June 10, 2016 Edition

    What happened in the previous two weeks:

    • Darwin Curtis Grant program applications are due by 5 p.m. CT today.
    • The 2016-17 resource allocation offer from the USOC represents an increase of $180,000 from last season, including an additional $90,000 for direct athlete support (funds distributed directly to athletes that they can use as they choose, whether for offsetting lost time at work, or to pay training and competition expenses). The reasoning given by the USOC for this year’s increase was their firm belief in the direction of the High Performance Program, their confidence in the staff and leadership, and the commitment the USCA has shown in moving from an operational to policy driven governance structure.
    • The USOC has not offered support for the Winter World University Games (WWUGs), so we have declined to sign the contract with BTI Events, the event manager in the USA. The USCA’s cost for sending a men’s and women’s teams to the 2017 WWUGs in Almaty, Kazakhstan, would have been at least $50,000. BTI is now connecting with individual curlers and teams that have expressed interest in trying to raise their own funds to compete in these games.
    • The USCA Budget Advisory Group has received the first draft of the proposed FY17 USCA budget, as well as a current FY16 Budget vs. Projections. The group includes USCA Chairman Rich Lepping, Audit/Finance Committee Chairman Sean Silver, AAC representative Craig Brown, Treasurer Vic Huebner, and Directors Catharine Persinger and Scott Stevinson.
    • The ad hoc Membership Committee formed by Chairman Rich Lepping met for the first time on Wednesday (by teleconference). The purpose of this committee is to discuss whether the “one size fits all” membership structure of the USCA still works, and if the conclusion is that it does not, then to come up with ideas for revamping the structure.
    • We received the first round of comments from the USOC on the 2018 U.S. Olympic Team Mixed Doubles Selection Procedures, and are updating the document to send a second draft back to the USOC as quickly as possible.
    • As announcement of the athletes who will be in the 2016-17 USCA High Performance Program was released on May 27. The 27 players in the men’s and women’s program will attend a pre-season camp at the U.S. Olympic Training Center in Colorado Springs June 21-26. The HPP coaching staff is looking at trying to host a similar camp for the 18 players on the junior men’s and women’s teams later this summer.
    • Check out this Sway “Making the Team” site created by Terry Davis highlighting the 2016-17 High Performance Program athlete selections.
    • Meetings in New York last week with NBC and WCF leaders confirmed support for the Curling Night in America series on NBC Sports Network for 2017 and 2018. NBC has also indicated its interest in airing at least one game per day from future women’s and men’s World Curling Championships, and possibly also the Mixed Doubles World Championship.
    • Curling Canada CEO Katherine Henderson and I met in Toronto to continue conversations about ways to work together to continue to advance curling in North America.
    • Curling appears to be gaining momentum in Mexico, based upon a conversation I had this week with a person helping to develop the sport there. If all goes well, the Federacion Mexicana de Curling will be up for membership in the World Curling Federation by this September’s Congress, and development of the first dedicated curling rink in Mexico City will proceed.
    • To date, about 80 USCA members have signed up for the new member benefit program launched last week with promotive.com, which provides discounts on a wide variety of consumer goods.
    • The second annual Business of Curling Symposium was held last weekend at the Milwaukee Curling Club. Twenty-three participants from clubs in Wisconsin, Illinois, Iowa, Minnesota, Michigan, Alaska, and Arizona attended. Darrell Ell from the World Curling Federation and Kim Nawyn, Director of Growth & Development, led sessions throughout the weekend. Christy Hering, Development Associate, and Mark Swandby, USCA representative to the WCF, were also involved.
    • Deputy Manager Mike Dellemann is completing a Donor Thank You letter and Season in Review to mail to all individuals who donated to the USCA in 2015-16.
    • Two USCA ice technician courses are scheduled in July. A Level II course will take place July 9-10 in Wisconsin Rapids, Wis., and a Level 1 course is set for July 30 in Grand Rapids, Minn.,
    • Summer meetings have started with the Officiating Advisory Group. This group focuses on changes and improvements to be made to officiating education, event management documents, and other related topics. The June 8th meeting focused on review of event surveys and identifying course conductors in the GNCC for the upcoming year.
    • Amazon shoppers can help support USA Curling by starting their shopping at Amazon Smile and choosing USA Curling as their charitable cause. Amazon donates 0.5% of the price of all eligible purchases made through this site to USA Curling.
    • Even amateur video makers can add cards to videos they post on YouTube that provide an interactive way to point viewers toward a charitable cause, such as supporting a curling team, or program, or organization.

    What’s up next week:

    • USOC Digital Media quarterly meeting, Monday.
    • NGB Council meeting, Tuesday.

    What’s coming two weeks from now (June 19 - 25, 2016):

    • NGB Diversity Champions Quarterly meeting, June 21.
    • USCA Operations Group meeting, June 21.
    • ACES summer conference, Fort Lauderdale, Fla., June 21-23.
    • Olympic Day, June 23.

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