USSMA January 12th Update

US World Championships Team - Sunlight Qualifying Races
The second qualifying event weekend will be held this weekend at Sunlight Mountain, January 14th and 15th.  Be sure to check the COSMIC website for race details and registration.  While the USSMA will be on hand to inspect and review courses and assist with marshaling, the races are put on by the COSMIC team.
 
Sprint Selection Criteria:
The top 4 men and women finishers at the Heathen Challenge Sprint event will qualify for the worlds sprint event.
 
Teams Selection Criteria:
The top 8 men and women finishers at the Heathen Challenge Individual event will qualify for the worlds teams event.
 
Individual Selection Criteria:
The fourth and final slot for the individual event will be awarded to the top male and female finisher at the Heathen Challenge event that did not qualify at Northwest Passage. 
 
Athletes who qualify for the World Championship team will be notified immediately after the Sunlight weekend, with an official invitation sent out 1/17/17, and will have one week to either confirm or deny their spot on the world championship team.  
 
Good luck and have fun racing!
 
2017 USSMA Points 
The USSMA is pleased to publish the 2017 Points and Rankings System. The USSMA Points List is based on the ISMF World Cup Point classification as outlined in Section 2.1 of the “ISMF Sporting and Ranking Rules”. The goal of the Points List is to provide an accurate measurement tool for competitors’ results. Check out the points page to see a list of Points Races.
 
Competitors wishing to score points will be required to obtain a USSMA license.  For 2017, a USSMA license is free.  Click here to apply for a license.  The license is used to identify you as a racer and will be required on registrations for events if you are in the race/elite category.  Updated points rankings will be posted on the website next week. 
 
USSMA 2017 Planning Continued – Areas of Focus
In my last communication I shared with you the areas of focus we have identified.  Since then we have identified teams and leaders of each area of focus and have plans and next steps in place to drive each forward.  
 
Below is a summary of the 2016-17 USSMA Areas of Focus.  Each focus area has been prioritized, has an officer team lead, and supporting USSMA board/team participants.  They will also be soliciting racers and others who have expertise in these areas and are willing to provide input or assist.  If there are areas of focus that you would like to get involved in please let me know and I'll inform the team leads so they can reach out to you. 
 
Going forward, I will be soliciting status updates from team leads on a monthly basis.  I will consolidate the updates and communicate them out to the greater board / team.  I will also be holding monthly officer board meetings and communicate out meeting minutes.  And, of course, provide ongoing updates to the race community.
 
My intent is to be transparent and keep communication frequent and open as we work together as a team to accomplish our goals.
 
2016-17 USSMA Areas of Focus
 
Organizational Structure
Priority Level: High
Leader: Ram Mikulas
Participants: Matt Hickey, Nick Francis, Chad Brackelsberg, Jonah Adley
  • Establish non-profit status and EIN, including official bylaws and operating structure.
  • Create an Internal Communication strategy.
Budget 
Priority Level: High
Leader: Nick Francis
Participants: Ram Mikulas, Chad Brackelsberg, Pete Swenson
  • Review existing budget and begin building out a more formal one to include all new initiatives.
Fund Raising
Priority Level: High
Leader: Matt Hickey
Participants: Ram Mikulas, Nick Francis, Joe Howdyshell, Pete Swenson, Joe Risi
  • Review existing strategy / plan and determine next steps.  
  • Initiate a Sponsorship strategy / plan and determine next steps.
USOC
Priority Level: High
Leader: Chad Brackelsberg
Participants: Ram Mikulas, Matt Hickey, Nick Francis, Pete Swenson
  • Review existing engagement strategy / plan and determine next steps.
External Communication and Marketing
Priority Level: Medium
Leader: Ram Mikulas
Participants: Matt Hickey, Nick Francis, Chad Brackelsberg, Joe Howdyshell, Evan Johnson, Teague Holmes, Joe Risi, Youth Rep TBD
  • Develop and implement communications plans for racers, press/media, race directors, etc.
  • Review website, social media, email campaigns, etc.
PRO2022 (Project 2022) &Youth Development
Priority Level: Medium
Leader: Pete Swenson / Joe Howdyshell
Participants: Ram Mikulas, Matt Hickey, Chad Brackelsberg, Teague Holmes, Janelle Smiley, Stevie Thomson, Joe Risi, Rhett Griggs, Youth Rep TBD
  • Review existing strategy / plan, next steps, and ongoing execution and communication.
  • Get all board members up to speed on the vision, strategy, and plan.
  • Communicate externally to the race community.
US Coaching Development
Priority Level: Medium
Leader: Joe Howdyshell
Participants: Chad Brackelsberg, Pete Swenson, Teague Holmes, Janelle Smiley
  • Review existing strategy / plan and determine next steps.
  • Identify and train coaches to teach the PRO2022 camps.
  • Identify and schedule all 2017 camps.
  • Review next steps and ongoing execution and communication.
Race
Priority Level: Medium
Leader: Nick Francis
Participants: Ram Mikulas, Matt Hickey, Chad Brakelsberg, Pete Swenson, Jerimy Arnold, Joe Risi, Jonathan Shefftz, Jeff Rivest, Eric Bunce
  • Review USSMA role in working with and assisting races and events.
  • Review Race Director support strategy and plan.
  • Communication and execution of 2017 Points System.  And, review opportunities for future enhancements/changes.
Worlds 
Priority Level: Medium
Leader: Chad Brackelsberg
  • Participants: Ram Mikulas, Matt Hickey, Nick Francis, Joe Howdyshell
  • Review and execution of 2017 plan.  Traveling USSMA staff: Chad, Ram, Matt, Joe
  • Review existing strategy and determine future changes.
National Team 
Priority Level: Medium
Leader: Joe Howdyshell
Participants: Ram Mikulas, Matt Hickey, Nick Francis, Chad Brackelsberg, Pete Swenson, Teague Holmes, Rhett Griggs
  • Execution of 2017 selection and Worlds participation plan.
  • Review opportunities to expand definition and participation of the team for 2017 and beyond.
  • Also associated with PRO2022.
Athlete Advisory
Priority Level: Low
Leader: Matt Hickey
Athlete Advisors: Teague Holmes, Janelle Smiley
Participants: Ram Mikulas, Stevie Thomson
  • Review existing athlete representation strategy and determine future changes.
Membership 
Priority Level: Low
Leader: Matt Hickey
Participants: Ram Mikulas, Nick Francis, Chad Brackelsberg, Joe Risi, Jonathan Shefftz, Jeff Rivest, Eric Bunce
  • Review existing strategy / plan and determine next steps.  And, review opportunities for future enhancements/changes.
 
As a big part of this, we will need to ensure we follow the intention of the USSMA and our Vision, Mission, and Goals.    
 
The US Ski Mountaineering Association is recognized by the ISMF (International Ski Mountaineering Federation) as the governing body of the sport of ski mountaineering in the United States
 
Vision - Expand the sport of Ski Mountaineering throughout the United States.
 
Mission - The United States Ski Mountaineering Association (USSMA) sanctions and governs competitive ski mountaineering racing in the US and promotes and fosters recreational ski mountaineering through access, resources, education and community.
 
Goals – Develop and Grow the sport ~ Compete nationally and internationally ~ Coordinate events: races, development camps, National Team camps, referee camps
 
Current High Level Primary Focus – Develop the association into a fully functional national sports organization, raise the capital required to support our mission of developing the sport in the USA, and preparing a team for the Olympics.
 
It's so great to be working with so many passionate people and I look forward to working together as a team to move the sport forward.
 
Ram