Category Archives: Election

2022 Candidates’ Question Responses

1. Currently there are no term limits for serving NBUA Board of Directors. Should there be term limits?

PEYTON COFFIN – I believe the term limits are set by members’ votes. If the members believe another candidate is more qualified than an existing board member at election time, they will vote as such.

HANK MARGESON – The nature of life tends to regulate the length of a person’s tenure on the NBUA Board of Directors. Over the past several elections new Board members have joined and have brought their ideas forward. At the same time, there’s a few Board members with a history of serving which adds continuity to the mix. Ideally, the mingling of newer members with veterans enables creativity while honoring our forbearers who helped make the NBUA the fine organization it is.

GREG OLMSTEAD – I do not believe so. Members serve 2-year terms so every two years there is an opportunity to remove board members and replace them with new candidates. Furthermore, every year the new board elects officers so annually there can be a shake up even if no new members join.

Before every election the association has to recruit and plead with people to run. Removing people dedicated to working for the NBUA and who still want to volunteer their time will not make the association better.

EARL SMITH – We are volunteers in our positions…and can be voted out at any time….if this question is asking if we need this “safeguard” I do not think it is warranted. The process now ensures that we have half of the board up for election each year. We can resign, not seek re-election, or be voted out of the board positions….possession of a board position does not mean it is a given we will keep it.

BRIAN SWEET – My short answer is “No.”

The use of term limits is most implemented by voters to prevent the accumulation and abused of political power. This is why the U.S. Constitution was amended to limit Presidents to only serving two terms after President Franklin Roosevelt, who was elected 4 times, died in office.

NBUA is run by a board of directors, who each volunteer their time and efforts to run and manage our organization. Allowing those members who understand and know the background on the issues and also desire to serve on the board should be allowed to continue to do so. But I also believe it is also important to strongly consider new candidates and board members who bring fresh perspectives and ideas to our organization. As voting members of the association, your vote is the most equitable way to implement term limits.

HENRY VON JOUANNE – I generally support term limits for various positions (i.e. city, county, or state positions); however, I do not currently see a driving reason for term limits for serving on the NBUA Board of Directors.  As a current board member, I can genuinely assert that serving on the board is very time-consuming and not many can support this time commitment.  If an NBUA member believes a board member has served too long and is no longer effective or is not serving as an advocate for the NBUA, then the members can elect to not vote for the candidate.

2. How actively do you see your Board of Director position as to actively increasing the marketing, advertising and social media positioning in recruiting new members?

PEYTON COFFIN – NBUA has Facebook and Instagram, which I opened, and our web page. We do well with Google hits. Most of the inquiries we get through the website portal indicate that an umpire suggested the candidate look into the website. A few years ago, I had recruiting cards printed up and we’ve been trying to make sure all members carry a couple in their wallet and lineup card holder if an opportunity to recruit arises. More will be handed out at the banquet. As always, our members are the best recruiting tool.

HANK MARGESON – I think all members of the NBUA have a stake in helping to recruit new members and help keep and retain members. It is my hope that by actively advertising, marketing, and using social media, we’ll catch eyeballs we would have ordinarily missed in our recruiting efforts. But the bottom line is each of us is the best ambassador for the NBUA every time we walk onto the baseball field.

EARL SMITH – My board position does not specifically deal with social media efforts to brand, market, and recruit for the NBUA. We rely on those members of the association that have that expertise to help and guide us in our social media presence. We also realize how the younger generations interact with media and, I believe, we try to have a presence and exposure. In the current officiating environment, it is extremely difficult to recruit and retain officials…. this shortage will have impacts on all of us willing to pursue this vocation. We will be asked to work more, while compensation creeps up slowly. Even if we were to have a robust social media budget, and more aggressively seek recruits in social media advertising, I don’t think the returns would justify the outgoing money.

BRIAN SWEET – Having served on the Recruiting and Retention Committee several years ago and that experience, our recruiting efforts need to go beyond social media. In my 15 years as a member of NBUA, the most effective recruiting tool we have is our current membership and the networks we all have in our work and personal circles.

Over the past several years, many of our recruits have come from PSSBL players. What a great fit. People who love and know baseball. On a personal level, I continue to volunteer my time as an umpire with Washington District 9 Little League (LL) and over the years have been able to share my experience with NBUA and quite a few joined NBUA.

The use of social media could play a significant roll in reaching out to likely the biggest and largest untapped pool of new umpires. High School and College students. In my regular job for the Port of Seattle as Sr. Construction Manager – Airport Terminals & Concourses, I spend quite a bit of time in the hiring of employees, Construction Management Consultants and Contractors. We use social media and marketing to help us find and hire the most qualified. My experience will be a significant benefit to our Board of Directors.

HENRY VONJUANNE – As a current board member, I have promoted increased marketing and social media to recruit new members.  The explosion of social media suggests we can and should increase our on-line availability.  This should be a priority for the Board of Directors.

3. The current game compensation appears to be the same regardless of if the crew is 2-man or 1-man. What do you think about increasing the 1-man game fee over the standard rate listed?

PEYTON COFFIN – There is an increase. High School game fees are set by WIAA/WOA. Varsity baseball game fees are $66.75 each for a 2-man crew and $74.75 for a solo umpire. Sub-Varsity fees are $55.25 for 2-man and $63.25 for a 1-man game. Summer league game fees also increase for 1-man games by at least $11.00.

Where baseball umpires are at a disadvantage is working the 2nd High School game at the same site. An $18.00 travel fee is paid for the 1st game, but not the 2nd. That’s not so bad for basketball or volleyball (the other two sports I officiate) because you basically end game #1, sit down, hydrate, relax, walk back on the court, blow your whistle and get the 2nd game underway. Baseball umpires have to change uniforms, at times in inclement weather. A game fee of $37.25 for the 2nd sub-Varsity game that could go well over 2 hours and include changing uniforms in the cold is simply ridiculous. That is something we are working to change.

Reminder: Officials will get a $15.00 increase for High School games next season.

HANK MARGESON – Our current game fee structure pays a 1-person game fee of (on average) $15 more than a 2-person crew. If you worked a solo game and were not properly compensated, please contact our Assignor so we can remedy that situation

GREG OLMSTEAD – I am absolutely for this. In fact I believe it should be offered to many levels of our customers as a way for them to save money, NBUA provide more coverage, and individual umpires compensated

EARL SMITH – I was under the impression that the 1-man game fee was compensated better than if the game were officiated over with the two-man system. I would support a better game fee for one man officiating…. but I also believe we should not umpire in the one-man system. I did not join the association to do one man mechanics. We have more games than umpires…. this is a fact…. but then we should retain those customers that best fit our association’s needs and stay within our means.

BRIAN SWEET – I know directly the WOA does increase our game fee for 1-umpire high school games by $8 and it would be great if there were similar increases for all our games when worked by 1 umpire. A higher game fee for 1-umpire games could and should be negotiated into our contracts.

Sounds simple and sounds straightforward, right? However, we need to carefully consider this as there could be unintended consequences by including a 1-umpire game fee schedule in our contracts. One potential consequence may be those leagues routinely scheduling their games with just 1 umpire to save money. Based on your and my experience, we know that 1-umpire games are less effective.

HENRY VONJOUANNE – I believe there are two parts to this question:

1) If a game is submitted as two-man by the customer, and the game is worked by one umpire, I believe the game fee should be increased.

2) Some leagues sign agreements with the NBUA that request one-man only, and the game fee is part of the agreement.  In this case, we allocate the agreed-to game fee.   

4. What do you think about the 2nd and 3rd year WOA fee increase of $3.00 and then $2.00 and keeping the first game travel fee?

PEYTON COFFIN – I think it’s preposterous to not even meet inflation. I touched on this subject while speaking with Todd Stordahl, Executive Director of the WOA, a month ago. He is well aware of the inequity. Those that were heavily involved in the fee increase negotiation with the WIAA, such as your president, Hank Margeson, were mainly concerned with getting the $15.00 bump and battle for following yearly increases after that was secured. They succeeded.

