United Soccer Coaches Thursday announced the selection of Deborah Raber as the 2021 Mike Berticelli Excellence in Coaching Education Award for her outstanding contributions teaching coaches and service to the game.

Raber, a member of the National Coaching Academy Staff for the association, becomes the 22nd person to receive the prestigious recognition from her peers. The award is named in honor of Mike Berticelli, the former United Soccer Coaches vice president of education and men’s coach at the University of Notre Dame who passed away in 2000. Raber serves as instructor for both the National and Advanced National Diploma courses as well as all levels of the association’s Goalkeeping certification courses.
“Deb Raber is a most appropriate and deserving recipient of our Berticelli Award,” said Ian Barker, Director of Coaching Education. “She is a thoughtful and compassionate educator who has the ability to keep curriculum relevant for coaches at every level of the game. She is an integral part of our National Academy Staff. The candidates at our diploma courses are very fortunate to have her serving on the instructional staff.”

She also is dedicated to other positive service to the association and the game. She is a longtime member of the organization’s Ethics Committee and is the National Chair of the Senior College Women’s Scholar All-America Committee.

Raber has been a head college coach for 29 years and is the women’s soccer coach at Massachusetts College of Liberal Arts in North Adams, Mass. She also serves her college as director of the Fitness Center and is the strength and conditioning coach for all of the athletic teams at MCLA.

The Berticelli Award will be presented at the association’s Awards Banquet Friday, Jan. 21, in conjunction with the 82nd annual United Soccer Coaches Convention in Kansas City, Mo.