April 1, 2013. For the next three weeks Coaches Across Continents will be working with Standard Chartered Bank in three different communities in Ghana. In total there will be four coaches working all three programs. CAC Staff members Emily Lambert and Brian Suskiewicz will be joined by our first-ever Community Impact Coach Nico Achimpota as well as a coach from the USA, Earl Strassberger.
Nico Achimpota has been instrumental for Coaches Across Continents in Tanzania. His program in Kigoma, Tanzania was our first-ever partnership in 2008. He has since brought CAC to other communities throughout his native country. This year, Nico was selected to become a pioneer in another way for CAC, being the first coach to be selected for our new initiative, our Community Impact Coach program.
Earl Strassberger comes to CAC from just outside Chicago, Illinois. He has coached and refereed at the High School and AYSO levels for the past two decades. Prior to starting a family, Earl was also in the Peace Corps and traveled around Africa in the 1970s. His home location during that time was Liberia, our most recent Community partner!
Five Questions with Earl:
1. Favorite Team – I wish my favorite team was the US Men’s National Team but they are not there yet. As soccer becomes more and more popular in the US, our team will become a world power. My favorite team was the US Women’s National Team in the Mia Hamm days. Barcelona is a close second.
2. Favorite Player – Favorite player is a tough one, there are so many. Of course Hamm, but I really like big, tough Abby Wambach. The way she could head the ball into the net was fanastic. I’ve always liked Cristano Ronaldo. Good looking, fast, and skilled. Then there is the current best player in the world, Messi.
3. Favorite Coach – My favorite coach is Lovie Smith who was the coach of the Chicago Bears for a number of years. He never got upset or mad at players. He treated them with respect. He did not overly complain to refs. Sorry, I don’t follow soccer coaches very much. It is the players’ game.
4. Favorite Movie – I did not think I could like a movie about someone with emotional issues but Silver Linings Playbook was outstanding. After that is Casa Blanca.
5. Who will win the World Cup 2014? I’ll go with the Netherlands.
Why are you looking forward to working with CAC?
– Even though I have not yet been to any country with CAC I am truly enjoying meeting people and seeing what CAC is doing. I purchased a OneWorldFutbol for myself and three as door prizes for our annual referee and coach luncheon for AYSO Region 568 (Skokie). I’m learning so much even before I leave!