HANK MARGESON – While it would be nice to amend an agreement between the WOA and WIAA for years 2 and 3 of the current agreement, unless the WIAA comes to the WOA to suggest changes are needed, the likelihood of any changes to compensation are slim. Having said that, I have committed to working with the WOA to ensure that umpire’s compensation continues to increase and the penalty for working two games at one site is eliminated. It’s an uphill battle, but something I’m happy to advocate for on behalf of the membership.

GREG OLMSTEAD – I would prefer a flat rate for any game and remove the travel fee – except for very long distances traveled.

EARL SMITH – The WOA is increasing our game fees yes, but our membership in the WOA will also increase……The NBUA makes a member “whole” in the sense that we make the first and second game fees of a double header the same, and we do that at the out-of-pocket expense of the association. The message to the WOA should be, we will dispatch a second crew and not expect our umpires to cover double headers if the game fees are not compensatory and equal. This may jeopardize our relationship with the WOA, but we are being taken advantage of here.

BRIAN SWEET – While $3 and $2 increases seem very small, we must look at the total picture. My understanding is the 1st year increase for all HS officials will increase $15/game in the 2022/2023 school year. In total games fees will go up $20/game over three years or 30% for varsity and 36% for sub-varsity games. Those are very acceptable “raises” for most anyone. So overall the planned increases are very acceptable and very well deserved by all officials, not just umpires.

Regarding the travel fee, my position is straight forward. The travel fee should be eliminated and $18 be included in all game fees.

HENRY VONJOUANNE – The NBUA Board of Directors has learned that game fees in Washington are generally far below the fees in similar urban areas around the country.  The Board of Directors has therefore approached the WOA for game fee increases above the current WOA fee schedule.  I support our efforts to increase game fees because there is no reason to be paid less than an umpire in a similar urban area.  In addition, I believe increased game fees can contribute towards improved recruitment.

Regarding the first game travel fee, I support keeping this fee.  The travel fee is oriented towards umpires in remote areas of the state; however, one can readily drive a long distance – perhaps 100 miles – in a remote area in less time it takes me to travel from my workplace to Eastlake (on a weeknight).

5. With the seemingly increasing parent and coaching umpire abuse, what do you think about the NBUA sanctioning teams, putting them on notice?

PEYTON COFFIN – I believe NBUA should consider sanctioning a team if the coaches and/or spectators are abusive toward the umpires after being officially warned or, in the event of contact, immediately. NBUA does not involve itself with a league’s discipline of a coach, as it should not. However, if necessary to protect the umpires and the sanctity of the baseball game and the youth players, informing a league that NBUA will not be providing services to Team “X” for a week or 10 days is appropriate. I wrote a resolution which the board passed to insure all members had confidence that NBUA could and would act when necessary.

It can be considered a “cooling off” period for that team and it’s a, hopefully never having to be implemented after a warning, tool in NBUA’s toolbox.

Players and spectators tend to conform to the culture of the head coach and assistant coaches. I believe that in the very unlikely event that NBUA sanctions a team, every other team in the league would hear about it within hours and league-wide behavior would change.

It’s also a bit tougher to recruit when the potential recruit has just witnessed uncontrolled screaming and cussing directed at an umpire.

HANK MARGESON – The NBUA generally does not prescribe consequences that a league or team metes out to a player or coach. Rather, we work with the team or the league to ensure that steps are taken to adjust the behavior when umpires are threatened. Examples from the past include advocating for a player to be banished from a league for a particularly egregious action and recommending a one game suspension for ejected participants. During this current season a warning was issued to a league regarding the behavior of a team which had several incidents over the past few years. The warning stated that further service would be withdrawn if additional incidents were encountered.

GREG OLMSTEAD – The reality is our ejections and incidents are on a downward trend. Better umpire training and culture and teams starting to get it. MLB no longer has the huge tirades that fed the culture.

My suggestion is that we allow the league officials we work with to maintain control of their teams and discipline members. That can go both ways as on occasion umpires misbehave and we can use their feedback to make our own ranks stronger. Strengthening the relationship of the league officials and board will make for better long-term results.

EARL SMITH – As we do on the field, we have a process in handling game friction. Ignore, acknowledge, warn, eject……I believe we can and should adopt some sort of similar protocols for teams and organizations that do nothing to offending coaches/teams. We will have ejections, unfortunately it is the reality of the officiating climate today. They may increase annually as the behaviors of players, parents, and coaches have not magically aligned with the tenants of sportsmanship. What this question suggests is withholding services. This could be a way of punishing egregious incidents. We could warn, then withhold our services. We have actually done this in the past with a client who continually had coaching staff ejections. If we were to adopt a policy, it would be difficult to implement as each situation is unique and it can be open to interpretation. We as board members do not often see the ejections firsthand.

BRIAN SWEET – Most if not all of us have read or seen the numerous videos on social media and in the news about abuse of officials in youth sports. As a member of the NBUA Board I would have no issues addressing any situation one of our members encountered with a team or a coach.

If elected, one of the first items I would bring up for discussion will be the inclusion of a contract clause to address this concern. Currently as Sr. Construction Manager for the Port of Seattle, my team and I are updating all our construction contracts to include language for an “Acceptable Workplace”. It is an anti-bullying and anti-hazing requirement with consequences for non-compliance and would be the model for what I would propose to the Board.

HENRY VONJOUANNE – The NBUA currently has a policy to address serious umpire abuse:  

1) we can place a team on notice that any further egregious behavior will result in with-holding services, or

2) we notify a team that we are with-holding services.

Note that the Board of Directors receives all ejection (or behavior) reports, as such, the better we are as an organization in documenting serious umpire abuse, the better we can address the situation with our policies.

6. Currently there is no fall NBUA training. What do you think about NBUA offering training during fall ball games during the nicer fall weather to supplement the February on field training and have those hours count towards the tier training requirement?

PEYTON COFFIN – I think it’s a great idea but, realistically, who is going to do the training?

NBUA’s Director of training, his staff and the trainers put in an inordinate amount of time to coordinate and conduct the annual training. Trying to assign a trainer to a single game is a time commitment a trainer might not volunteer for. The best in-season training comes from your partner’s post-game comments and suggestions –and our mentor program.

HANK MARGESON – The NBUA has a rich history of training during fall ball, mostly by working local Junior College fall games. When the NBUA stopped providing umpires for NWAC schools, we also stopped providing free service for those schools. That’s freed us up to handle more youth fall ball games which could easily be used as an on-field training opportunity, especially for learning, practicing, and perfecting 3-person mechanics. And yes, training credit for the following season would be counted.

GREG OLMSTEAD – Typically, our volunteer training teams are exhausted at the end of the season. I believe in theory this is a good idea, but I worry more about tapping into our resources. I would opt for simply good peer feedback rather than an organized program.

EARL SMITH – This on-the-job approach to training does exist at some levels for our officials…. There is the concept of volunteering in college fall ball situations when umpires are trying to attain the collegiate level of officiating. The training staff works incredibly hard in the spring before games start to give our officials the best training in the area. We do not live in a sunshine state….and asking them to have both a spring and a fall training schedule is a bit much, again, these are not paid positions…..we should all have the mentality of “each one teach one” in our mentorship and partner feedback….I for one, have gotten better by asking for, and listening to, constructive feedback. The collegiate fall ballgames have officials mentoring throughout the live game, attempting to teach, and vet officials for that level…. the system has its advantages for the College Assigner/Association….Participation is “mandatory” for the less tenured officials, and it is a learning opportunity. officials have a chance to work in the three-umpire system, move around the field, and get some repetitions in. I am not saying the NBUA could not do the same thing, but as I said, this is all volunteer on behalf of the officials and the mentors…. the only thing suggested in the question might be a training hour requirement could be satisfied…… Nothing is out of the realm of possibility, but I think the training block in the spring is excellent, and while the weather is more accommodating in the fall, it is a big lift to develop and implement training when it is all volunteer hours.

