OKLAHOMA CITY – USA Softball, the National Governing Body of Softball in the United States, announced today that 270 umpires have been honored for their years of service and expertise by becoming members of the USA Softball Umpire Awards Program. One of the nation’s largest officiating organizations, USA Softball umpires are nationally recognized as the most trained and proficient in the sport and have the opportunity to be recognized for their dedication to the sport through four available outlets: the Medals Program, the National Indicator Fraternity, the Elite Umpire Program and World Baseball Softball Confederation (WBSC) Certification.
“What an accomplishment for these umpires who will join the prestigious USA Softball Umpire Awards Program,” said USA Softball Director of Umpires Kevin Ryan. “Our Award Programs are designed so that umpires can be rewarded for their years of service and achievements through their umpiring career. We’re proud to honor and recognize these individuals and their respective associations for the countless hours they put in to refine and enhance their skills. Congratulations to all recipients!”
One of the more popular programs for USA Softball umpires, the Medals Program launched in 1999 and rewards umpires for their years of service who have not been assigned to a Regional or National Championship. With four levels for this program, the Medals Program encompasses all levels of umpires who support the USA Softball program, whether at the local or national level. Umpires who have been registered for three years (Blue Level), five years (Bronze Level), seven years (Silver Level) or more than seven years (Gold Level) can apply to the Medals Program. Members of the Medals Program receive a ball cap, certificate and pin which symbolizes their achievement and a variety of leisure wear, jewelry and trophies are available for purchase. Click here to see the 2016 additions to the USA Softball Medals Program.
The National Indicator Fraternity was founded in 1986 and honors those individuals who have advanced to the next level in the umpire program. In order to obtain membership into the National Indicator Fraternity, umpires must have been registered for at least seven years and have umpired or served as a National Championship Umpire-in-Chief (UIC) or Assistant UIC at three USA Softball National Championships. Umpires can apply for the National Indicator Fraternity annually and members receive a certificate, membership card and a patch. Click here to see the 2016 additions to the USA Softball National Indicator Fraternity.
Launched in 2003, the Elite Umpire Program is the highest honor a USA Softball umpire can obtain other than selection into the National Softball Hall of Fame. To become eligible, an umpire must have been registered for at least seven years, be a current member who is in good standing and participated in at least four National Championships and two of which must have been in the same category of play and from an upper level National Championship. Umpires can apply for either Fast Pitch, Slow Pitch and Modified Pitch, and those who are selected will receive a ball cap, membership card and a framed certificate. Click here to see the 2016 additions to the USA Softball Elite Umpire Program.
For more information on the USA Softball Umpire Program, please visit USASoftball.com.