Volunteer of the Year: Andy Olson - WXOW News 19 La Crosse, WI – News, Weather and Sports |

Volunteer of the Year: Andy Olson

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Name:  Andy Olson

Organization(s) you volunteered for in 2013:   

Holmen Park and Recreation Department’s soccer program

Viking Youth Soccer Association

Coulee Region Club

Wisconsin Youth Soccer Association Southwest District Board

Wisconsin Youth Soccer Association State Board

Western Wisconsin Classic Soccer League

Favorite Sports Memory:  

Last fall I was refereeing U12 soccer in Tomah.  It was the morning of the first ever fall jamboree that the Southwest District put together.  I had spent a lot of time the previous winter introducing the concept to the board and talking to a number of different clubs about organizing the three events.  In most of the state, fall is the primary season and our area really didn’t offer much outside of a couple in-house programs.  It is a favorite moment of mine because it was an expansion of soccer for the whole region that didn’t exist before I introduced the idea.      

Years of Volunteering in athletics:  9

Athletic Volunteer Activities:  

I help organize the Holmen Park and Recreation Department spring soccer rosters and registration with the Wisconsin Youth Soccer Organization.  I coached two spring park and recreation teams full time.  I also assisted in coaching practice of three other teams.  In addition I organize the activities and coach in the U6 Viking Youth Soccer Academy and the Pre-K Viking Youth Soccer Junior Academy for 120 kids divided into 20 teams.   I also maintain a FIFA referee certification and donate some time to refereeing soccer.  I coach for the Viking Youth Soccer Association in the summer.  In July I run a trap and shoot camp as a fundraiser to support the Holmen High School Boys Soccer Team, 3 hours a night for four days a week.  In the fall I also run a Sunday U6 soccer program for the Park and Recreation Department.  Starting in late November and going until mid-March I run a winter indoor soccer program six hours on Sundays for the Holmen Park and Recreation Department. 

I set agendas and run meetings 4 to 5 times a year for the Southwest District of the Wisconsin Youth Soccer Association between the months of November and June.  I also represent the Southwest District on the state board for the Wisconsin Youth Soccer Association three to four times a year in that same time period.  I am the District Registrar and spend a lot of time registering kids on line and offering help to other registrars in the district.  In addition I assist in the Southwest District Leagues issues that come about from operating a 14 community league that ranges over 3 states.  As a commissioner of the Western Wisconsin Classic Soccer League I meet with the other commissioners a couple times a year to organize its soccer league that involves teams from as far north as Spooner, WI and as far south as La Crosse, WI.  I serve on the Coulee Region Club’s board that meets 3 to 4 times a year.  I provide advice and support to the six communities it represents (Mauston, Sparta, Melrose-Mindoro, West Salem, Holmen, and Onalaska).  Once every month I attend Viking Youth Soccer Association meetings and assist in setting up tournament seasons for summer and fall, I decide rosters, recruiting coaches, ordering equipment, and I also assist in developing and implementing fundraising activities. 

What do you like most about volunteering? 

I enjoy the connection to community.  I have a lot of good friendships because of the activities I involved myself in both in Holmen and outside of it.  I enjoy mentoring children and watching them grow up while I coach them.  There are kids I coached in 1994 that are coaching colleagues around the area now at both the youth and high school level.  I enjoy coaching soccer and am proud of the expanded soccer opportunities in our area that I help create and operate.    

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