Aug 02, 2017

2017-2018 Women’s National Residential Goalball Program Announcement

TO:      ALL U.S. Goalball Women’s National Team, Talent Pool, Emerging and Military Athletes
From:  Mark Lucas, Executive Director
Date:   August 2, 2017            
Re:      2017-2018 Women’s National Residential Goalball Program Announcement

The United States Association of Blind Athletes (USABA) operates a long-term women’s residential goalball program in partnership with Turnstone in Fort Wayne, Indiana. This comprehensive program provides the opportunity to enhance playing skills through participation in a training program geared to individual athlete needs, with the objective of developing athletes for future world championship or Paralympic teams.  Training will generally include 5 days of court time per week and a rigorous in-and-out of season individual strength and conditioning training plan.

Accepted athletes who desire to apply to enter the Resident Program must commit to the full Resident Program period. Natural break periods will be built into the Resident Program training cycles, but athletes should be prepared to commit to living and training in the program as indicated in the below listing of important tentative dates.

• October 1, 2017:  Start of 10 week cycle #1
• November 19 - January 6: Holiday Break and Pan Am Games
• January 7, 2018: Start of 10 week cycle #2
• March 18 – March 31 Spring Break
• April 1, 2018: Start of 8 week cycle #3 (Pre-Worlds Prep)

Athletes accepted to the Resident Program will be eligible to receive the following benefits:
• Residence in a housing facility which includes furnishings, appliances, internet and utilities
• Weekday lunch meal support
• Goalball facility use
• Access to strength and conditioning resources
• Day-to-day training led by the coaching staff
• Athletic trainer support

• Be a current U.S. Citizen who is eligible to obtain a US passport
• Have completed High School or earned an equivalent degree
• Be at least 18 years of age
• Must be able to classify as a B1, B2 or B3 athlete
• Be willing to submit to a complete health profile coordinated by USOC Sports Medicine including thorough medical history and comprehensive physical examination
• Athletes will be expected to work in a paid or volunteer status a minimum of 8 hours a week or be actively taking a college, university or vocational training course while in the resident program

• Space availability
• Athlete’s current “home” training environment and competition activity
• Potential for the athlete to make the 2018 World Goalball Championships and 2020 Paralympic Games
• Impact of the goalball Resident Program on the athlete’s goalball potential
• Athlete’s desire and willingness to commit fully to training in the Resident Program

All interested candidates must submit a sports resume and one page cover letter and send to USABA High Performance Director John Potts to .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) by August 21, 2017.  Acceptance to the Resident Program will be at the sole discretion of USABA staff and men’s national coaches. Prior to entry into the program, selected athletes will be expected to sign a contract that covers their enrollment period in the residency program and they will be expected to make a $100 refundable damage deposit.  All positions in the Resident Program may not necessarily be filled. 

Jul 27, 2017

U.S. Army Veterans to Compete in Powerlifting at 2017 Rocky Mountain State Games

The United States Association of Blind Athletes (USABA) is sending three powerlifters to compete in the 16th Annual Rocky Mountain State Games; Charles King (Philadelphia, Penn.), local athlete, Thomas Monroe (Pueblo, Colo.) and Tony Taliani (Columbus, Ohio).

King, a post-Vietnam war veteran who was honorably discharged from the Army for health reasons has overcome depression, homelessness and cancer since losing his sight to hereditary acute glaucoma. King competed in his first powerlifting competition at 60 years old in 2010 and has competed in multiple international competitions since, including the 2015 International Blind Sports Association (IBSA) World Games in Seoul where he finished 4th overall in the Mall 100 kg division.

Monroe served in the Medical Service Corps with the U.S. Army, active duty, from 1972 to 1975 and on reserve from 1975 to 1981. He experienced vision loss as a result of detached retinas and cataracts, and has competed for USABA since 2009. This weekend, Monroe returns to Colorado Springs where he set several age-group records at last year’s State Games.

Newcomer, Taliani holds personal record lifts of 413 pounds in squat, 264 pounds in bench press and 507 pounds in deadlift.

“We’re very proud to partner with Colorado Springs Sports Corp on the Rocky Mountain State Games each year,” said USABA Executive Director, Mark Lucas. “The event gives our athletes an opportunity to compete against peers and challenge their level of skill.”

Powerlifting events will take place at the National Strength & Conditioning Association (1885 Bob Johnson Dr.) on Sunday, July 23, beginning at 9:00am.

