John "Jack" Nolan (Veteran) - Inducted 2021
Reed Saunders (Veteran) - Inducted 2021
Reed Saunders was lifelong educator, committed to providing access to college educations for people of all financial backgrounds. Throughout his professional career, Reed played a key leadership role in designing and implementing the Pell Grants program and other state and federal aid programs to support students in obtaining their college educations through awarding grants, loan guarantees, and scholarships.
A resident of McLean since 1969, Reed was instrumental in helping develop youth soccer in the Virginia-DC metropolitan area. Reed began coaching soccer in the early 70s. He strongly supported girls’ participation in sports and assisted his daughter in becoming one of the first girls to play for the McLean Boys Club. He was one of the leaders in the migration of McLean Boys Club soccer to McLean Youth Soccer. From 1975 to 1977, he served as the first President of the VYSA. During that time, Reed wanted to ensure that no child was left behind in the sport because of financial constraints. In that endeavor, he was committed to keeping costs to a minimum so all children could participate. To address the limited coaching pool, Reed insisted on programs to encourage coaching development. For Reed, sportsmanship was not a word simply uttered, but one truly practiced. He was dedicated to ensuring that it was something “lived” by both coaches and players alike. Reed was quoted in the minutes of an executive committee meeting held in 1977 “Our principal interest…. is the good of soccer. We hope to make this a better game for kids.”
Pam Wilks (Veteran) - Inducted 2020
Pam Wilks started her soccer service with McLean Youth Soccer Association where her son’s and daughter played soccer. She was also a Team Manager and served on the Mclean Youth Soccer Board. Pam was also involved at her children’s HS and established the first snack bar for girls soccer that evolved into snack bars for many sports and is now dedicated in her name. Pam was the Virginia Youth Soccer Association’s First Administrator. She started May 13, 1987 and retired October 1992. Pam ran the VYSA State Office from her home. Pam worked endlessly to start the First VYSA Workshop held on February 4, 1989 at the Holiday Inn Fair Oaks in Fairfax, VA. Her duties as VYSA Administrator included VYSA Library- Librarian for the Northern Virginia Tape and Book Library. She also Assisted the Touchline Editor, Carol Cason, by providing Carol a compilation of ever changing facts. While VYSA Administrator she was also the VYSA Joint Coaching Program Administrator. Pam Wilks was short in stature, but she was a giant and a leader when it came to running the State Office and was a great asset to VYSA with her ability to network with other Region I State Association offices and the National Office.
Tom Frank (Veteran) - Inducted 2019
Tom Frank became involved in soccer in 1974 when he coached his son’s team in Chantilly Youth Association. Besides coaching for CYA, he also was the first director of their travel program and director of their referee program.
Tom played in the Northern Virginia Coaches League from 1975 until 1985. Tom first certified with USSF as a referee in the fall of 1975 and has remained certified since then. His officiating career was mostly focused on adult games; however, he made sure that he more than exceeded the required number of youth games required as a senior referee each year. His highest referee grade level was State Level Grade 5 and he was a national candidate. He started refereeing high school games in 1980 and continued until 2005 refereeing in many District, Regional, and State Title games. Tom became a USSF Referee Instructor in 1982. Tom started refereeing college games in 1984 and continued until 1994. During his referee career Tom officiated an estimated 5,000 games, has been teaching referee classes for 36 years, and assessed referees for 12 years. He received assignments for many final games in tournaments, state cup, and college games. Went to the Senior Regionals eight times, Youth Regionals four times (once as referee and three times as an assessor), refereed professional games for about 10 years, and refereed numerous International Friendlies involving teams from Europe, Central and South America. He was the President of DC/NOVA Soccer Referee Association, and Area Director of Instruction. Tom currently holds US Soccer certifications as a Grade 5 referee, Grade 5 Instructor, Grade 5 Assessor, and Grade 8 Assignor. For the past 10 years he has been the State Referee Registrar for Metro DC-Virginia State Referee Program, registering approximately 6,000 referees per year with US Soccer. He also manages their Risk Management Program.
