With the application deadline for entry into the Ontario Player Development League (OPDL) now passed, Ontario Soccer has announced the formation of the independent OPDL Assessment and Selection Committee for the 2018-2019 OPDL Cycle.
The committee has already begun to assess applications. Assessment is expected to be completed in July 2017.
The Committee consists of five members, two of whom are appointments from Ontario Soccer.
The three non-Ontario Soccer members, Sylvie Béliveau, Brian Burden (Committee Chair) and Mark Heazle, between them extensive experience in both business and international sport.
Gary Miller, Ontario Soccer’s Technical Director, and Leonard Golberg, Director of Finance and Administration will represent Ontario Soccer.
The Calgary-based Burden is an experienced senior executive, chief financial officer and corporate director with a number of large, successful Canadian and multinational organizations. He is a member of Canada Soccer’s Board of Directors.
Heazle, a native of Australia, brings senior executive experience from the Canadian not-for-profit sector. He has held the position of Director of Finance and IT at the Canadian Olympic Committee, where he had financial oversight responsibilities for all Olympic national sport organisations, and is the current Director of Finance and Administration at UNICEF Canada.
Béliveau, Manager of Long-Term Player Development (LTPD) for Canada Soccer is a former coach of the Canadian Women’s National Team. A Montreal resident, she brings a wealth of soccer knowledge to this position, not only as a coach, a player but also as a highly-regarded FIFA Instructor and administrator.
The selection Committee includes a combination of technical oversight skills and awareness of Club capabilities, as well as business and financial expertise.
Ontario Soccer has this independent, arms-length Committee together to continue with an unbiased, thorough and fair review process as implemented in the first cycle.
In the interests of privacy, all Committee representatives have signed a non-disclosure agreement, ensuring that the details of this process and the applications therein are not made public in any manner.
On-site visits to shortlisted applicants will begin in soon and continue over the next several weeks.
The OPDL Assessment and Selection Committee makes final recommendation for final approval to the Ontario Soccer Board, through the Executive Director. Announcement of the successful candidates is scheduled for August 2017.
Successful candidates will join the OPDL in 2018 at the U13 age group.