I wish it were possible for all JVA members to attend the AVCA Convention. It is such an energizer going into the club season. There are new ideas and lessons to be learned during the on-court and classroom sessions. Plus, there’s time to socialize with coaches we may only see on the opposite side of the net.

This year we were especially fortunate to have an amazing keynote speaker at our Annual Meeting in Rhonda Revelle. Rhonda is the legendary Women’s Softball Coach at the University of Nebraska. She is beginning her 24th season and is in the Nebraska Hall of Fame, winning more games, 878, than any other head coach – male or female – in the history of Husker Athletics. Big 8, Big 12 and Big Ten Coach of the Year.

Rhonda is a passionate speaker and spoke from the heart and personal experience on how to develop a winning culture in our club programs: a culture that permeates your entire club from leadership, through coaches, players and families; a culture that builds trust, respect and unity. Rhonda spoke to us about “game changers”: the things that will energize you and your program.

She asked us: “What is your why?”  
“Who needs you today?”
And then at the end of the day, “Who still needs me?”
“What are you doing TODAY that works?”
Would you want to be coached by you?”

In addition, Rhonda led us through a very thoughtful self-examination of ourselves as a leader and a coach. Look at your personnel: do the people fit in with your culture? There is no neutral. Your staff either adds to your culture or takes away from it. How are your communication skills, verbal and non-verbal?

Rhonda emphasized trust. People do not care how much you know, but how much you care. People don’t remember what you say but how you make them feel. That feeling that your staff and your members have is your culture. What do you want it to be? Rhonda reminded us that, as coaches, we have more impact on other people in one year than an average person will have in a lifetime.Finally, Rhonda reminded us to love the game, love your job, love the rhythm of your season, love your challenges, love all the people in your program, and finally love the awesomeness of the opportunity in front of you every day.

Rhonda’s presentation will be available in the JVA member resources for club directors and coaches to watch with their member login.

I was inspired to examine the culture of the JVA. I want our members to trust that every day we are doing the best job for them that we can possibly do. We try our best to represent you passionately and with respect. Because our “Why” is to be the voice for junior volleyball clubs, coaches and players, to grow and develop junior volleyball across the country, and in order to do that, we want to make sure our member clubs are successful. You are our “Why”.

Our Annual Meeting is also time to recognize individuals that have contributed to junior volleyball and our association.

JVA Coaches Service Awards
Special recognition was given to past Board Presidents Ron Kordes and John Sample who were awarded a life-time JVA membership.

We also recognized the contributions of our Beach Chair, Jeff Smith, with the JVAAbove and Beyond Award. This award is in recognition for service to JVA by providing innovation and excellence in beach programming and events and forsharing his experience and knowledge with fellow beach clubs to help grow and improve junior beach volleyball programs across the country.

Our Annual Report was distributed.  We are excited to announce that we passed 2,000 members and saw a membership increase of 68% from December 2014 to December 2015. We rolled out our new JVA truck, which made the trip to Omaha with Zach Colston and Ashley Krage, JVA staffers, and all our gear.

Finally, I want to thank the individuals that presented sessions at the convention on behalf of JVA: Deb Grafentin (River City Jrs.), Eric Schultz (Club Fusion), Stein Metzger (USCLA Beach), Sherry Fadool (Triangle), Bob Westbrook (A5), Gwen Eggbert (Nebraska Juniors), Ron Kordes (KIVA), John Sample (TAV), Jodi Schramm (Premier), Ed Tolentino (UConn), Laura Benaing (Minnesota), Kristine Jensen (Northwestern). Lisa Pierce, from our staff moderated two of our sessions.

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