Anita J. Hood (Veteran) - Inducted 2019
Anita J. Hood’s served a 41 year uninterrupted soccer related career as Referee Assignor, League Secretary (30 years) and ‘At-Large’ delegate (25 years) to the Adult State Soccer Association.
As Referee Assignor, she worked with most of the Virginia, DC, West Virginia and some Maryland leagues as they developed over those years. During her tenure she made 134,000 – 150,000 individual assignments to the Youth, Adult, Co-Ed, High School, and International matches.
She assisted in the development of Referee training programs before there was a formal USSF program that increased the number of DC/No VA registered referees from 49 to well over 1200.
As the State Youth and Adult programs developed, she lent her expertise assisting and training new assignors and worked with administrators, coaches, and league officials as referee advocate in dispute resolution as a friend, teacher, defender and sometimes irate supervisor.
Dick Whalen (Veteran) - Inducted 2018
Captain Dick Whalen, U.S. Navy (Retired), graduated from the Naval Academy in 1963. He served thirty years at sea and ashore, including as Commanding Officer of two warships. Both vessels were recognized best-in-class recipient of Atlantic Fleet Awards for athletics, leadership, and personnel retention.
Dick began parent-coaching soccer of his eldest son’s recreation team in 1977 while on duty in the Washington area, followed by first coach of the highly successful ‘72 boys Springfield Youth Club “Express” travel team. As “Officer Representative” while Director of Professional Development at the U.S. Naval Academy, he mentored varsity soccer athletes, coached a Bowie, Maryland travel club and, subsequently, Pascagoula, Mississippi recreational and State ODP teams. After reassignment to Hampton Roads, Dick formed the “Parent’s Soccer Association of Virginia Beach:, successfully lobbying the School System to change high school soccer from afternoon to an evening format, increasing player recruiting visibility and families ability to see offspring in action. While President of Beach FC for several years, he focused on improving player college recruiting and was instrumental in the creation of the Hampton Roads Soccer Council (HRSC) and its premier 75 acre Soccer Complex. To generate Complex revenues, Dick led creation of the “North American Sand Soccer Championships (NASSC) in 1994, now the largest amateur and pro/am sand/beach soccer festival worldwide. In its 25th year, NASSC has hosted 200,000 youth and adult players, raising millions of dollars for the Complex. He was selected as a Tourism Ambassador” by Virginia Beach.
Garland Carter (Veteran) - Inducted 2017
Garland Carter served as Treasurer of VYSA for three years from 1982 through 1985. He brought professionalism into the position through his accounting based background. During his tenure as the VYSA Treasurer he secured tax exempt status as a section 501(c)3 organization. Also during his tenure, he took on the responsibility of reorganizing the DC/VA State Referee program. The State Youth and Amateur Associations were having growing and organizational difficulties with the Referee organization. Garland was appointed by both State Associations to be the State Referee Administrator. With his experience as a USSF referee, and a Youth Association officer, he was able to reorganize the program and returned the confidence to all three organizations. Garland also was a coach in WAGS for many years; he coached the 1969 FPYC Flyers. His daughter Kathy Carter the goalkeeper for the team, is now the President of Soccer United Marketing, a position which, oversees the commercial and marketing aspects of Major League Soccer. Kathy also served as the United States representative on FIFA’s Committee for Women’s Football and the FIFA Women’s World Cup.
Richard Broad (Veteran) - Inducted 2016
Richard is a television analyst for Fox Sports and The American Sports Network, and is president of American Soccer Programs and Director of Middle States Soccer Camp. He was the head men’s coach at George Mason University, where he raised the program from Division III status to the Division I level, and was twice selected South Atlantic Region Coach of the Year. Prior to that, Richard was head men’s coach at W. T Woodson High School, where he took his teams to the State Tournament four times. He also coached several successful club teams.
