John has been involved in youth soccer as a coach, administrator, director and parent for 30 years. Prior to accepting the position of Vermont Soccer Association Director of Coaching, John was employed by US Youth Soccer as ODP Technical Director, and prior to that, was employed by the USYS Member State Association, Minnesota Youth Soccer Association (MYSA), where he served for more than twenty years working his way up through the organization from college intern to Associate Director of Coaching and ultimately serving as Director of Coaching and Player Development. In addition to coaching education, player development and ODP, one of Curtis’ favorite roles with MYSA was community outreach, especially his visits to elementary schools in diverse, and often underserved, areas to work directly with kids and their physical education teachers.
For the past 16 years, John has been involved with USYS’s ODP Midwest Region as a Staff Coach and U13/14 Head Coach. As a Regional ODP Coach, John had the honor of coaching youth who have since gone on to become national team or professional MLS players, including: Michael Bradley, Darlington Nagbe, Ray Gaddis, Ethan Finlay, the late Kirk Urso, Caleb Stanko and many others. In 2019 John was named the Girls’ Head Coach for the USYS ODP West Region.
“I am honored and excited to join Vermont Soccer Association as their Director of Coaching and to work within the ODP Program,” Curtis said. “ODP is something I have been passionate about at both the state and regional levels because it provides valuable development opportunities for players from all backgrounds and gives them access to resources needed to reach the highest level in the sport of soccer. I am grateful for this opportunity to serve our ODP youth nationally and I look forward to continued collaboration with many of the top coaching talents in youth soccer. Changes are coming to the USYS ODP program and I look forward to bringing change to Vermont.”
“John understands the landscape on the boys’ and girls’ side of soccer in this country,” says Meg Munson, VSA Executive Director. “John will bring tons of experience and knowledge to Vermont Soccer Coaching Education and our Olympic Development Program (ODP). I am extremely excited to have him on our team and I look forward to working with him to help grow the Vermont ODP and Coach Education.”
John brings a wealth of professional relationships, experience and knowledge with him to this new role. From 1997 through 2010, he served as the Assistant Men’s Soccer Coach at St. Olaf and Macalester Colleges, both Division III colleges in the MIAC Conference, working alongside esteemed head coaches, John Leaney and Ian Barker. Since 2016, Curtis has served as part of the US Department of State, Sports Diplomacy and Outreach making several goodwill trips to Haiti with United Soccer Coaches and The Sanneh Foundation to train coaches and players. From 2017 to 2019, he held the elected position of Technical Chair for the Midwest Region’s State Directors of Coaching. Curtis holds his USSF “A” license, National Youth License, Talent Scout License, Grassroots Instructors License and his United Soccer Coaches Premier Diploma. Curtis serves on the national staff for U.S. Soccer, US Youth Soccer and the United Soccer Coaches instructing advanced coaching license courses for coaches across the country. Additionally, Curtis is an active U.S. Soccer Scout working to identify both girls and boys for youth national teams.
Family is a top priority for Curtis. He and his wife, Jeanne, have two elementary aged children, Evan and Molly. According to Curtis, “We are all excited for this next chapter. My family knows how much love I have for the game, for ODP and coaching education and the time that requires. I wouldn’t be able to do this without their unwavering support.” When he is not traveling, Curtis enjoys spending time with his family relaxing on the lake, playing soccer or hockey, roller blading, biking, and skiing. “We definitely make the most of our time together.”
Please join VSA in welcoming John Curtis!