Women’s International Day webinar for International Female Referees
SANTO DOMINGO, Dominican Republic, March 8, 2023.- In commemoration of
Women’s International Day the NORCECA Referee Commission held a webinar
on Tuesday for international female referees with the theme of “Sharing
Our Stories” to provide helpful information to support their growth and
Julie Voeck of the United States, member of the NORCECA Referee
Commission, was in charge of moderating an open conversation in which
NORCECA female referees had the opportunity to speak about their
personal experiences refereeing at an international level.
Guy Bradbury, president of the NORCECA Referee Commission highlighted
that the Referee Commission has been working for the equality within our
sport and having a better understanding of female referees.
Ariel Sainz, NORCECA First Vice President also took part of the session,
alongside other members of the NORCECA Referee Commission.
Beach Volleyball referees Claudia Guerrerro of Honduras and Suzanne
Lowry of the United States, and Volleyball referees Cinthya Hernández of
Costa Rica and Mary Carmen Durán of Mexico shared their stories of how
they decided to become referees and the different challenges they have
faced along their path.
One of the discussions during the webinar was how some of them shifted
from being an athlete to refereeing, the opportunity they have been
provided of meeting fellow referees which have contributed to their
career and a better understanding of the rules of the game.
An important conversation came to the attention of the participants, was
that in many events they are the only female referee officiating during
an event, which has been challenging as on occasions they haven’t felt
the same camaraderie when having the companion of another female
The speakers agreed the importance of whistling as many national events
as possible, providing them with a better preparation to approach
difficult situations, dealing with coaches and players who are
constantly questioning their decisions, which in the end helps them to
improve with every match and for officiating at an international level.
Some of the challenging situations they have faced are balancing their
personal careers and overcoming doubting themselves, but NORCECA has
provided the necessary support.
The webinar concluded with the message to continue working hard and
setting career goals, to become trustworthy referees and also taking on
a teaching role for developing more female referees.