The following are two letters that
have been sent to Calgary soccer clubs. If you feel that the ASA,
whatever its faults, should still be saved then I implore you to take
the same actions. Email your club and local District and let them know
that you want the ASA to continue. The baby should not be thrown out
with the bath water.
Using the soccer players of the
province as pawns in these games needs to stop, messing with Tier IV
provincials is one thing - killing the entire association is something
This message is going to some of the major clubs in Calgary. Apologies
if I have the wrong
contact information for any of you. Please feel free to forward this to
The following is an email I sent to various people in Calgary. I have
been doing my best to follow
the events in the Alberta Soccer Association, and I am concerned that
entire Association might fail. I think that the Calgary clubs can play
a significant role in
preventing this from happening.
It is clear that the current ASA Board of Directors is not running the
Association for the benefit of the members and players. It is time for
members of the Board to be replaced.
CMSA has the second-largest number of players in the province, so you
considerable weight. It is time for CMSA to reflect the views of its
have trouble believing that the members of CMSA would be in favour of
the Association. If, indeed, any of you are, then you should state that
publicly, and let your members and the soccer public in Alberta know
On the other hand, if you believe that the Association can be saved,
you are in
a good position to do something about it. Especially if you act as a
I admit that I don't know any of the people involved in this mess, so I
know who is most open to negotiation. At the CMSA level, the clubs are
responsible for electing the BOD, so you have the most direct means of
I am asking you to get together to do something to save the sport in
Alberta. Shaun Lowther
of NSD has taken a bold step. The rest of the major clubs in Calgary
should join him.
Dear soccer friends,
According to court documents
filed recently, Gary Steen, president
of CMSA, has called for the Alberta Soccer Association to be wound up.
that he has done this without consulting the members of CMSA or its
directors. In my view, this is irresponsible on his part, and could
damage to soccer in Alberta.
Apologies for sending a long email like this, but I think members of
community have to do something to save their sport.
What does this mean to you or your children?
- No new soccer facilities, including
a replacement to the Soccer Centre bubble. It would be irresponsible
for any government to allocate funds to a sport that can't run its own
- It will disrupt or ruin any
- It will mean that teams from
Alberta cannot go to national competitions.
- It will cost you more money. The
court costs are already substantial, and winding up an association will
likely take a large portion of whatever assets the ASA owns.
What has been happening? It's a
story. Here are some significant events.
- Chris Billings, elected President
of ASA in January 2010, was suspended without a proper investigation,
or a hearing. This is all against the bylaws of the ASA. Mr. Billings
claims that he has never been given any solid reasons for this
- The group that suspended Mr.
Billings took charge of the Association. They promptly fired some staff
and forced others out. There is at least one lawsuit proceeding against
the ASA because of this. Read the affidavit of Joel Butler
for some details of the harassment and bullying.
- They also ruined Tier IV
provincials for some players. Many were not allowed to play, others
were not allowed to receive their medals.
- Since then, they have been running
a campaign of intimidation.
- In early December, many of the
member districts of the ASA filed a petition for a Special General
Meeting of the ASA. The purpose of the meeting is to vote on the
removal of all members of the current Board of Directors. Gary Steen
would apparently prefer that the courts wind up the Association,
instead of having a meeting where the member districts of the ASA
exercise their democratic rights.
What does the Canadian Soccer
- This is where things get
interesting. Some directors of the CSA are playing their own political
games. They have given unconditional support to the board of the ASA,
and they have shown no desire to actually fix any problems. Instead,
they have assisted the board of the ASA in bullying and suspending
anybody who has tried to stand up against them.
- There is a vote scheduled for May,
2011, that could change the structure of the CSA. Currently, the Board
of Directors is made up of representatives from the provincial
associations. If the vote passes, the Board would instead be made up
representatives from regions in Canada, plus six appointed Directors,
who bring additional skill-sets, experience and capabilities necessary
to deal with the challenges and opportunities of today’s
soccer environment. This would mean that existing members of the board
would lose their positions and the associated perks. Is there a
connection between governance changes at the CSA and the mess at the
ASA? Possibly. Read Ben Knight
at Canadian Soccer News.
This seems unbelievable. What are
- Shaun Lowther played on the
Canadian national team and as a professional player in the NASL. He is
a member of the Canadian Soccer Hall of Fame. He is also the General
Manager of NSD Soccer Club in Calgary. He has asked for an entirely new
Board of Directors for ASA. Read what he has to say at Canadian Soccer News
How did this happen?
- For the full story, read the
original documents posted at Reform
- In brief, the people running the
ASA are too concerned with power and perks, and don't put their energy
into improving the game.
- They are also, according to
available evidence, forcing dedicated volunteers out of the sport
What can you do?
relating to this mess are posted at www.reformalbertasoccer.com
- Phone or email your local club.
Find out their position on this matter. Press them to take a stand. If
the clubs in Calgary act together they can force some changes on CMSA.
- Phone or email Gary Steen at CMSA.
Let him know your thoughts.
- Spread the word.