Youth Referee Academy

SALEM, Ore. — Starting this Spring, CFC will be introducing a new “Youth Referee Academy” which will create a player pathway for the officiating side of soccer. This will allow players to become certified referees by the USSF (United States Soccer Federation) while gaining workplace skills, leadership skills, and communication skills via officiating.

Jose Maciel instructing 18 young officials at the first Referee Youth Academy program.

The idea for a referee academy started with CFC alumni, Jose Maciel. Jose was a scholarship player at the club who started refereeing at age 12 for extra money. He worked as a referee through his CFC career (age 12 to 18) and moved on to ref during his time at Oregon State University. Jose has officiated at the competitive, collegiate, PAC12, semi pro-levels. Jose is very active in the soccer community as he serves as the Salem Soccer Referee Association Commissioner (High School), Oregon Adult Officiating Association Soccer Committee Chair, and USSF Soccer Assignor for the Timbers/Thorns League-Salem.

“Officiating has created a huge opportunity for me on the personal side and professional side of my life,” says Jose. “Many don’t realize the major benefits that officiating can bring to oneself. I am here to help our youths in our community to explore the opportunity provided to them – to provide a safe learning environment for them to grow leadership skills and gain real life work experience. I am excited for the opportunity that CFC has created for me and I love the motivation seen with this academy. I really do feel that we are making something super special in our community for our youths that will have positive impacts for our community.”

The goal of this referee academy is to build a foundation for youth officials to gain skills and confidence within the workplace while building leadership and communication skills via officiating. We want to create a pathway in officiating that is filled with support and a safe learning environment.

18 youth attended the first Referee Youth Academy training on March 20th at Salem Indoor.

Current players who are interested in becoming a referee can get their certification this April. The CFC Youth Referee Academy will be hosting a USSF Referee Certification Course on April 3rd at Salem Indoor. This class will be run by a USSF instructor and will also have a special guest in Sandra Serafini who is the Professional Referee Organization (PRO) Director of Strategic Initiatives and Innovation. We are extremely excited to have Sandra as an active consultant and mentor for our Youth Academy.

This course will be taking place on April 3rd from 9am-6pm at Salem Indoor. The course does require some pre-course work and has a cost of $95. If you are in need of assistance covering the upfront cost please reach out to Jose Maciel (Director of CFC Youth Referee Academy) for a special code. These codes are limited in quantity.

Following the USSF course there will be a “League Rules Clinic” happening April 10th from 10am-12pm at CFC. This course will go over the league rules for all recreational matches played. The officials will also get a practical look at how to prepare for a match. All aspects of a match will be discussed and shown.

Happening bi-weekly at CFC there will be continuing education training for the officials. These will be on Friday nights from 6-7:30pm. These will begin April 23rd and run May 7th, 21st, followed by an end of season celebration on June 11th.

If you are interested in learning more about the CFC Youth Referee Academy as a player or community member, please contact the Director of CFC Youth Referee Academy, Jose Maciel, at

If you are currently not a CFC member but are interested in becoming a referee, please contact the Director of CFC Youth Referee Academy, Jose Maciel, at

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