Board of Directors Meeting Recap - November 2016

Following is a recap of key reports and decisions from the Nov. 21, 2016 meeting of the U.S. Ski and Snowboard Association (USSA) Board of Directors. Formal meeting minutes will be published in December.

New Board Members
The USSA Board welcomed two new directors. U.S. Freestyle Ski Team alumna Heather McPhie Wantanabe (Bozeman, MT) joins the board as the freestyle athlete representative, replacing Emily Cook. U.S. Cross Country Ski Team alumna Holly Brooks (Anchorage, AK) will join the board in January 2017 as the new United States Olympic Committee (USOC) Athletes’ Advisory Council representative, replacing Grete Eliassen. A complete list of current board members can be found here.

Marolt Athlete Endowment
The U.S. Ski and Snowboard Foundation will be relaunching the Marolt Athlete Endowment at its annual Board of Trustees meeting Dec. 1-3, 2016 in Beaver Creek, CO. The Marolt Athlete Endowment is a $50 million campaign in support of the USSA athletes’ most pressing needs in the areas of athletics and education including athlete travel and elite coaching. It also focuses on developing the whole athlete through support of athlete education and career skill development.       

Athletics Update
The Board approved Olympic selection criteria for ski jumping and nordic combined pending final approval from the USOC. The criteria and schedule of qualification events will be posted on in Spring 2017. The USSA, in partnership with the Utah Olympic Legacy Foundation (UOLF), will host Olympic Trials for ski jumping and nordic combined in Park City, Utah during the 2018 season.

Volunteer Social Media Policy
The Board approved a social media policy for key USSA volunteers, including USSA directors, sport committee members, division and regional leadership, and USSA’s FIS delegation. The purpose of this social media policy is to encourage volunteers to share their voices online in a positive, effective and constructive manner. The policy can be found online at

SafeSport Update
The USOC will be launching its new U.S. Center for SafeSport (the Center) in January 2017. As a national governing body, the USSA must designate those individuals within the organization who are subject to the jurisdiction of the Center. The Board designated USSA staff, licensed coaches, licensed officials, club leaders and governance board members as those within the Center’s jurisdiction. Going forward, should any of these individuals be accused of a safesport violation involving sexual misconduct, the matter will be investigated and adjudicated by the Center. Additional information on the U.S. Center for SafeSport will be available in the coming weeks.

USSA Club Membership

The Board determined that for the first time, both for-profit and non-profit entities may join the USSA as member clubs and also be eligible (with some limited exceptions) to join USSA’s Club Insurance Program (CLIP).

Additionally, the Board determined that, beginning in the 2018-19 season, the USSA will require that clubs seeking USSA membership:

  • Agree to support and align with the USSA’s mission, values and code of conduct.
  • Agree to adhere to SafeSport guidelines, USSA’s concussion policy and background screening protocol for all those in a position of authority over athletes.
  • Demonstrate that club leadership and those whom the club appoints to positions of authority over athletes are USSA members.
  • Provide evidence of legal existence in their state of primary business operations. For example, clubs must show that they are a licensed business entity in good standing.
  • Demonstrate that they possess general liability insurance. This requirement may be satisfied either by joining USSA’s CLIP program or providing USSA with evidence of coverage similar to that provided by CLIP.

BRASS Update
The USSA and the Bryce and Ronnie Athlete Snow Safety (BRASS) Foundation have collaborated since the Foundation’s creation last spring. This November, BRASS hosted two “Know Before You Go” presentations with USSA elite athletes and junior racers at Copper Mountain. BRASS is preparing an educational video targeted for a USSA audience which is slated for release next season.

FIS Update
USSA Chairman Dexter Paine reported that the new committee encompassing snowboarding, freestyle (moguls, aerials) and freeskiing (halfpipe, slopestyle, big air) has made significant progress. USSA representation on the committee includes U.S. Snowboarding/U.S. Freeskiing Program Director Jeremy Forster and USSA Vice President, Events Calum Clark. Both Forster and USSA’s Vice President, Athletics Luke Bodensteiner have been instrumental in making recommendations on the development of the committee structure.

In addition, FIS revised its ethics policy and USSA Chair and FIS Vice President Paine has been tasked with leading an effort to create a new strategic business plan for FIS.


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