Susan Frank (Veteran) - Inducted 2016
When Susan started refereeing in 1975, there were no women referees in DC or VA. Susan became a USSF referee in 1975 and over a career of 37 years, she refereed youth, senior amateur, high school, college, and professional games – over 6,000 in all. She was the first woman in Virginia to become both a State Grade referee and a State Referee instructor. Some of her other accomplishments include: first woman to referee a men’s league final; first woman from Virginia to be invited to referee at the NCAA final four; and first woman to referee in both a professional league and an international friendly. Susan was also a referee assessor and secretary for the National Soccer League of Washington, DC.
Everett Merritt (Veteran) - Inducted 2015
Everett started his amateur career in the German American league in New York as a teenager. He then played his collegiate soccer at the University of Bridgeport and led his team to the finals of the first NCAA Division I tournament in 1959. He was selected to the All-New England squad 3 years running. After graduation, he played with three National Soccer League teams in Washington, DC: Maggies, which finished second in the League and won the Roland Cup; the Washington Internationals Soccer Club; and the British Lions. He coached in the National Capital Soccer League for about ten years, during which time his teams won two NCSL Division One titles and Virginia State Championships, along with five consecutive Arlington Invitational Fall Tournament titles. Everett was inducted into the University of Bridgeport Hall of Fame in 2009, which was the 50th anniversary of the first NCAA final.
Hicabi "Turk" Emekli (Veteran) - Inducted 2014
Emekli's soccer career began in Turkey in the 1930's and continued in the United States from 1951 - 2010. Turk played an instrumental role in advancing college and professional soccer. As head coach, Turk led the Washingon Whips during the inaugural season of the NASL. Under Turk as player-head coach, Catholic University set national scoring records and won Mason-Dixon titles in 1956 and 1957; Catholic still surpasses the all-time best NCAA Division I records for team and individual goals scored per game average in a season. Turk, First Team All-Mason Dixon and 1992 Catholic Hall of Fame inductee, coached Catholic for 21 seasons. Recognized as the best player on the field by Galatasaray legend Gündüz Kılıç, Emekli played with Genclerbirligi Soccer Club, the Greek Americans in the German American Soccer League, Central Valet, Lido, and the Italian Americans in the National Soccer League. Turk later enjoyed a 40-year officiating career.
Joe “Eric” Baer (Veteran) – Inducted 2012
Joe was born in Germany and emigrated to Baltimore when he was ten. He achieved All-American honors at the University of Maryland and was named to the US Olympic team in 1952. After some time away from the game, Joe again became involved with the formation of Montgomery Soccer, Inc. His MSI travel team was a high-quality team that was allowed to play Virginia teams and enter what later became the National Capital Soccer League, which he helped organize and develop. Joe received the Founder’s Award from NCSL for his efforts in the development of youth soccer in the DC/Virginia/Maryland region. He was also a referee for many years.
Dennis Viollet (Veteran) – Inducted 2011
Dennis was a forward with Manchester United, where he scored 179 goals in 294 matches and played a big part in the winning of League Championships in1956 and 1957. He moved to Stoke City in 1962; the team won two Second Division Championship medals and one League Cup runners’ up medal. He coached the Washington Diplomats of the NASL for several years, and then moved to the New England Tea Men. The team relocated to Jacksonville, where Dennis became head coach at Jacksonville University. He then joined the Richmond Kickers, who in 1995 won the USISL Premier League title and the US Open Cup championship. Dennis finished his coaching career with the A-League Jacksonville Cyclones.
Bill Willis (Veteran) – Inducted 2011
Bill became involved with youth soccer when his sons joined the DC Stoddert Soccer League, where he served as coach and commissioner. While he was volunteer chairman of the Board of Directors of DCSSL the club doubled its membership. Bill instituted club partnering with other soccer organizations, including Georgetown University Men’s Soccer, created the Cherry Blossom Festival Soccer Tournament, and aided in the development of inner city soccer programs. He assisted with the development of DC Scores and served on its Board. Bill was involved with the upgrade of existing inner city soccer fields and the creation of new fields in the city. He also served as VYSA’s Director of Field Development.