BRIAN SWEET – This suggestion falls right in line with the new field training we implemented at the start of this season bringing 6-8 umpires to work live scrimmages. The feedback from trainees this past training period was extremely positive and we are looking forward to expanding it next year. Having served on the Training Committee for the past 3 years, I am 100% in favor of the concept of 3-man training in the Fall. I’ve had several conversations with other Training Committee members about this concept during this season.

As with any new program, we should begin with a single training focus. For the “Fall” training, the 3-umpire system was discussed. During the season, there is no time for on the field 3-umpire training, we learn it “on-the-job”. Fall ball fits the bill to provide this training to our members and should be counted toward next year’s training.

In summary, I would also add that I’m proud of the training that NBUA provides its members. It directly reflects the quality of the product we put on the field; however, we can’t rest on our accomplishments or simply relax when we’ve “checked” the box at the end of each preseason training period. One of NBUA’s biggest obstacles to bringing on new umpires is training. With a few exceptions, NBUA does not add new members during the season. When we do find individuals interested in umpiring in April/May/June their training is “trial by fire”. I believe that if NBUA can develop a mid-season training program for new umpires, we can increase our membership by capturing high school and college students among others and provide on-line training through an online platform, such as YouTube. If the internet can show me how to replace a heater coil in a dryer, it can provide the classroom training during mid-season for new umpires.

HENRY VONJOUANNE – As the current NBUA training focal, I have awarded training credit to those that supplement their NBUA training by training with outside organizations (e.g. Black and Blue, pro-school).  

Note that we are hoping to conduct training at the upcoming fall-ball games at Lake Washington High School.  The focus will probably be on 3-man mechanics; however, we are considering mixing-in two-man mechanics as well.  We anticipate this training will count towards the tier training requirement.   

2022 Combined Candidate Statements

Henry Von Jouanne

I am honored to be considered again for an NBUA Board of Director position.  I have completed two terms – four years – as a board member and I am eager to continue serving for another term. 

Why am I interested in serving on the board?  Because those that went before us built a great organization and I feel compelled to do all I can to maintain the quality and reputation of the NBUA.  I served as the Training director the past four years and I am proud of the training programs we put-together.  If selected to continue as the Training director, I pledge to continue developing high quality training programs – leveraging on the great umpiring talent we have available. 

My goal as a Board Member is simple:  to fully and enthusiastically support the NBUA mission.  That is, “We deliver the highest quality service to our customers by umpiring all games to the best of our ability and with fairness to all participants via state-of-the-art training and evaluation and demonstrated examples of inclusion.”  The NBUA has – in my opinion – always separated itself with a strong training program – so I believe our excellence and “highest quality” starts with training.  And I believe the training starts with emphasis on the basics:  superior rules knowledge and superior mechanics knowledge.  Of course, this begins with the formal pre-season classroom, field training, and cage training.  The training extends to the mentorship program and the important and valuable pre-game and post-game discussions.  A strong and comprehensive training emphasis should convince every member that the NBUA strives to support their improvement as an umpire – and their eventual promotion as a result.

What qualifies me to be a Board Member?  First of all, I believe the NBUA is an exceptional organization and I am committed to be a strong advocate for our organization.  I maintain my collection of experiences and skills serve me well as a Board member and NBUA advocate.  As a helicopter Instructor Pilot in the U.S. Air Force, I was responsible for developing and teaching the ground-school and flight curriculum.  I learned the age-old truth that instructing is the best way to learn.  As an aerospace engineer, I was expected to develop systems in a systematic manner – driven by facts and data – while also leading with energy and passion.  As a manager, I have identified seven good rules to follow:  1) it is impossible to over-communicate, 2) in all ways, be completely honest and overt in your actions – no agendas, 3) from this day forward, always do the right thing, 4) make mistakes, 5) learn from your mistakes, 6) the most important job you’ll ever have is the job you have now, and 7) sweat the details – really understand the facts – before making a decision.  These rules are not rocket-science – but they have served me very well and I intend to hold myself to these rules if elected again to the NBUA Board of Directors.

I believe the NBUA is a great organization – filled with great people.  I am proud of our members and the quality of the product we place on the field.  As an NBUA official, I take great pride in knowing I walk onto the field with a partner who 1) loves the game, 2) loves to officiate, 3) wants to be there, and 4) wants to improve. 

If elected again to the Board of Directors, I pledge to continue as a strong advocate for the NBUA.  Thank you for your consideration.

Brian Sweet

2022 marks my 15th season with NBUA. In that time NBUA has taught me plenty about baseball and being an umpire. During these past 15 seasons I’ve helped and worked on the various committees (Recruiting & Retention, Evaluations, & Training) which make NBUA a great organization. As many of us know and have directly experienced, there is a shortage of officials in all sports, including baseball. When I first joined NBUA in 2007 we had nearly 200 officials in the group. Today that number has dropped to just under 140 and yet we still officiate the same number of games and in some cases turn customers away. Increasing our numbers and retaining our members is vital to supporting the youth baseball programs in Washington.

I’ve decided to run for the NBUA Board to work with the Board leadership and our membership to reverse this trend. Unfortunately, there is no simple or single solution that will fully fix this trend. I’ve have had many pre/post game discussions on how to improve our numbers and have heard many ideas worth further consideration. As a member of the board, I will be better able to bring these ideas to the entire leadership team for action.

Earl Smith

Dear Members,

Thank you for your dedication to the vocation of Umpiring. We all have felt the mounting pressures on sports officials and we all know it is becoming a tougher environment to work in. Don’t let it tarnish your love for the game……

It has been my pleasure to serve on the board for the last four years. As the board member who oversees our By Laws, and our Policies & Procedures, my duties have included navigating these waters and implementing this content when necessary. I have served on the Evaluations Committee, as well as chairing the Elections Committee. I have had influence in our bargaining with our customers, and improving our wages and working conditions.

My background as a 17 year Prevailing Wage Compliance officer / Field Representative for the Laborer’s International Union of North America has helped me in my officiating, and in my participation as a board member. Collective bargaining for 5000 members in King County alone, my participation in labor management negotiations has translated well to the same types of approaches in representing our members with our customers. We have a great association that has, and will continue to produce, the best umpires in our service area! We train better, we bargain for the best game fees we can secure, we show fiduciary responsibility with the member’s money, and we ensure that we have customers to assign our umpires to. You belong to the largest baseball umpire association in the state of Washington, and the most highly regarded one!

If it is the will of the members, I would like to continue to serve on this Board of Directors and continue to step out between the lines as an eleven year member of the Association

Greg Olmstead


I have decided to run for a second term on the BOD. I have previous experience on the football (PNFOA) BOD and am honored to have been given the opportunity to give back to both associations.  I feel I can bring a calm and thoughtful approach to issues that arise to help support the membership of the NBUA.

My 2 years have been spent as chairperson of the Evaluation committee.  In that role I have eliminated the task of scoring a partner after every game and replaced it with a one-time request at the end of the season.  This has yielded much more useable peer feedback in determining placement.  I have endeavored to make post-game feedback more constructive and eliminate any unnecessary in-game feedback. 

I understand the promotion process can cause great disappointment amongst members. I have tried to make this process more transparent by posting all methods online and by listening to our membership’s suggestions for improvement.

While the umpire shortage has created challenges for the committee it has also provided great opportunities for our member umpires to work at levels it used to take 5 or 6 years to be offered – often with our most experience members.

If re-elected I will continue to work hard in whatever role I take and will always look to strengthen the relationships within our membership and with our customers.

Hank Margeson

I am continually humbled to serve this fine association as a member of the Board of Directors, and it is in service of the association that I seek to be honored with an additional 2-year term. Over the past two years we’ve survived a zero-income year (2020) by managing our expenses and still putting more dollars in members’ pockets. We also solidified our relationships with Puget Sound Senior Baseball League and Seattle Elite Baseball, ensuring members are provided with opportunities to hone their umpiring skills while working the best available baseball in the area.

