U.S. Soccer has announced the members and immediate priorities for the federation’s new Participant Safety Taskforce.

Led by Chair Mana Shim, the Taskforce was created following the release of Sally Q. Yates’ independent investigation.

The Taskforce has sbeben charged with coordinating and collaborating on conduct-related policies and procedures from the youth level all the way up to professional leagues and senior national teams. While the new Yates Implementation Committee of the U.S. Soccer board of directors, led by Danielle Slaton, focuses on quickly and effectively implementing the recommendations in the Yates report, the Taskforce will push beyond those recommendations to drive change across the entire soccer ecosystem.

Former U.S. women’s national team midfielder Shannon Boxx and Maryland State Youth Soccer Association executive director Greg Smith will join Shim in the leadership of the Taskforce.

The group’s membership includes current and former players from the U.S. women’s and men’s national teams and the U.S. extended national teams, representatives from the MLS, USL, youth and adult member organizations, as well as players from the NWSL, including the president of the NWSLPA and the NWSL’s current director of strategy. They will be joined by experts in the fields of human resources, law, auditing and compliance, and player safety processes from various levels of the sport and other governing bodies such as UEFA and FIFA. Taskforce members are listed below.

“I am excited to work alongside these athletes, experts, medical professionals and advocates, who I know share my passion for action and change,” Shim said in a statement. “There is much to do, but I am confident we have a team with a wide range of experiences and viewpoints to change the culture in soccer from the ground up. Together, we will be defining new standards, policies, reporting systems and educational programs with the goal of eradicating abuse altogether from our sport.”

The Taskforce will take an athlete-focused approach, supported by subject matter experts, to thoroughly evaluate critical issues and potential solutions to the systemic problems described in the Yates report, as well as any additional issues raised via the impending NWSL/NWSLPA investigation and any concerns or proposals raised by Taskforce members directly.


Participant Safety Taskforce Membership Roster


Taskforce Chair

Mana ShimFormer NWSL player


Taskforce Vice Chairs

Shannon Boxx, Former USWNT / NWSL player

Greg SmithExecutive Director, Maryland State Youth Soccer Association


Taskforce Members

Margueritte AozasaHead Coach, UCLA women’s soccer

Nicole ArsenaultTechnical Lead, Idaho Youth Soccer

Jessica BartleyUSOPC Director of Mental Health Services and former NCAA athlete

Paul BurkeShareholder & General Counsel, Ray Quinney & Nebeker and Former President, Utah Youth Soccer

Erin ChastainHead Coach, University of Minnesota women’s soccer

Margie CloseAYSO Secretary

Anastasia DaniasExecutive Vice President & General Counsel, Major League Soccer

Tierna DavidsonUSWNT / NWSL player

Gloria FaberExecutive Director, USYS and New Mexico Youth Soccer

AD FranchUSWNT / NWSL player

Lesle GallimoreGirls Academy Commissioner, USSF Coach Educator, former USSF YNT coach and former Division I College Head Coach, Past President of United Soccer Coaches

Naomi GirmaUSWNT / NWSL player

Lauren HolidayFormer USWNT / NWSL player

Carlin HudsonFormer NWSL player and current NWSL Director of Strategy

Tori HusterNWSL player and President, NWSLPA

Greg HuttonCOO, US Club Soccer

Cynthia Labella, MDMedical Director, Institute of Sports Medicine, Ann & Robert H. Lurie Children’s Hospital of Chicago

Ben Lindau, U.S. Men’s Para National Team player

Alex MorganUSWNT / NWSL player

Kim OberleFormer FIFA referee and current national referee coach

Scott OliaroUNC Associate Director of Sports Medicine

Jason SacksPresident, Positive Coaching Alliance

Amy Saltzman, MDAbuse Educator and Founder of Spot a Spider

Tony SannehFormer USMNT / MLS player

Kwame Ofori Attah Sarkodie, DOFormer YNT captain, current Internal Medicine Hospitalist and Co-founder of soccer clinic

Shonna SchroedlUSASA Adult Council

Renee TowlesSr. Director of Safeguarding, USL

Kate WardU.S. Deaf Soccer WNT player

Yael Averbuch WestFormer USWNT player and current General Manager, NJ/NY Gotham FC

Corey WoolfolkFormer MLS player, Youth coach and HR executive  

Front Row Soccer editor Michael Lewis has covered 13 World Cups (eight men, five women), seven Olympics and 25 MLS Cups. He has written about New York City FC, New York Cosmos, the New York Red Bulls and both U.S. national teams for Newsday and has penned a soccer history column for the Guardian.com. Lewis, who has been honored by the Press Club of Long Island and National Soccer Coaches Association of America, is the former editor of BigAppleSoccer.com. He has written seven books about the beautiful game and has published ALIVE AND KICKING The incredible but true story of the Rochester Lancers. It is available at Amazon.com.