Making USSF President a Paid Position

One thing I've been asked about a few times is my proposal (which several other candidates have also proposed) to make the President position a paid one. This is not a new idea; it has come up over the years at the AGM but has been brushed aside by the current leadership. The president cannot just choose to be paid. The membership would have to vote to change the bylaws and make the president a paid position.

I believe it's the right thing to do for a few reasons:

Commitment. There are massive challenges we face to continue growing the game in the U.S., and our next leader needs to spend the time making sure that all voices in US soccer are heard and have a seat at the table. Thinking that doing so is a part-time job is naïve. We need a president who can work tirelessly and exclusively to grow this game.

Accountability. Every major Soccer Nation pays its Federation President, but it’s important to understand why. Offering an executive salary for such an important position increases accountability, commitment, and competition. A salary attracts capable people. It also creates accountability because every term you will face stiff competition to keep your role. The result is a true meritocracy. Making the position paid is the opposite of self-interest: It will in fact lessen the job security of the President and keep whomever fills that role in it based on performance and nothing else. 

Equality. Because of the time commitment required to do this job right, having the position unpaid means either 1) the president would have to seek income elsewhere, distracting from his or her focus and potentially presenting conflicts of interest or 2) the president would have to be independently wealthy. It's obvious why #1 is bad for USSF. But #2 is just as bad, because it excludes a diverse group of talented candidates from coming forward. Why would the federation want to limit its pool of potential presidents only to those of significant means? Such an exclusionary approach is totally at odds with the tone USSF needs to set to succeed. 

These are the arguments I'd make when I bring this proposal forward. But the most important point here is that this issue is a non-issue for this Presidential year's election; no decision about paying the president can happen without the membership voting for it at a future date.

Should I win, I'd take the job as an unpaid president.  I would plan to bring a proposed bylaw change to the membership for consideration in the future, but should the membership reject it, I'd simply continue in the role unpaid. 


Progress Plan

Tonight, I'm excited to be sharing my Progress Plan, the result of several months' of conversations with stakeholders at all levels of U.S. Soccer—and especially at the December Soccer Summit in NYC, where a diverse group of nearly 30 representatives from all levels of the game gathered to discuss the path forward for our soccer nation.

The work doesn’t stop here. There is still much to learn once we are allowed behind the curtain—and to earn the right to the office, I must now work tirelessly to communicate this plan to the membership and engage in constructive dialogue to improve it. A positive future for our soccer nation is about much more than a plan. It’s about electing a president capable of inviting everyone to the table in order to collaborate on a common goal: to make soccer the preeminent sport in our country as it is around the world.

You can read the plan by clicking the image below.


Year End Thanks

As the year comes to a close, I wanted to take a minute to thank you for supporting my campaign. It has been an incredibly productive two months—with hundreds of phone calls, trips to meet delegates, and the Soccer Summit in NYC—and I couldn't have done it without your help. 

It is now seven weeks until the election in Orlando. I will be spending most of January traveling around the country, sharing and revising the draft Progress Plan before releasing it publicly around January 15th, ahead of the United Soccer Coaches convention in Philadelphia. I'm also excited to be participating this month in the American Outlaw's candidate forum (January 9th) and the candidates debate on January 20th in Philadelphia, both of which will give the voting delegates a clearer picture of the differences between candidates in this wide field. 

Happy New Year and here's to making this 2018 election the first step toward the future of our soccer nation.