the AAC Eagles for 27 years.