August Cambria (right) with LISFL president and ENYSSA 2nd vice president Gus Xikis.
QUEENS, N.Y. — August Cambria might have had a late start in soccer, but that didn’t stop him from making an impact on the game, especially in Yonkers, N.Y.
He started out with the Yonkers Department of Parks, Recreation and Conservation and eventually discovered youth soccer and was a big factor in starting Yonkers United, the city’s youth travel soccer program before helping adult teams by getting five turf fields built.
Cambria is registrar for the Liga de Yonkers and is a member of the Eastern District Soccer League board.
For his efforts through the years, Cambria was inducted into the Eastern New York State Soccer Association Hall of Fame at the organization’s Christmas Party and Hall of Fame dinner at Verdi’s on Sunday, Dec. 1.
“I am honored and also embarrassed for this award because like so many other people in this room, we don’t do this for the awards, we don’t do this for a pat on the back,” Cambria said. “We do this for the love of the game and to do service. I am honored to be here. I am honored to be part of the soccer family.”
He then thanked ENYSSA president Sal Rapaglia, Eastern District Soccer League president Peter Pinori and the league board, his wife and family.
Cambria’s expertise as an administrator spanned decades.
After graduating Southern Connecticut University with a degree in recreation and leisure management, he worked for the YDRFC before he was hired as a recreation supervisor in 1979. Cambria was in charge of sports in the city before he was promoted to director of recreation and took a personal interest in the youth soccer program.
He ran an annual Columbus Day tournament that attracted 32 teams from the tri-state area, growing to more than 250 teams. In 1994, Cambria was promoted to deputy commissioner.
In 2003, he was approached by members of a local adult recreation soccer league that played at Pelton Field and was asked to help organize the league. At the time, the league was not affiliated with ENYSSA or a local organization.
With the guidance of Pinori, Liga de Yonkers, consisting of 20 adult teams, was formed and played under the auspices of the EDSL and ENYSSA.
Cambria also was instrumental in getting five turf fields constructed before he retired in 2011.