Bill Shellenberger (Veteran) – Inducted 2010
Sports Illustrated called Bill “the winningest coach ever in college soccer” in 1978. He was the first collegiate soccer coach to win 300 games, completing his career with 371 wins and 31 consecutive winning seasons at Lynchburg College. He introduced soccer to the Lynchburg area in 1952, and two years later his Lynchburg Hornets became the fourth team in Virginia to play collegiate soccer. Bill was a coach, professor, and athletic director, and is credited with being a major force in the growth of collegiate soccer. He has been inducted into eight Halls of Fame, including the National Soccer Hall of Fame, was named Coach of the Year 28 times, and was recognized in 1991 by the Virginia General Assembly for his “Unparalleled Record of Achievement”. He also received the NSCAA’s Honor Award.
Pat McStay (Veterans Service) - Inducted 2009
Pat coached in many different capacities during his life. He was a high school coach for 16 years, an assistant coach at Old Dominion University, an ODP coach, and a head coach with Hampton Roads Piranhas for three seasons. He led the Piranhas to a National Championship appearance. Pat also was the Director of Coaching at the Norfolk United and Atlantic Soccer Clubs. He worked as a field producer at the 1994 World Cup in Florida and at the 1996 Olympics. Accepting this award is his wife, Joan, and his son, Pat.
John Ellis (Veterans Service) - Inducted 2007
John was born in England, and during the 1960’s and 70’s was a staff coach for the English Football Association, where he worked with the youth and National teams in developing soccer in Trinidad and Tobago, Thailand, Singapore, Hong Kong, and Malaysia. He was the Director and Staff Coach for National Coaching Qualifying Courses and the Director of the English Schools Player Development Program. As a coach and player, John also served as the Director of Soccer Coaching and Head Coach to the Combined Military Services of Great Britain. He was head coach of several semi-professional teams while also helping to develop the National team program. He came to the US in the early 1980’s and immersed himself in youth soccer coaching, including leading several teams to National Championships. He was the US Women’s National Team assistant coach when the team won a silver medal at the 2000 Olympics and a gold medal at the CONCACAF Gold Cup. John was a member of the VYSA Coaching Education Staff, president of Soccer Academy, Inc., and, in 2001, was recognized by the NSCCA with the “Lifetime Award” for services to youth soccer.
Nelson Kobren (Veterans Service) - Inducted 2006
Nelson was a Washington, DC, native who played tennis and football in high school. He continued playing tennis while on active duty in Germany and earned the title of US Army in Europe tennis champion in 1955. The following year, Nelson and seven others co-founded the D.C. Soccer Referees Association, which later became the Metropolitan Washington Soccer Referees Association. During his 40 years with the MWSRA, he served as Commissioner, Treasurer, President, and Executive Board member. In addition to actively serving as a soccer referee, he was a basketball official and softball umpire. After teaching physical education classes at the University of Maryland at College Park for four years, Nelson taught physical education and driver education at Montgomery Blair High School for 35 years. There he coached successful tennis and soccer teams and served as the Athletic Director. Nelson was inducted into the Maryland State Athletic Directors’ Hall of Fame in 1990. The Nelson Kobren Memorial Gymnasium was dedicated at Montgomery Blair High School in 1998.
Richard White (Veterans Service) - Inducted 2006
Richard was born in England and moved to the United States after World War II. He served in Suwon, Korea in 1951 - 1952. He had soccer balls shipped to him to kick around with the local children which he gifted to them when he returned home. He played soccer at the University of Florida from 1956-1960. In 1961, he played with the British Lions in Washington, DC, and several other teams, and finished his playing career with the Annandale “over 30 gang” in 1991. Richard began his coaching career in 1967 with the Annandale Boys Club 1964 Rebels/Apprentices, who in 1982 won the Maguire Cup in Omaha. He also coached many teams in Annandale, Vista, Braddock Road, Fredericksburg, and Stafford. From 1979 through 1983, Richard coached U16 Boys, U18 Girls, and U16 Girls State Select teams that participated in Region I competition. He retired to Tennessee, where he currently coaches the Adamsville High School boys’ and girls’ soccer teams, as well as Parks and Recreation Department soccer teams. He is in his 48th year coaching soccer.