Over the next two years it is my goal to continue to push on the WOA to adapt their payment processes such that each contest is properly compensated. I intend to start advocate for a paradigm shift with how travel pay is handled with the goal of increasing game fees to reflect the professionalism needed to officiate each game.

Additionally, I will work with my fellow board members to address game fee increases considering inflationary pressures for our annually contracted summer ball customers. At the same time, I will work with the board to ensure the reserves we used to carry us during 2020 are replenished with minimal impact to members.

Finally, I want to make sure the association is not just on firm financial footing, but also recognize a changing demographic and adapt our processes and procedures to ensure benefit the whole association. While some processes are well grounded in our history, we should examine all to ensure the benefits are accruing properly.

I would be honored to continue to represent you as a member of the NBUA Board in 2023-2024.

Peyton Coffin

Fellow Umpires,

I’d like to thank you for electing me to the NBUA Board in 2020. After 17 years. it was about time for me to get out from behind the plate and contribute to you, our members.

Two years ago, I presented my past work and volunteer resume so there’s no need to reiterate, and for those newer umpires who didn’t have to wade through all that, I’ll trust you to rely on your current experiences of me.

Once elected, the Board members appoint committee chairmen, and I sought out the Member Services and Communication Committee. One reason was that our member communication needed an upgrade and another was that our entire training procedure was going to have to be changed to a virtual model. Somebody was going to have to organize all of that. We had a lot of help from our fellow tech-savvy members and a Training Committee that adapted expertly, and I believe we did a great job by working together.

You all also did a great job by adapting and excusing the few hiccups we experienced.

I have tried to open the communication within NBUA and have always tried to solve any issues brought to my attention by you, our NBUA members. That so many of you have felt comfortable to approach me with their issues, comments and suggestions has been one of the rewards of the job.

Our mid-season bulletins have been favorably received and I plan to continue with those, even in the off-season, as we prepare for 2023.

I trust these past two years have proven to you that your choice two years ago was the right one as I have tried to improve the communication and service to our members.

I ask for your vote to continue my efforts for you in 2023-4.

Thank you,


2021 NBUA Election Results

Fellow Members of NBUA,

We’ve had some days full of events and results. We had our annual golf tournament, the 2021 banquet announcing promotions and awards, the completion of the 2021 election and the appointment of committee chairmen and board positions.

Please welcome new board members Corky Trewin and Terry Granillo. Dale Wilson and Brian Rooney were, by our votes, returned to the board. Our thanks to all those that ran for office and did not get elected. Your offer of service is very much appreciated and, more than anything, demonstrates your commitment to our organization.

Our new board members round out the board with great experience and a diverse set of backgrounds.

Our 2021-2022 NBUA Board members and Committee Chairmen are:

Hank Margeson        President

Brian Rooney            Vice President and Recruiting & Retention Chairman

Dale Wilson              Secretary

Terry Granillo           Treasurer

Greg Olmstead          Umpire Evaluations

Henry VonJouanne  Training

Earl Smith                  Policies and Procedures

Corky Trewin            Recruiting and Retention Vice-Chairman

Peyton Coffin            Member Services and Communication (& Technology sub-committee)

We voted in Reams Goodloe to continue in the important position of Member Liaison. Reams is your go-to guy if you have an issue or suggestion and would rather seek his counsel and advice instead of contacting a board member directly. He has been invaluable in the past and will be so in the future. Thank you, Reams.

That said, every board member is always available to all members, even if the issue or suggestion might be in the remit of another.

We are all members of the NBUA and we are all partners on and off the field.

For your Board of Directors,

Peyton Coffin

206 280 8633

Member Services and Communication

2021 Candidate Questionnaire

NBUA 2021 Elections
Following are the questions asked by NBUA members and the answers submitted by the candidates.

Question 1: As we move into new training procedures, taking into account last year’s remote-mostly format, what percentage of training could be virtual?  Which aspects must be in person?

Mr. Granillo:
There are aspects of training that virtual meetings can actually enhance. Participation, play and positioning analysis, drilling down on rules to name a few. Future training might continue to employ some limited use of virtual modes even after we’re past pandemic protocols. Of course we’ll always need to get on the field and drill the fundamentals of the two-umpire system. For a full training regimen for new umpires, I’d estimate 15 hours field time, 15 hours rule study and classroom training, most if not all of which could be virtual.
Mr. Venters:
I do not have an exact percentage, however I feel about 50% of the meetings could be conducted online.  Much of the training can be conducted virtually; and these trainings should be repeated at least once with replays available via YouTube. Apprentice training may be an exception. The first meeting and WOA meeting should be in person.  The field training must be in person.  An in-person and virtual option can be available for most meetings. With some structure virtual training can have accountability for attendance and participation. I believe with what is already available online, we need to expand virtual training with a series of emailed plays to invoke thought and discussion.  We can look at what other associations have posted online to improve our training.
Mr. Wilson:
My recommendation to the training director for the 2022 training format would be to take the learning we had in 2021 and use this to layout the training format with a mix of Live and Virtual. We could also do a better job of training the trainers.
My suggestion would be that the Apprentice level would have a large % of in person meeting with the C and upper tiers apportionately less virtual for the classroom training. The virtual training worked out to be effective and saves time for all when it comes to travel, but part of getting together with our friends/umpires at training is important to fellowship.
Mr. Owsiak:
The format of the training should be driven by the desired outcomes and the effectiveness of the delivery format in achieving those outcomes. That said, virtual training during the week enables us to reach more members out of convenience. The online format is effective for learning concepts. Field training would continue to be in person as it is necessary to learn and practice the mechanics on a field. I am in favor of using more scrimmages to train umpires early in the season.

Question 2: What aspects of training should be emphasized more?
What will you do as a member of the board to enhance NBUA’s umpire training?

Mr. Granillo:
It really varies by level of official. Although I’d immediately qualify that if we continue to struggle with numbers and by necessity have to assign newer umpires to upper level games they might not normally work. Consistency of mechanics, communication, pregame are all essential foundational components of training we have to drill into all officials on day one, and then re-emphasize as they grow as officials. NBUA is a leader in the officiating community because of the consistent quality of officials we put on the field year-to-year. It’s not a given that we maintain that level of consistent quality, and we have to continue to refocus our training to do so. If we continue to face a reality of limited numbers, then it becomes more important to give our newer umpires more training, both in controlled training scenarios and live-game situations, on how to manage a game, players, team personnel, and situational awareness. You learn that best by doing it, but trial-by-fire can be pretty awful. To best serve our membership and our customers NBUA will need to adapt to low numbers through more and more carefully progressive assignments with top-tier umpires when higher level assignments come up. Leslie and Mark have long done a great job of this, but where in the past it’s been less frequent, it may unfortunately become more of a norm. I have long been committed to the training program at NBUA, participating every year as an on-field
training instructor. I consider my work with newer officials critical as well, as that immediate post-(or in-) game feedback is some of the most effective at teaching developing umpires.
Mr. Venters:
I believe we need to adjust part of our focus to spend more time on unique plays and case plays with visual aids.  These are the situations that get us in trouble.  We need to spend time on league rules and the NBUA philosophy for certain situations so we can present a unified approach to all games. We need to spend time on how to communicate with coaches. Every year everyone needs to spend time on fundamentals like partner communication, strike zone, and ball tracking.  TT, A, and B umpires need to be trained how to provide feedback and what NBUA wants emphasized. As a board member, I would try to form a new group under the education unit to find existing online resources to use.  I would work to have the leadership establish NBUA’s opinion instead of individual opinions.
Mr. Wilson:
High School areas of emphasis and how to enforce and discipline for violations. Best example would be the jewelry issues we ran into in the 2021 High school season.
For Summer Ball I would have the training team work on helping with game management when it comes to Coaches, Players, and fan conduct. I believe that if we are well prepared and trained for incidents we can handle them better and have fewer problems for our umpires.
Mr Owsiak:
Field training specific to your tier should be emphasized more. For example, C-tier umpires should have the option to attend Apprentice field training; however, I would use feedback from evaluations and members to offer targeted training to C-tier members to address areas of interest. In addition, I would look to standardize our training handouts and further define the NBUA to address any conflicting feedback that has been brought up in training or in evaluations.

