I’ve been a member of USA Fencing since 1984 and have been a full time Emergency Room physician for the past 18 years. I am the only physician member of the USA Fencing Board of Directors. My hands-on experience dealing with the pandemic for the past 12 months puts me in a unique position to help USA Fencing emerge safely and with proper logical understanding of Covid-19 and safety protocols. Fencing has been my lifelong passion and I’ve been involved in the sport in many different roles, both as a highly ranked international fencer and three-time Olympian and continue today as a youth fencing parent, a club owner, a coach, and as a veteran fencer.
At Large Board Member Candidate
At our fencing club we have actively sought to build a female coaching staff - currently three of our five coaches are female. In the past we were disappointed that not as many girls signed up for classes as boys and not as many girls continued after the first few months. In response we created girls only fencing classes which have allowed us to meet our goal of developing and retaining our female fencing students. Fencing is a fantastic sport and it is especially good for female athletes as it builds self reliance, confidence in physical combat, and leadership skills.
My top three goals for USA Fencing over the next four years are:
Continue to assist in the strategic planning of competitions to allow our athletes to safely return to the sport they love. I have fought hard for gender specific competitions in our division to encourage our beginning female students to participate.
Increase fundraising and donations for USA Fencing to ensure the long term viability of our sport. We need resources to expand our referee pool, to stabilize our organization and assist clubs, and to allow our sport to expand to diverse groups including all age groups, and for people of all backgrounds. I especially support club assistance and awards for attracting and developing both diverse and female fencers and coaches.
Make fencing a mainstream sport in the United States. Despite many sports being closed, the popularity of fencing continues to grow. By implementing the proper protocols we can continue to expand our membership and introduce fencing to the community. I hope to increase the number of NCAA fencing programs and find ways for schools to include fencing in their sports education and curriculum. Participating in collegiate sports is a predictor of career success and fencers should have more opportunities.