By: John Puglisi, NISOA President
It is with mixed emotions that I announce that John Van de Vaarst informed me of his resignation from his position as NISOA Director of Operations to spend more time with his family. As one of NISOA’s core values is “family first”, I am pleased for John and his family, however, his contributions, dedication and tireless support of NISOA will be missed.
John selflessly served NISOA for over 35 years performing just about every role and duty imaginable. A short list of John’s positions include being president of two chapters (Central Maryland and New Jersey), a NISOA Regional Representative, NISOA Secretary, NISOA Vice President, NISOA President and NISOA Hall of Fame member. As a National Clinician, John served as NISOA’s Director of Instruction and long time lead clinician at Elizabethtown for the NISOA Referee Training Camp. John developed the current format for the Annual General Meeting/Convention in his role as Convention Director for many years. His wife Mary was a founding member of the NISOA Auxiliary. His honors and awards are numerous and include the Ray Bernabei NISOA Honor Award. John is also a member of the South New Jersey Soccer Hall of Fame.
Since 2008, John has been the NISOA Director of Operations performing the responsibilities for NISOA’s daily operations. In addition, John wrote monthly instructional articles for the NISOA Newsletter and web site. He championed the NISOA Interscholastic Division which focuses on improving high school soccer officiating across the country. Many chapter contacts and presidents knew John as the source for all kinds of answers about NISOA policy, insurance products and where to get replacement badges.
I am very fortunate to have worked with John. He welcomed me to the organization, treated me and my family with respect and courtesy. He truly has NISOA in his blood. The NISOA family is indebted to John and Mary for all their dedication and work.