Question 3: With cost of living, gas prices, etc, increasing, not to mention the deduction of “travel fee” from the 2nd game of a HS DH, how tough should NBUA get with game fee negotiation? Do you think we are fairly compensated?

Mr. Granillo:
If I’m 100% honest, I do. I think youth sport officiating is an avocation best pursued for the intrinsic rewards. I understand many officials rely more on the compensation. NBUA operates in partnership with our customers to ensure as many young people can participate in this sport as possible, with quality officials present to adjudicate. We should be honest and transparent about our costs and our challenges in attracting and retaining officials, and work together with our customers to arrive at our rates.
Mr. Venters:
All contract negotiations can be a delicate balancing act. In regards to the 2 nd game fee travel deduction, I would push the board to research the current contract to confirm who the agreement is with and the details of that contract to confirm it is being interpreted correctly.   I believe we have the power to negotiate this now. This is the first place I have been where a travel fee has been part of regular season.  Perhaps we can negotiate future contracts with verbiage of just a “game fee”. Like everyone, I want more money.  I came from San Jose with the highest cost of living in the country and similar game fees.  I also spent time in less expensive markets with higher game fees.  We are dealing with businesses which have their own expenses, I believe we have the power to negotiate appropriate increases over a period of time.
Mr. Wilson:
The larger opportunity for pay structure in my opinion is around High School Pay. I would be looking at removing the Travel Fee and getting into the game fee, this would eliminate the Double Header same field deduction issue as well as increasing total game fee to better align with the other High School sports.
Mr. Owsiak:
NBUA is a mission-driven organization. As such, we are called to promote the sport in our community. I prefer to think of compensation as a means to make certain our members can obtain the correct equipment, uniforms, and cover necessary costs to officiate. That said, NBUA’s ability to negotiate and request game fees is influenced by the officiating experience provided by its members. Our focus should continue to be on providing best-in-class officiating services, so our customers see the value in maintaining and increasing the game fees.

Question 4: How would you, as a board member, suggest handling fan and coach “over-competitiveness” and on-field criticisms of umpires during games? This borders on abuse at several schools and some leagues. It is a culture passed down by the coaches and even some AD’s and is inciteful for the players. What would you suggest to alleviate this?

Mr. Granillo:
Strong training. As I mentioned in Question 2, we’ve got more inexperienced officials in general on higher level games than we have had in recent memory. Often times the approach an official takes as situations are budding can change an ejection into a nothing. Umpire abuse is part of the culture of baseball. It’s changing; they’re working hard on it in High School and College ball every year. We alleviate it be consistently enforcing the progressive discipline protocols. We do that by training them into our umpires effectively. We support our umpires when they have to eject. We coach our umpires when an ejection might’ve been avoided.
Mr. Venters:
I believe the board needs to form guidance within the rules for misconduct and provide better training for umpire communications with coaches.  We need to educate some conflict resolution. NBUA also needs to work with the leagues to set expectations for coach, player, and fan conduct.  Unfortunately, we cannot mandate their policies or rules.  We need to provide better training and work with umpires who are in these situations.  Let’s be honest, if someone is acting completely out of control, maybe the umpire did something to light that fire or add fuel to the flame. This is not allows the case, but it usually a factor whether truthful or perceived. We need to work with these umpires to improve their umpire skills and communication skills.
Mr. Wilson:
There are a few areas that can help with this issue. The first would be to include into our training program more role-play to help members be better prepared. I believe if we are prepared, we can handle situations better. The second would be scheduling, if we insured that Apprentice and C tier are working more games with upper tiers, we would have the opportunity to mentor and potentially defuse issues before they become a larger situation and at the same tome show management examples.
In addition, if we have consistent problems with one school, team or league, our board can step in and, if necessary, levy sanctions.
Mr. Owsiak:
The rules and our procedures are very clear on addressing certain behaviors during the game. NBUA should continue to train members on the rules, use of preventative umpiring to keep coaches and players in the games, and, if necessary, ejections. For our non-school ball leagues, NBUA should continue to have a dialogue regarding the types of behaviors seen on the field; however, this discussion needs to be fact-based and in the context of promoting the sport.

Question 5: In what areas do you feel the Board can effect improvements? What should the board do in the near future to improve NBUA? What (specifically) is your plan to make those improvements?

Mr. Granillo:
I have no specific plan to improve NBUA.
Mr. Venters:
I think the board needs to do a better job of making sure member questions are resolved with simple answers, negotiating higher increases in fees, and improving training.  I will work to make sure all of the communication from NBUA is clear and to the point with direct links were appropriate. Improving training can immediately be addressed.   I do appreciate the work our volunteers put in. My plan is to review of how we train and as stated above, initiate new methods including video clips and field training exercises. Perhaps we need to spend some money on training aids, training our
trainers or paying our trainers. I think part of the field training needs to be with real players or teams and immediate feedback from trainers.  We can script scenarios into these trainings.  If an contracts are immediately up for renewal, I will work for higher fees.
Mr. Wilson:
The areas that I would be looking to improve is continuing to gather feedback from the members to make training the best possible. We should continue to add technology to the organization to better train, communicate, share information and recruit.
Mr. Owsiak:
Training and evaluations are two areas I would enact improvements. For training, I would consider targeted training sessions to address specific areas of interest from our members, both in theory and in practice. In doing so, I would look to give members a chance to work on their evaluation feedback. This may include mid-season training opportunities. For evaluations, I would clarify the rating system and reviewing guidelines as my experience is the understanding of the system and directions varies by the individual. I would look to more clearly define the desired competencies at each level (e.g., what is a 3 for an A-tier vs. C-tier). Lastly, I would clarify the use of the rating information to address any member frustration.

Question 6: What skills/knowledge/life experiences do you possess and could bring to the Board to make the Association function more smoothly and effectively?

Mr. Granillo:
I’ve been a CPA in corporate finance, accounting and auditing for thirty years. I’ve served as an instructor for NBUA for over ten years, and as Evaluations Chair for three years.
Mr. Venters:
I have worked with coaches and administrators all my professional life at the college and professional levels. Some who make millions of dollars a year with huge egos and some who think they do.  I have learned from many experiences how to interact with them and how to communicate during difficult interactions.  I have also learned how to train and communicate with inexperienced and new staff members.  I believe I can help the board rationalize decisions and communicate effectively.  I have an education degree and always worked in educational environments.  I know how to teach with common language and focus on the major items without getting lost in the details.
Mr. Wilson:
I am levelheaded and always look at all sides before sharing my thoughts and opinions.
I always look forward and not back with the goal to get better.
Mr. Owsiak:
The majority of my professional career has been working with leaders of large corporations to define their vision and a strategy to achieve that vision. From this, I have learned that the path forward is a combination of the culture that makes the organization great and a continuous improvement mindset I bring collaboration, inclusion, problem solving, and most of all, the ability to own and drive outcomes.

2021 Combined Candidate Statements

Corky Trewin

I became a member of the NBUA in 2013.

It is my pleasure to offer my candidacy to the NBUA membership for consideration to be elected to the NBUA Board of Directors for the 2021 election.

I started my umpiring journey in 1967 as a 13-year-old Redmond Babe Ruth baseball player. The year before as a Redmond Little League player for the Tigers I was primarily a catcher. It was there I developed a personal relationship with my plate umpires and especially Virgil Magruder. Magruder went on to be part of the first class of NBUA umpires when the association was formed by George Eshelman in 1969.

The Redmond Little League umpires were all volunteers and all integral parts of the community with less than 6,000 residents that year. I enjoyed and looked forward to meeting the men on the field – Dr. Fisher, Dr. Way, Mr. Lawson, Chief of Police Sollito, Mayor Bud Young and Magruder. My fondness for Magruder grew that season into a wonderful friendship. He challenged me to be the best catcher I could be, especially blocking the ball as umpires rarely wore shin guards. In between innings and pitches, He had a wonderful baseball story telling style and would ask me how I liked any of his new umpire “moves.” I loved it.

