I love officiating! I love being associated with officials! It is a noble, humble and critical pursuit. Games have more legitimacy when an official is present. It takes a special individual to choose this path and make this commitment. I like being associated with individuals that have this type of character.
A key word here is associated. When like-minded people decide to associate they combine the inherent wisdom, power and authority of individual members. This choice allows the individual to become part of something recognizable, to become respected, to elevate the profile of the group as a whole and to further deepen that connection with, and among, like-minded individuals.
I have a vision that KSOA will allow for this opportunity. The pooling of individual officials in KSOA will allow us to create educational, training, evaluation and socializing opportunities throughout the sports represented. I believe this enhances and works, in conjunction, with the excellent basic resources KSHSAA provides. KSOA will elevate our members. I have a vision that it will mean that members of KSOA are known for doing just a little bit more as an official. I believe that KSOA will be a resource for young or new people choosing this pursuit; it will be more than just throwing a rookie out on a field, court, or mat. KSOA will be a place to provide support and opportunity. We will become an association that can gather, have fun and recognize our members for their commitment. We will celebrate our history.
I also look at this through the lens of the outside work experience. Most jobs are supported by an association of some kind. Lawyers, doctors, accountants, engineers, sales professionals, teachers, fireman, farmers, police officers, nurses, etc. All these have professional associations that provide the same things being proposed by KSOA. Why is that? It is because these associations provide an opportunity to better the individual and the profession.
I know that the Board shares this vision. John Dehan shares this vision. And, I know that many of you share this vision. It is what we have been working to prepare over the past many months. It gives me great hope about the future of this endeavor.
I realize some of this vision may be lofty. I also realize KSOA hasn’t fulfilled these things, YET!!! Every new idea has to have a start. This is ours, and I hope that “my reason why” might inspire you to join and help us build a shared vision together.
All the best,
Jack Messer, President