Major League Soccer and the Professional Referee Organization Friday announced 2022 World Cup referee Ismail Elfath as the MLS referee of the year and Corey Rockwell as its assistant referee of the year.

Both received the honor for the second time in their respective careers.

Elfath won the award in 2020. His illustrious career includes 193 matches MLS matches officiated, including 17 during the 2022 regular season. Elfath, who made his league officiating debut on May 19, 2012, is set to represent the U.S. and PRO as a referee in Qatar in November. Elfath joined Allen Chapman, Mark Geiger, Alan Kelly, Paul Tamberino, and Brian Hall as the officials to win this award more than once.

Rockwell is also a two-time recipient, after winning the award in 2011. He has officiated 340 MLS matches since making his officiating debut on April 8, 2005. Rockwell has served as an assistant referee for 27 games throughout the regular season. His career highlights include representing the U.S. and PRO at the 2018 World Cup in Russia and as an assistant referee in the 2019 MLS Cup final. Rockwell joins Kermit Quisenberry and Corey Parker as the only assistant referees to receive this honor twice in their careers.

Nominated by a selection process that included match officials and executives from the PRO, candidates for both MLS referee and assistant referee of the year were voted on by MLS club technical staff, media and MLS players.

Below is the voting breakdown:

Referee of the Year
Name Player Vote Club Vote Media Vote Average Vote
Elfath, Ismail 35.40% 47.20% 25.50% 36.03%
Chapman, Allen 39.10% 26.80% 31.90% 32.60%
Villarreal, Armando 25.50% 26.00% 42.60% 31.37%


Assistant Referee of the Year
Name Player Vote Club Vote Media Vote
Average Vote
Rockwell, Corey 27.40% 39.80% 44.70% 37.30%
Anderson, Ian 40.10% 37.40% 23.40% 33.63%
Elliott, Chris 32.50% 22.80% 31.90% 29.07%

A full list of the previous award winners for both awards can be found below:

MLS Referee and Assistant Referee of the Year Award Winners
Season Referee of the Year AR of the Year
2022 Ismail Elfath Corey Rockwell
2021 Robert Sibiga Cory Richardson
2020 Ismail Elfath Kathryn Nesbitt
2019 Allen Chapman Brian Dunn
2018 Alan Kelly Joe Fletcher
2017 Allen Chapman Corey Parker
2016 Alan Kelly Frank Anderson
2015 Alan Kelly Corey Parker
2014 Mark Geiger Paul Scott
2013 Hilario Grajeda Kermit Quisenberry
2012 Silviu Petrescu Ian Anderson
2011 Mark Geiger Corey Rockwell
2010 Kevin Stott Craig Lowry
2009 Alex Prus Greg Barkey
2008 Jair Marrufo Kermit Quisenberry
2007 Brian Hall N/A
2006 Brian Hall N/A
2005 Brian Hall N/A
2004 Abiodun Okulaja N/A
2003 Brian Hall N/A
2002 Kevin Terry N/A
2001 Paul Tamberino N/A
2000 Paul Tamberino N/A
1999 Paul Tamberino N/A
1998 Paul Tamberino N/A
1997 Esse Baharmast N/