Towards the end of the season, Magruder announced to me “Trewin, I’m going to make you an umpire” and he did. He tutored me for the following five years as I rose through the Redmond Baseball community umpire ranks. It was a piece of baseball heaven and again I loved it.

It is that love for the game, the love for the umpiring aspect of the game, the personal relationship part of the game that Magruder and his Redmond Little League umpires gave me that is my motivation to be considered by you for election to the NBUA Board of Directors.

NBUA is wonderful and I would like to be a member of the NBUA Board of Directors to assist the membership to become even better.

Micheal Owsiak

As an Elite sports officiating organization, the NBUA and its members are recognized by peers and customers for providing best-in-class umpiring services to the community. It is imperative that we acknowledge and maintain the core values, processes, and culture that has gotten it here. Yet, at the same time, we must be persistent in our pursuit of excellence in service to our community.

My focus would be on collecting member feedback and incorporating it into our training, evaluation, and customer relationship activities. I would prioritize connecting evaluation feedback into targeted training designed to help members learn and grow at their desired pace. To our customers, I’d like to strengthen our relationships so that we can work on the issues that frustrate our members while officiating and collectively build a more positive game-time experience for all.

David Richardson

Fellow umpires

Umpiring has been my passion for 25+ years with various organizations. I joined the NBUA in 2017. Every year I’ve worked to improve my skills. The training never stops.

I retired from my dental practice, last August and always strived at making it successful for 38 years. I know what it takes to succeed and I will bring this effort to the NBUA board. I also have lots of time. Gotta love retirement…..

Randy Venters

I have been a part of many associations amongst the sports I officiate and the locations I have worked. I come from an education and sports background and have spent time in sales training systems. I am the ideal candidate to help lead the NBUA into the future.

I believe now is the time for the NBUA to adapt and move forward. With COVID we changed our training and meeting structure and many younger umpires received their chance to officiate games they may normally not have been assigned. I believe we need to continue to look at changes that can advance the NBUA as a whole.

The virtual training was great and I think we need to expand on the platform by offering the same meeting/topic a couple of times. There are many great resources online that already exist and we need the education committee to find and utilize these clips or find members willing to help. I believe the best way for individuals to grow is to see and experience new situations. I would like to see a regular(weekly maybe) email training series with video clips and rewards for participation.

Our field clinics are good, but they can be better. We need to get clinics with real players and real situations. There are many training tools and methods that we do not use. Let’s look at what other associations in different areas of the country are doing. We also need to have drills for reacting to players and coaches.

Partner feedback is great, but often the messages can be contradictory to what another official has said and often higher tier umpires focus on very specific details. We need to train all umpires on how to provide feedback and make sure all of the evaluators have the same standards and messaging. I also believe we work better when we have some familiarity with our partners. We should develop pods of officials and when possible assign pod members to work together. This would give umpires a truer sense where others are and give more knowledgeable feedback to help each other improve. Mentors need to work with their mentees and we need to develop more mentors.

This last season has definitely taught us we need to improve our recruiting and listen to our current members. Often voices feel like they are not heard or given enough support. We need to change this.

I thank you for your time and consideration.

Thank you

Terry Granillo

Fellow umpires,

Thank you for the work you do on the field, for the teams we serve, and for the sport we serve. It’s been a unique couple of years and as we move into the 2022 season and beyond, the stewardship, support, and leadership of your board of directors will be critical to the NBUA continuing to thrive and lead amongst umpire associations nationwide.

I would be honored to serve on your board of directors. I have been with the NBUA since 2007, and it’s the absolute truth that I’ve learned all I know about umpiring from the men and women in this association over that time. The greatest service we can give is to help others improve and grow as officials. I have served in that capacity as Evaluations Chair and on the Training Committee in the past. I am a CPA and have worked as a CFO for the past twenty years, and I bring those skills into board service as well.

This association, again, is a national leader; in training, in performance on the field, in umpire development, in customer service, and in consistency of service. As we return to a more normal way of doing business we’ll need strength, experience, and wisdom on the tiller. I don’t know what role the board will need me for over the next two years, but I am happy to serve where our association’s needs are greatest. Thank you for your consideration.


Dale Wilson

I am Dale Wilson and I started with NBUA in 2016. In 2020 I was elected to the NBUA board. My two years on the board has been very rewarding and exciting at the same time with COVID, no games in 2020, and adjusting to the new world of officiating in 2021.

As a member of the NBUA board I have been the Chair of Member Services & Communication in 2020 and then was voted to be on the Executive Committee as the Secretary. I am currently part of the Member Services & Communication and Evaluations Committee.

My goal when I started on the board was to focus on looking forward and how we can get better as a board and an organization. I believe that I have helped make steps in that direction with better communication to our members as the Member Service Chair. I will continue to bring new ideas and being the voice of our members to the board and executive committee.

If reelected, I will continue to work on what members share as potential issues, help to build the member base and to have the NBUA members best interest with changes that affects officials on and off the field.

Thank you to all the NBUA members for building a best in class umpiring organization. The desire for each of you to get better every game is what makes this a great organization.

Thank You

Brian Rooney

Brian Rooney

It has been an honor to have been on the NBUA board for the past four years. During that time, I have actively contributed my time and energy as the Chair of the Recruiting and Retention committee. In addition, I have also been a member of the Evaluation and Training staffs.

As the R&R Chair, we have streamlined our efforts and are actively pursuing leads that come our way. I have either emailed or spoken with everyone that has come to the recruiting committee’s attention and stayed in touch with them throughout the process. These future members of the NBUA are coming through a variety of sources whether it is Facebook, LinkedIn, WIAA, or our own website. However, the biggest recruiting tool we have is you, our members. I have greatly enjoyed being the conduit for those that you introduce to the NBUA.

It is an honor to wear the NBUA hat and represent the best Umpire’s Association in the state. Our principles of customer service, teamwork and excellence guide me as a member of the Board and an umpire on the field. I ask for your support and vote for the NBUA Board of Directors.

Member Liaison

Reams Goodloe

Reams Goodloe

I have provided services to members of NBUA as the Member Liaison since the position was created. I have assisted members in protecting their interests before the Board of Directors. I would welcome the opportunity to continue such service.

As Member Liaison, I have been able to bring many items to the attention of appropriate Board Members or to the Assignor, to express the members’ view of difficult situations or seemingly unfair positions, or to give voice to the frustration that various members have experienced with certain events, action, or disciplinary procedures. And, where asked by an affected member, such issues have been effectively raised on an anonymous basis.

As a member since 2004, I can bring the experience of working my way up through the association to understand situations that members encounter, and thus effectively advocate with Board Members, or before the Board as a whole, for explanation, adjustments, and changes as members believe appropriate given their situation.

Now that this position is a member elected position – a change which I supported before the Board – I am seeing members open up with more difficult issues. Hopefully, the Member Liaison role will enable me to enhance the visibility of problems and lead to increased scrutiny of issues which need the attention of the Board of Directors. I would appreciate the opportunity to continue to serve all members of NBUA in the Member Liaison role.

Mark Clough – Stepping Down

Lane Loland -Stepping Down

Ask the Candidates

The NBUA Election is set. This year, we have 8 Candidates who have offered to step up & serve our great organization.  They are competing for 5 open positions on the Board of Directors. Their Candidate Statements are contained in the previous post. We are soliciting questions for the candidates and ask that you send them to the election committee.

The election committee is composed of Vernon Dahl, Don Warfield, Mark Snyder, and Mark Clough. You should have received an e-mail concerning this topic and to submit your questions properly and anonymously, you should use that e-mail and Reply to All. If you have not received an e-mail, then please contact any one of the committee members.

