Dear Addison United Members,
Earlier this month, the AU Board of Directors announced to our active registered members that we were not renewing our Director of Coaching’s contract and were canceling the fall 2021 program. Since then, we have fielded some questions from concerned club members seeking to understand the rationale behind these decisions.
Before too much time passed, we felt it was important to share further information on those decisions with Addison United’s entire community, who we are contacting here.
In addition, we had a couple of other updates we wanted to share while we were contacting you.
1) Our decision not to renew our Director of Coaching’s contract
We know our former Director of Coaching, Chris George, had positive relationships with many of our players and parents. Chris worked extremely hard for Addison United over the past two years, including through a tumultuous and uncertain year in lockdown. Earlier this month, the AU Board of Directors met to review our Director of Coaching’s job performance over the 2020/2021 season. That review included our expectations for his role as director, as well as interactions with players, officials, AU coaches and external coaches, and the local community.
After a very difficult but thoughtful deliberation, the board voted not to renew Chris’ contract for the 2021/2022 season. We did not take this decision lightly but felt it was in the club’s best interest moving forward.
Moving forward, we will work to build a united soccer community in Addison County and continue developing a talented and respected group of players and coaches that represent our organization well both on and off the field.
2) Canceling our 2021 fall program
Last year Addison United organized a hugely successful free summer program. On the back of that success, we opted to continue with a fall program when it was still unclear whether schools and community recreational programs would be able to open their programs fully. The 2020 fall AU season was quite successful. Still, we received feedback from athletic directors and recreation coordinators who wanted to ensure that club, school, and rec programs could work together to serve all youth players better.
Because of recent feedback along those lines, in combination with our sudden change in staffing, we made the difficult decision to cancel our fall program for U8 through U12 players. However, we plan to develop a fall program in the future in collaboration with local school and recreational program leaders so that what Addison United offers will work for the entire Addison County soccer community.
One additional note on fall programming:
We know Chris George has independently contacted many AU players about a fall program he is running. We’ve received questions about it, so to clarify, that program is not affiliated with Addison United. We hope every player has a fantastic fall soccer experience.
3) Our 2021/2022 AU Plans
We are currently preparing for what we hope will be another fun and rewarding season for our players and families. Currently, the AU Board is working on:
- Revising the Director of Coaching job description and interviewing quality candidates for that role.
- Meeting with community stakeholders to expand access for Addison County soccer players.
- Collaborating with soccer coaching experts both in and outside our community to provide premiere development opportunities for our coaching staff.
- Working with those experts and stakeholders to build a player development program that emphasizes individual and team skills development, inclusion, sportsmanship, having fun, and progressive levels of competition as players mature.
- Designing our upcoming winter and spring programs.
- Launching a major website upgrade (Phase 1 already complete).
- Planning for the club’s Annual Meeting next month.
4) Upcoming Annual Meeting, Sat, Sep 25th, 7:00 pm—a chance to get involved
Next month, the AU Board of Directors will hold officer elections and seek to identify volunteers for several new and returning roles in club leadership. Addison United is a volunteer-run nonprofit soccer club. It has always depended on dedicated board members and volunteers to provide an excellent experience for all soccer players in Addison County. This Annual Meeting is the first of many upcoming opportunities for you to get involved in Addison United.
This meeting will be held by MS Teams videoconference. Here is the link for the meeting: Annual Meeting, Sat, Sep 25th, 7:00 pm
Thank you to all of our members who played, cheered, coached, and in any other way supported your club this past year. We want Addison United to continue providing a fun, inclusive, and top-notch soccer experience for every child and family in Addison County.
Please reach out to us with any questions, comments, or other thoughts.
- Matt Neffinger — President: firstname.lastname@example.org
- Chris Coffey — Vice President: email@example.com
- Tim Hunt — Treasurer: firstname.lastname@example.org
- Josh Romond — Acting Secretary, Regional Member (Vergennes Area): email@example.com
- David Turner — Regional Member (Middlebury Area): firstname.lastname@example.org