Where are you from? West Des Moines, IA
Did you play soccer growing up? Only played soccer in gym class in elementary school.
How did you get started in soccer? Neighbor asked our son if he wanted to play, then I began coaching.
Through the years, what has your involvement in soccer included? Coaching, then club board member, club president, finally Iowa Soccer Board member.
When it comes to soccer, what "if I only knew then what I know now" advice do you have? As long as reasonably good coaching is available for the 10-14-year olds, being on a "select" team is not that important to the child's soccer development. As long as they are still interested and have a passion, they will learn it 100 times faster than at the younger age.
What were our best- and least-liked soccer experiences? The best is the social experience with the other parents. That part we still miss. The worst was the politics over the most minuscule repeated topics year after year after year after year.
Craziest/worst weather you ever sat through watching your kid(s) play, or that you coached/refereed in? A group of parents wanted their kids to play a game so badly that we shoveled snow from the field rather than waiting a day (or even hours) for it to melt.
College/university you attended? Iowa State
Cyclone or Hawkeye...or??? Cyclone
Your kids are done with soccer now, so why are you still involved? I feel soccer is an excellent team sport for youth of varying athletic abilities and physical characteristics. Using their minds and imagination during the game, they can invent the play.
Dorothy Pisarski, Treasurer
Where are you from?
I was born and raised in Brooklyn, NY.
Did you play soccer growing up? No, but I watched soccer. I grew up in a by-gone era in a European traditional household where girls weren't allowed to play sports.
How did you get started in soccer? My dad was a semi-pro goalkeeper and our whole family's life revolved around the "family of the team". My earliest memories go back to his team's games and events. I'm still good friends with the other kids whose dads played on that team and with whom we grew up together.
Through the years, what has your involvement in soccer included? I'm a soccer brat and a soccer mom (my son plays in college). I've been a referee more than 10 years. I've had occasional stints as a team parent/coordinator.
When it comes to soccer, what "if I only knew then what I know now" advice do you have? Since I grew up in an enclave of soccer afficionados I didn't realize how many people don't know the rules of the game. If I could do it over again I'd probably explain more and enlighten parents whose children are just starting out.
What were our best- and least-liked soccer experiences? Least: I watched a cleats-up slide that resulted in 17 stitches on the goalkeeper's face. Best: All soccer is "best experience" in the moment. Whenever two or more people are kicking a ball, having some fun and exercise, I get inspired. I love especially to see a great creative move - it can be durng a rec. game or a pro game or any game inbetween.
Craziest/worst weather you ever sat through watching your kid play, or that you coached/refereed in? When I began refereeing back east we weren't allowed to wear long pants during a game and I shivered through many frigid halves with snow falling.
College/university you attended? I earned my bachelor's degree at Siena College near Albany and my master's at New York University.
Cyclone or Hawkeye...or??? I teach at Drake, so "go Bulldogs!"
Star Trek or Star Wars? Star Trek. I was a Leonard Nimoy geek.
Your son is done with youth soccer now, so why are you still involved? I was born into a soccer family. I am not involved in the game just because my son played, rather he might have become interested in the game because of me! I apreciate the opportunity to help the growth of the game with future generations of players and fans. It is my pleasure to do so.
Brad Waggoner, Governance Chair
Where are you from? Des Moines, IA
Did you play soccer growing up? No, soccer was not prevalent when I graduated high school in '77. We played football.
How did you get started in soccer? My oldest son needed a coach for his team. I started as an assistant my first year with no soccer experience.
Through the years, what has your involvement with soccer included? Coached recreational soccer for 12 years. Served on the WDM board as treasurer and president. Currently serving on the Iowa Soccer Board.
When it comes to soccer, what "if I only knew then what I know now" advice do you have? When you start coaching your first child, you worry about wins and losses. When I was coaching my third child, we made sure all of the players were developing and that we all had fun. Our goal was to make sure every player we coached came back out for soccer the following year.
What were your best- and least-liked soccer experiences? I enjoyed everyone I met with the soccer club when I was serving on the board. There are many people involved with the club who are very passionate about soccer.
Craziest/worst weather you ever sat through watching your kid(s) play, or that you coached/refereed in? Our worst weather game was playing a State Cup play-in game in Ankeny that sleeted the entire game with 20mph winds. The ground was frozen white by the end of the game.
College/university you attended? Iowa State University
Cyclone or Hawkeye...or? Cyclone
Star Trek or Star Wars? Star Wars - I can still remember watching the first movie. It was ahead of its time.
Your kids are done with youth soccer now, so why are you still involved? My youngest daughter is playing college soccer now. I wanted to give back to soccer by serving on the Iowa Soccer Board. Soccer has been such a positive experience for my children I wanted to make sure the great programs we experienced continue on for another generation.