2020 BOD Candidates

Christopher Castro

Greetings fellow members,

I am an NBUA rookie and based upon the number of games I have worked this year, I expect to be a rookie next year as well. I recognize that a great number of members are employed and do not have a large amount of free time to dedicate to the NBUA Board. However, as a retiree, I have an abundance of personal free time to offer in service to our association. I do not have any specific job aspirations; I will simply be of service where needed. My background is diverse enough that I can adapt to any role.


Career Naval Aviator, F/A-18 Pilot, TOPGUN Graduate, Commander / O-5, 22 years of service in the U.S. Navy’s Enlisted and Officer ranks. Lean Six Sigma Green Belt. Proven strategist, leader, and manager shaped through a large variety of job assignments and the intense pressure of three combat deployments to Iraq and Afghanistan.


M.A. Sports Administration and Leadership (Sport focused MBA), B.S. Aviation Management. FAA Certified Flight Instructor (CFI)/Instrument Instructor (CFII)/Ground School Instructor (IGI). 11 years of training officer/instructor experience, 8 years leading Operations, 6 years managing 350 + personnel, $20M budget execution experience, Certificate in Acquisition, and 3 years’ experience in African multi-national partnering, planning, negotiation, and training.

Little League Veteran: League President (twice) Lemoore, California and Naples, Italy. Manager, Umpire, District Umpire-in-Chief, and Mentor.

Umpired three divisions (L.L./Jr./Sr.) at the Little League Europe, Middle East, and Africa (EMEA) Regional Championships in Kutno, Poland and Novara, Italy. Umpired the American High Schools in Europe Championships at Ramstein, Germany.

Registered to attend the Minor League Baseball Umpire Training Academy in Jan. 2021.

I look forward to getting to know more of our membership and being of service to you.

Kind Regards,


Peyton Coffin

Fellow Umpires.

After 16 years, I’ve decided to ask you to elect me to serve you as a member of your Board of Directors. I have been a member of five officiating associations and that, coupled with my business experience, qualifies me to be one of your representatives. Some of my business experience: Owned/operated restaurants; Owned an advertising/public relations business; Account Director for an international public relations firm; Assistant Director of the Singapore National Parks Board; Project Director for the electrical subcontractor that installed systems in the Seahawks Exhibition Center; Built houses in Seattle, and; Umpire and Referee in three sports.

Many of you know me as the guy who likes to be light-hearted at the cars but knows and knows how to apply the rules on the field, or as the behind-the-scenes guy who listens to your concerns/complaints and brings them up to the appropriate board member and who calls you before our elections and encourages you to vote for others. I’m finally asking you to vote for me.

I’m the guy who printed and paid for that batch of recruitment cards. You know me as one of your trainers in the classroom, on the field and in the cages and as the guy who makes sure all new umpires have an indicator to be familiar with. You also know me as … the Pizza Guy!

The point is, whether you know me from many years past or more recent years, you know my record: I’ve volunteered in many ways to serve you and will continue to support my partners and our association.

We face a challenging time. No newly generated 2020 income and a purposeful administration and management of COVID-protocol games will demand action. Association-wide protocols will have to be implemented safely, authoritatively, yet respectfully. Assessment and evaluation procedures should be examined for their appropriateness considering the circumstances, especially as they affect newer umpires.

Newer umpires deserve special consideration because they’ve lost a year of experience to apply their training. Our newer umpires, especially, should vote their support for me as someone who has and will listen to their concerns. You know me — and you are our future.

Recruitment: Last year, I attended, at my expense, the NASO Summit/Spokane. I buttonholed the Managing Editor/Director Referee/NASO and proposed writing a recruiting/informational article in the largest US circulation magazine: AARP. Full support from NASO/Referee but it bogged down in AARP’s machinery. With national focus, I’m going behind the scenes again and putting him, the Executive Director, NFHS, the CEO, AARP, etc. all together via letters and contacts so they can get their butts in gear and encourage AARP’s members to stay healthy and active. Most 50+ year-olds played sports in school/coached/umpired their Little League kids. Now those kids are out of the house. Mom and dad should continue their involvement in sports. I know it’ll work!

These ideas and actions will not cease.

Vote for me to serve you on your Board … and I’ll deliver more than pizza!

Lane Loland

                Greetings to all NBUA members, and I would like to thank you for considering me for a Board of Directors position. Before anything else, I would like to acknowledge the presumptuous nature of my candidacy. I am fully aware that I have not “earned” any position of responsibility with my mere 100+ games of work as an umpire. Nonetheless, I would love the opportunity to increase my involvement with the NBUA and to help promote the interests of our organization.

            I came to umpiring after retiring from other endeavors. Retirement has given me time for greater involvement, and my work history (a short jaunt as a lawyer followed by a 32-year high school teaching career) helped me to develop and refine a few attributes that I feel will help me to be successful in our efforts to augment the strength of the NBUA. First, I believe I am very good in working with people. I listen well and my interactions are very non-judgmental. Further, my stoic nature allows me to deal with situations with an unemotional detachment. I have no ax to grind and no agenda to pursue. In addition, I show some proficiency at creative problem solving and I willingly take on difficult issues to find outcomes that are best for all involved. I look forward to using my skills and temperament as we figure out how to move forward in donning our black hats in a Covid world.

            When we do return to work, service is the entire focus of a position on the Board of Directors. I will continually advocate for increased game pay (and potentially ancillary compensation) for our hard-working members. I would also like for our organization to seek out enhanced recognition for our efforts as we strive to polish the image of umpires within baseball, and in the larger community. I smile whenever I see pictures of NBUA umpires in Referee magazine, and I would support an effort to promote our work with local print and electronic media. Finally, I would advocate for more frequent, informal evaluations for our C-Tier and Apprentice umpires. My proposal would be for voluntary observations and feedback by experienced members who might receive game credit (akin to a game worked) for watching and giving feedback to our newer members.

            The absence of a 2020 season has been horrendous for all of us in the middle of a nightmarish national trauma. As a possible silver-lining, however, I truly hope that this is an instance of “absence makes the heart grow fonder.” Ideally, the time to reflect has left all of us with a renewed appreciation of how much we enjoy being on the field and part of the game. I love umpiring and I take great pride in being member of the NBUA. While I am anxious to continue to work and grow as an umpire, simultaneously I would appreciate the opportunity to expand my role with the NBUA through a seat on the Board of Directors.

Thank you.

Hank Margeson-Incumbent

I am continually honored to serve this fine association as a member of the Board of Directors, and it is in service of the association that I seek to be honored with an additional 2-year term.  While the past couple of years were a roller coaster ride for some, not getting to umpire (so far) this year has proven that in times of crisis, leadership is paramount.  No one expected that we’d be completely shut out of High School and summer ball games when the year commenced.  And we were so ready to launch our new payment program, ensuring you’re compensated in a timelier manner than ever in the history of the NBUA.  But a virus delayed our plans.  The good news is we will not be deterred and provided we are once again able to safely step onto a baseball field in 2021, this change will be fully implemented.

The COVID-19 pandemic has strained the resources of the association, but not to the point of breaking.  We took significant action to reduce our expenditures when it became clear there would be no revenue from the schools.  We also worked closely with our summer customers so that if they were given the green light to launch their seasons there was agreement on finances.  Fortunately, the agreements we made prevented us from having to refund unearned revenues.  Approaching the situation with a clear head and having contingencies was crucial to preventing the association from falling into financial peril.  And most importantly, we can weather the storm and resume normal activities in 2021.

Two years ago I stated the my goals were to professionalize this association at all levels, creatively recruit and train outstanding new umpires, foster a sense of camaraderie to increase our membership, make it easier for members to access their increased earnings, identify and challenge the next generation of NBUA leadership, and elevate the stature of the NBUA in District 2 as well as within the WOA.  As I write this, I believe we’ve made significant progress in each of the areas, notwithstanding our aborted 2020 season.

So, here’s my pitch for the next couple years.  I will continue to focus on moving the association toward a more professional approach to recruiting, training, financing and evaluating.  The goal is to ensure the NBUA is held out as a model officials association within the state and region.  I will continue to urge members to get involved in the operation of the association with the goal of developing the next generation of Directors.  Finally, I pledge to make sound fiscal decisions with the goal of ensuring each member is fairly remunerated for the professional effort they display on (and off) the field.  I will accomplish this during conversations with our summer ball leagues/teams as well as continuing my outspoken advocacy for all officials within the WOA.