Jul 18, 2017

USABA Searches for New Member of the Board of Directors

The United States Association of Blind Athletes is seeking qualified candidates to serve on its Board of Directors. USABA is seeking proactive, energetic, success-oriented individuals to assist in achieving our goal of 2020 2X; doubling the effectiveness of the organization by the 2020 Paralympics.

Successful candidates will have a proven track record of high achievement in fund-raising, the field of athletics, non-profit governance or service delivery to constituencies. Our mission statement is: “The United States Association of Blind Athletes empowers Americans who are blind and visually impaired to experience life-changing opportunities in sports, recreation and physical activities, thereby educating and inspiring the nation.” We are seeking candidates who can assist our organization succeed with this mission. Term of office for the Board of Directors is 4 years. Please refer to job description below for a complete picture of expectations of USABA Board members.

Please submit a resume’ and letter of intent to Peter Paulding, USABA Governance Committee Chair, no later than August 15, 2017. Documents must be submitted via email, in PDF format and sent to .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) by the August 15, 2017 deadline to be considered.

United States Association of Blind Athletes - Member of the Board of Directors
Job Description and Expectations

MissionThe United States Association of Blind Athletes empowers Americans who are blind and visually impaired to experience life-changing opportunities in sports, recreation and physical activities, thereby educating and inspiring the nation.

VisionEvery American who is blind or visually impaired will lead a healthy lifestyle by actively participating in sports, recreation and physical activity.

Respect: We respect and honor the inherent value and the contributions of people who are blind and visually impaired.
Integrity: We conduct our business transparently, honestly, and ethically.
Empowerment: We are deeply dedicated to the potential of each person who is blind or visually impaired involved with USABA to realize his or her aspirations.
Diversity: We are committed to welcoming individuals from various cultural backgrounds and life experiences, regardless of disability, gender, race, ethnicity, sexual orientation, religion and age.
Inclusion: We foster an environment of acceptance through education and seek ways to broaden the integration of athletes who are blind and visually impaired into community-based sports programs and competitions.

• Attend board meetings regularly
• Serve on at least one committee (each year) and participate in its meetings regularly
• Attend board retreat, in-service workshops and other board development activities
• Attend and participate in special events as needed
• Be well informed on issues and agenda items in advance of meetings
• Contribute skills, knowledge and experience when appropriate
• Listen respectfully to other points of view
• Participate in organizational decision-making
• Contribute financially to the organization, according to one’s ability
• Support and participate in fundraising activities
• Perform program and management oversight by being aware of all aspects of the organization
• Be a goodwill ambassador for the organization
• Assume leadership positions willingly
• Be a team player

Length of Term:   Four Years
Responsible to:   Entire Board; “reports to” President
Time Commitment:  5-10 Hours per month

Governing Style:
The Board of Directors of USABA will approach its governance task with a style that emphasizes the following:
• Outward vision
• Encouragement of diversity in viewpoints
• Strategic leadership more than administrative detail
• Clear distinction between board and staff roles
• Focus on the future
• Being proactive rather than reactive in its endeavors

Code of Ethics:

As a member of the board, I will:
• Listen carefully to my board colleagues;
• Respect the opinion of fellow board members;
• Respect and support majority decisions of the board;
• Recognize that all authority is vested in the full board only when it meets in legal sessions;
• Keep well-informed about developments relevant to issues that may come before the board;
• Participate in board meetings and actions;
• Bring to the attention of the board any issues I believe will have an adverse effect on the organization or those we serve;
• Attempt to interpret the needs of those we serve to the nonprofit, and interpret the actions of the nonprofit to those we serve;
• Refer complaint to the proper level on the chain of command;
• Recognize that my job is to ensure that the nonprofit is well-managed, not to management the nonprofit;
• Represent all those whom this nonprofit serves, not just a particular geographic area or interest group;
• Consider myself a “trustee” of the nonprofit and do my best to ensure that it is well-maintained, financially secure, growing and always operating in the best interests of those we serve;
• Always work in learn how to do my job better;
• Declare conflicts of interest between my personal life and my position on the board, and abstain from voting or discussion when appropriate.

As a member of the board, I will not:
• Criticize fellow board members or their opinions, in or out of the board room;
• Use the nonprofit organization for my personal advantage or that of my friends or relatives;
• Discuss the confidential proceedings of the board outside the boardroom;
• Promise before the meeting how I will vote on any issue;
• Interfere with the duties of the administrator or undermine the administrator’s authority with staff members.

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