Hidajet Tica Joins Iowa Soccer as Manager of Referee Services
DES MOINES, Iowa (April 24, 2019) – Iowa Soccer’s team has grown again and welcomes Hidajet “Hido” Tica as its new Manager of Referee Services. Tica is a longtime member of the referee community in Iowa and is currently the head boy’s coach at Southeast Polk High School. During his refereeing career, Tica earned a National Referee badge and worked Major League Soccer matches and intends to continue blowing the whistle at college matches.
He brings his refereeing, coaching and playing background to a new – and unique -- position at Iowa Soccer: Manager of Referee Services, which will be part of the Competitions Department and which will also provide support to another organization, the Iowa Referee Committee (IRC). The primary responsibility for the position is to support the development and growth of referees.
Craig Winger, Director of Competitions, on the development of the Manager of Referee Services position: “Iowa Soccer has worked very hard to provide soccer opportunities, influence and grow the game at all levels through unique pathways, to develop athletes and educate coaches, and to improve the experience of being part of the sport for all involved. As we pursue our ambitions, our Competitions and our Technical Departments have expanded and we’re engaged daily with members to ensure a positive direction. We now have a position on our staff that can focus on our referees, assignors and mentors. We’re excited to be working with the IRC to make this position possible and for Hidajet to make an impact!”
“The creation of this position will benefit Iowa’s referees in numerous ways and continues the strong relationship between Iowa Soccer and the IRC. We’re very excited to work with Hido!” says Tyler Eason, Chair of the IRC.
Addressing the challenge of recruiting and retaining referees in today’s increasingly volatile youth sports environment has been a key element of Iowa Soccer’s strategic plan. As the organization has grown its staff and increased its capacity to support all factions of the game, incremental steps have been taken along the way to address referees: restructuring its select and recreational leagues in ways that better serve player development and actual referee availability, envisioning/planning for the Manager of Referee Services role on the staff, merging the IRC website into Iowa Soccer’s site, adding a longtime IRC contributor to the Iowa Soccer Board, welcoming a new Executive Director who earned a National Referee badge, collaborating with the IRC and hiring a candidate of Tica’s quality.
Of the opportunity, Tica shares, “I am excited to be part of the great group of people at Iowa Soccer. During the interview process I saw that everyone involved has a love for the game of soccer. All my life I have been involved with the game as a player, official, coach and spectator and now I am going to have a chance to be an administrator and influence the referee community in a new role. I look forward to working with clubs and referee organizations throughout the state to evaluate and improve all involved.”