GSSL Board of Directors

 

Allan Bakalian

Allan is an environmental and land use/real estate attorney and avid soccer player and former youth soccer coach.  After learning to kick and run on his high school team in northern New Jersey in the 1970s, Allan started really playing soccer when he moved to Seattle after graduating law school in the 1980s.  While working for EPA, he began playing co-rec soccer on dirt fields with the EPA’s Toxic Avengers.  He later joined the GSSL after turning 40 and has played on and managed teams in the Lake Washington summer soccer league at 60 acres when the fields were lush.  He currently plays on two GSSL Mercer Island teams and also subs on an O40 team when his knees and back are willing.  Allan previously worked as senior counsel for Univar Corp. and has been in private practice since 2000.  He currently works in Kirkland and is also an active skier and squash player.  Allan is also on the board of the Seattle Squash Racquets Association and provides over 50 hours a year of pro bono legal assistance to Eastside residents through the Washington State Bar Association.  He someday hopes to become a ref.

 

 

Eric Breecher

Soccer has been my passion for 40 years.  This will be my 2nd foray serving as a GSSL Board Member.  It is my natural progression after playing 20 years in the GSSL, Officiating for 10+ years, Starting and Managing GSSL teams, and Coaching Boys Rec soccer teams (most recently BU15 Eastlake Warriors).  I work for Ameriprise Financial and bring my 2 decades of experience as a Financial Adviser to the GSSL.

Home is in Sammamish with my lovely wife (Michelle), my two teenage boys (Benjamin and Simon) and the enjoyment of our 3 dogs.  Beyond soccer, life is a myriad of outdoor activities including snow skiing, pickle-ball, golf (hole-in-one Plateau Club #16; 131 yds over water), Saturday 8am pick-up EHS pickup games, watching Simon play STARZ lacrosse and exploring wherever the RV takes us.  I look forward to serving the members of the GSSL with a focus on the quality and consistency of the officiating.

 

Robin Callan

Robin has been playing soccer for more than 55 years; the last 30 in the GSSL.  He is a big fan of adult soccer and the GSSL for providing a quality soccer experience for players of all ages and abilities, including his current team of "seasoned citizens" in the Over-60 league.

He's spent 45 years in business; the first 24 as a CPA and for the past 21, he's managed a small medical device technology company. He looks forward to contributing and helping the GSSL continue to offer the experience for all to learn and participate, at all ability levels and ages, in organized soccer.

 

 

Ryan Caruso, Competition Committee Vice President

Ryan has been an avid soccer fan his whole life. Since sitting himself down to watch Arsenal early in the morning as a young kid, the game has always captured his attention. He's attended soccer matches on four continents, including two World Cups, and can almost always be found in the stands for Sounders home games (and even some away games).  His love of the game has led to over 10 years as a player and manager in GSSL (New Arsenal, Sully's Arsenal, Sin Fire Arsenal, and Monday Sin Fire Arsenal).

Professionally, Ryan is a product strategy/management consultant in the tech industry. He hopes to combine his passion for the game and professional skills to positively impact GSSL through fostering the mutually beneficial connection between players, referees, and the league and ensuring that those passionate about the game have a place to participate in it through GSSL.

 

 

 

Jimmy Dunn

     Originally from Princeton, New Jersey, I migrated westward (along with my parents) with intermediate stops in Overland Park, Kansas and Roy, Utah.  In 1968 I finally made it to the "left" coast and Pacific Lutheran University.  After a prep career of many sports (baseball, wrestling, football, track and field, and soccer) I fell in love with the beautiful game.  I played soccer for the University of Puget Sound Loggers, Pacific Lutheran University Lutes and Tacoma Heidleburg.  These three teams were the springboard for 40 years of playing (Seattle Reign, the Danes, KSA) and coaching (SPU, PLU, Tahoma HS, Kentwood HS, KYSA, SCFC, GRFC, PacNW).

     I have my USSF 'A' license; NSCAA DOC certification and the USYSA 'Y' license.  During summers, I have coached at the John Best Soccer Camp, as well as over 25 years with Uncle Nubby at the Northwest Soccer Camp.  After 34 years, I've retired from the teaching profession (K-12: US History, PNW History, World Geography, Elementary Physical Education, 7th & 8th grade Sciences plus Health and Fitness).

     I now enjoy international bicycle trips, downhill and x-country skiing, camping with my T@G trailer, golfing and putting my Silver Sneaker membership to good use.  I do volunteer work for NW Harvest and the Kent Holiday Bank.

    A special shout out to Cliff McCrath, Bobby Howe and Frosty Westering for providing the inspiration, vision and leadership for this aforementioned journey.  As I move forward in this new adventure it is with a profound sense of obligation and passion for the beautiful game that I am serving you on the GSSL Board.

 

 

 

Tim Farley, Communications and Team Development Vice President

Tim rediscovered his love for soccer as a college intramural player and has been hooked for the better part of two decades now. His team, FC Spare Tire (now Streamline FC), has played in Open Sunday divisions since 2002. Tim was awarded GSSL’s “Manager of the Year”
honor in 2010.

He’s a Sounders FC season ticket holder since the inaugural year and loves to kick a rubber soccer ball in the kitchen with his 5-year-old son.

 

  

 

David W. Findlay CPA, CMC, Vice President of Finance

David is the president of a financial management and consulting firm, serving municipal utility clients located in 11 western states and Canada.  Beginning in 1970, the first 10 years of his professional career he was employed by an international public accounting and management consulting firm. Then he was an SVP and CFO for a large international consulting engineering firm for eight years.  Then he formed FCS GROUP where it recently celebrated its 25th year in business. He has also served on a number of corporate boards of directors.

