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United Soccer League Announces the Winners of the USL Changemakers Awards

By Staff, 12/21/21, 1:45PM EST


Five individuals were recognized at the USL Winter Summit for their impact on the soccer industry

From left to right: Stand-in for Karen Gonzalez, Desiree Kim, Chanel Wiese, Celina Lyva, Emma Boyle

TAMPA, Fla.- The United Soccer League (USL) today announced the winners of the 2021 USL Changemakers Awards presented by Women In Soccer (WIS). The USL Changemakers Awards recognize women within the USL ecosystem who are making positive changes both on and off the pitch and in their front offices.

The USL and WIS community voted nearly 500 times for trailblazers who are impacting the soccer industry in a progressive and inclusive way. The following is a list of award categories and the winners of each respective Changemakers Award. 

COMMUNITY CHAMPION - You are a leader in fan engagement and community experience. You’re a pro at filling stadiums and making people in your community feel thoughtfully considered.

Winner: Karen Gonzalez, Oakland Roots SC’s Director of Community Engagement and Experience

RISING STAR - You are on your way up! Nothing is stopping you from reaching the next level in your work game. You are making a positive impact right from the start.

Winner: Emma Boyle, San Antonio FC’s Associate Manager of Event Services

CAPTAIN AWARD - You are producing the best leadership in the sports industry. People think of you and say, “they are consistently making us all better.” (Executive/Owner of the year)

Winner: Desiree Kim, New Mexico United’s Chief Administrative Officer

VISIONARY AWARD - You are a creative leader and have produced unrivaled content experiences through digital media, merch design, or on the mic.

Winner: Celina Lyva, San Antonio FC Marketing Coordinator

INNOVATOR AWARD - You broke old boundaries and brought a fresh perspective to what soccer culture can look like amidst a pandemic. (A one-time award for someone who mastered pivoting during the wildly unprecedented year.)

Winner: Chanel Wiese, New Mexico United’s Executive Director of the Somos Unidos Foundation 

Congratulations to all of our USL Changemakers! 

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