I will finish as I started, it is an honor to serve a fine group of umpires.  I would be honored to continue to represent you as a member of the NBUA Board in 2021-2022.

John Moore


I’m John Moore, and after 12 years with NBUA, I’m still waiting to meet some of you for the first time and looking forward to it. The previous eight years of LL umpiring helped get me started, and even though I’ve completed my first two years as an “A” tier, I continue to soak up more information and experience from the game, and all of you as well.

If you know me, then you’ll recall I’m a talker–let me use my voice to convey your words, ideas, and complaints (if any ^_^) to the attention of the board.  I cannot remember the ideas and possible changes I have grown as a (data) analyst at my current job for the past 17 years where I have created many types of reports involving health insurance.  While umpiring LL, I served as the UIC and President for two years, and was involved with the creation of North Lake LL.  We had to write Williamsport for permission to retire our two (declining) smaller leagues into one, and it took a team of us to make it happen.

My wife and our son have supported me since I umpired my first game back in 1997, when I also coached the “Velociraptors” (we just loved that name–the players came up with it).  My son played ball through LL and it was quite the ordeal when I had to punch him out on a called third strike for “our” first plate appearance.  We joined a Bothell PONY team when he reached Junior High, however, due to a back injury he was unable to play.  I had already agreed to coach the team, and even though he sat out the majority of the season, I still coached the team that season.  The parents and players all appreciated my dedication to stay on, even though my son would not be playing.  As with those players, I enjoy my involvement for the players and the enjoyment of baseball. My wife still comes out to watch me umpire after these dozen years, and says she will continue to come out.  I think they (and my other family members) enjoy the game a little more since I started umpiring.  It lifts me up.

If you elect me, I’ll do all I can to help the board and our association to maintain our level of quality umpiring and the respect of our customers and baseball in our region.   

Thank you.

Greg Olmstead


I have decided to run for the NBUA board in order to give back to the organization.  I’ve been a member over 10 years working over 100 games/ year and serving as a mentor every season.  I played at a fairly high level growing up and continued until age 38, then moving over to coaching both baseball and football.  After my son graduated HS, I saw the need for officials and in 2010 became both a baseball and football official and have worked state playoff games in both sports.  I’ve seen our sport from the perspective of a player, coach, parent, fan and official.

I recently served on the board of directors for the football associate, PNFOA.  Besides taking on the most time-consuming tasks I also brought many ideas to the board for ways to improve the membership.  I decided not to run for re-election last year, in order to give back to the NBUA if elected.

I am an electrical engineer remaining technical throughout my career.  I am the main inventor listed on 3 US patents.  I consider myself an idea person bringing logical, well considered ideas to problems that can sometimes bring out passionate emotions responses in others.  I feel I can bring energy to a discussion and not take it personally if my ideas are not adopted.

There are many tasks a board has to perform – my overriding drive is to retain officials that we have invested our training in.  I will always work to eliminate the frustrations we see at every level of the game and keep positive experiences throughout the season.

Greg Olmstead

Earl Smith-Incumbent

Well, let me say that this has been the easiest year on the board out of the two I have served! But in all seriousness, I hope this finds you and your families healthy. I would like to continue with my involvement with our board for a variety of reasons. I do not think that a board member in their freshman term can be as effective as a tenured member. Trying to involve myself and not make monumental mistakes sums up the first two years. It is obvious now more than ever that we lost a season that would have resulted in too many clients and far too few umpires. As a member of the evaluation staff, I think it is critical to impart evaluation feedback in a manner that helps our membership mature without alienating them in the process. I am maturing as an umpire every year, and hopefully as an evaluations staff member as well. I feel like my strongest contributions to the membership were in the contract and negotiation arenas, and my weakest were in the election process last year. As I stated, I am still maturing, but not afraid to take that step forward when I think I can bring value to a board committee. I have a broader understanding of the Board as a whole, and I have to say a deeper appreciation for this group. They gain clients, schedule and keep us organized, they foster checks and balances, show fiduciary responsibility for and with the association’s money, they recruit and retain umpires, and they keep us in the 21st century from payment methods to member feedback tools. I had such a small understanding of what went on behind the scenes to keep our association the best in the Northwest. The volunteers on this board work hard to make that happen. I hope to serve another two years with the association as a board member and I think I can still bring a value-added attitude to the Association!

Thank you for your consideration. 

Earl Smith 

Henry VonJouanne-Incumbent

I am honored to be considered again for an NBUA Board of Director position.  I have completed one term – two years – as a board member and I am eager to continue serving for another term.  I can genuinely argue that I feel like I want to “finish the job”.  I served as the Training director the past two years; both years, our training programs were profoundly impacted by unforeseen events.  In 2019, the heavy snow forced cancellation of several training events, and of course the COVID19 pandemic abruptly halted our training this year.  Looking forward, if selected to continue as the Training director, I am eager to plan and execute high-quality training programs to completion.

My goal as a Board Member is simple:  to fully and enthusiastically support the NBUA mission.  That is, “We deliver the highest quality service to our customers by umpiring all games to the best of our ability and with fairness to all participants via state of the art training and evaluation and demonstrated examples of inclusion.”  The NBUA has – in my opinion – always separated itself with a strong training program – so I believe our excellence and “highest quality” starts with training.  And I believe the training starts with emphasis on the basics:  superior rules knowledge and superior mechanics knowledge.  Of course, this begins with the formal pre-season classroom, field training, and cage training.  The training extends to the mentorship program and the important and valuable pre-game and post-game discussions.  A strong and comprehensive training emphasis should convince every member that the NBUA strives to support their improvement as an umpire – and their eventual promotion as a result.

What qualifies me to be a Board Member?  First off, I believe the NBUA is an exceptional organization and I am committed to be a strong advocate for our organization.  I maintain my collection of experiences and skills serve me well as a Board member and NBUA advocate.  As a helicopter Instructor Pilot in the U.S. Air Force, I was responsible for developing and teaching the ground-school and flight curriculum.  I learned the age-old truth that instructing is the best way to learn.  As an aerospace engineer, I was expected to develop systems in a systematic manner – driven by facts and data – while also leading with energy and passion.  As a manager, I have penned seven good rules to follow:  1) it is impossible to over-communicate, 2) in all ways, be completely honest and overt in your actions – no agendas, 3) from this day forward, always do the right thing, 4) make mistakes, 5) learn from your mistakes, 6) the most important job you’ll ever have is the job you have now, and 7) sweat the details – really understand the facts – before making a decision.  These rules are not rocket-science – but they have served me very well and I intend to hold myself to these rules if elected to the NBUA Board of Directors.

I believe the NBUA is a great organization – filled with great people.  I am proud of our members and the quality of the product we place on the field.  As an NBUA official, I am proud to know that I walk onto the field with a partner who loves the game, loves to officiate, wants to be there, and wants to improve. 

If elected again to the Board of Directors, I pledge to continue as a strong advocate for the NBUA. 

Thank you for your consideration.

2018 Elections results

The polls closed at 6pm on Monday night and the election results are as follows:

89 of 149 eligible members voted (60%) which is up 2% from last year
Allen Christie 84 votes (94%)
Henry VonJouanne 82 votes (92%)
Hank Margeson 81 votes (91%)
Ron Beal 78 votes (88%)
Earl Smith 78 votes (88%)
Gary Coy 35 votes (39%)

The 2018-19 Executive Committee is:
Hank Margeson – President
Mark Snyder – Vice President
Allen Christie – Secretary
Mark Clough – Treasurer

Committee Chairs are:
Finance – Mark Clough
Bylaws/Policies and Procedures – Mark Snyder
Member Services and Communications – Allen Christie
Recruiting and Retention – Brian Rooney
Training – Henry VonJouanne
Evaluations – Mark Clough