He pretty much enjoyed playing many sports including American football, high level baseball, boxing, gymnastics, several racket sports, skiing and volleyball. At the age of 26, he was introduced to soccer like many dads, by way of assisting others coach his two daughters' soccer teams. At age 34, he joined a GSSL over-30 team.  Since that time, he played and/or managed/sponsored very successful O-30 A-level soccer teams until 2002. His teams went by the name of FCS Group.  He also played for years in the O-40 league with the Kings and on a couple of O-50 teams.  And he is a previous GSSL Board member during a remarkable period of league growth and quality of play. 

Very good financial results were achieved during his time on the Board, which includes his direct effort in acquiring the property within which the GSSL office has been located since.  The GSSL's financial plan led to early repayment of the mortgage, and perhaps more important, control over what was then a major portion of our annual budget. Today he watches more soccer matches, whether they be MLS or international, than any other sport.  However, he has not been active in any team sports since 2002. Now, he is semi-retired, meaning: he remains the president of his company, but he is winding down through a transition process.  His interest in rejoining the GSSL Board at this time is that he is experienced and brings some added value to the Board in terms of financial and operations management policy-making for the league.

 

Marc Goyette, Executive Vice President

Marc has been a GSSL player and manager since 2005.  His introduction to soccer was as an intramural goalie at San Diego State University in 1974.

He now lives on Mercer Island and loves playing pickup soccer on the weekends and league soccer during the week on two teams and subbing for a couple others.  He feels very lucky to have found such a wonderful sporting community with so many great people who love to stay in shape and compete for a little wooden plaque every once in a while.

 

 

 

 

Gabriel Hanzeli, President

Gabe has a passion for the world’s game of futbol.  He has played almost 50 years in the Seattle area and coached almost 40 years.  He manages KSA, which is one of the longest-standing teams in the GSSL.

On the professional side, he is a retired business leader and continues to volunteer in community activities.  His goal on the board is to build on sportsmanship and the sharing of cultures from all around the world.

 

 

 

Tom Mailhot, Operations Committee Vice President

Tom started playing soccer in 1976 when some guys from his company decided to form the Little Feet team and play in the lower divisions of what in those days was the combined WSSA/GSSL.

They had maybe three guys who had played before, and the rest were enthusiastic if not talented. In 1980, he also started playing for an over-30 team coached by De-En Lang. They had practice every Saturday morning, and he credits Mr. Lang for helping him develop whatever skills he has today.

As his teams got older, the team (Ravenna Volvo, Goombah's Tavern, Lang Financial, and finally FC Lang) moved up to the over-40, then the over-50 and today is still playing in the Over-55 and over-60 divisions (and still practicing every Saturday morning). Some of the guys have played together for over 30 years. For many of those years he served as manager of the team. He's retired and now enjoys traveling around the world for masters tournaments. The GSSL has made soccer a lifetime sport, and he wants to help keep that going.

 

Esco Strong

Esco grew up playing soccer locally in Federal Way, winning several state championships as a youth player.  He has played in all divisions of GSSL both at the open and over-30 levels, and is currently on the management team for Emerald City Supporters (ECS) FC where he is in charge of player training and placement.  He is a USSF 'E' licensed coach and coaches part-time for his daughter's select club, FME Fusion.

Esco is also president of Barra Fuerza Verde, and ECS subgroup that is devoted to supporting the Seattle Sounders through various Latin American cultures and supporting styles.  Each year BFV hosts a youth soccer tournament called 'La Copita' that is free to local teams and focuses on groups that service underprivileged youth that would otherwise have difficulty accessing the beautiful game.  You can find Esco on most Sounders matchdays waving a flag or singing his heart out in the Brougham End sections of lower 121 and 122.

Professionally, Esco has spent nearly his entire career in the field of advertising technology (aka 'ad tech'), where he has published a number of studies and white papers while working in the fields of analytics, marketplace design, yield management, and product management.  He holds a BS in Software Engineering for Seattle University.

 

 

Nelson Taggart, Referee Committee Vice President

Nelson loves soccer and still plays with his 0-40 team in the GSSL.  He's passionate about all things soccer, the buildup, the managers, the players, the reffing and simply wants to give back what the GSSL has offered to him over the past 20 years.

 

 

 

 

Linda Yasutake

Linda Yasutake has been involved in soccer for many years now.  Linda’s love of the game began as a small child, but started playing seriously as an adult. She has played indoor soccer, futsal, and outdoor soccer for the last 17 years or so, yet is always marveling how one never stops learning the game. Linda has played and continues to play on a Men’s Over 40 team in GSSL for the last 11 years and is an avid supporter of the Sounders and the USWNT. She organizes a futsal game on Bainbridge Island twice a week and also helps organize other pick-up game opportunities on the Island. In addition, Linda has been involved in coaching and nurturing youth players on several recreational and select teams over the years in Poulsbo and Bainbridge Island, culminating with the local high school boys’ and girls’ soccer teams over the last two years. Linda was involved as an assistant GM at a local indoor soccer facility. While there, she managed several teams – men’s, women’s (including starting a beginner level league for women) and kids team.

Linda’s mission has been to bring her passion of soccer to other’s lives as well as teaching life through soccer.


 

Chris T. Zervas, Judicial Vice President

Chris has been involved in soccer for most of his life, including at Western Washington University, the University of Washington, and various teams in the local area since the '70s. Currently he's a player/co-manager of the FTI O-40 team and has been a member of GSSL Board since the mid '90s.

His current position within the board is as Judiciary VP.

 

 

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