Sports Officiating Summit 2016 Logo


Officiating in the Future Tense: Change Mindsets, Build Intelligence

In today’s world of officiating, officials are under more scrutiny than ever before. Officials are being suspended for judgment calls that more than 20 years ago would have been a write-up and a mistake to learn from. More and more media outlets are using technology to enhance the viewing experience for the fans and are showing critical calls from multiple angles in slow motion — while the officials get one look live in the moment. Officials are left wondering: What does the future hold in store? Do we need to change our mindsets and build our intelligence to become better officials?

The 34th annual Sports Officiating Summit, being held July 31-August 2 in San Antonio at the Grand Hyatt San Antonio, will try to answer those questions and help officials adapt to the future of officiating. The Summit will bring together more than 500 officials and officiating administrators from various levels ranging from high school, collegiate and professional ranks. It’s the industry event of the year and we want to see you there.

NASO Member
  • Grand Opening
  • Welcome Reception
  • Officiating Luncheon
  • Exhibit Hall
  • Celebrate Officiating Gala
Group (Members)
  • Grand Opening
  • Welcome Reception
  • Officiating Luncheon
  • Exhibit Hall
  • Celebrate Officiating Gala
  • Grand Opening
  • Welcome Reception
  • Officiating Luncheon
  • Exhibit Hall
  • Celebrate Officiating Gala

Click a Session below to view more details.

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JULY 31 - AUGUST 2, 2016 Schedule

7 am
8 am
9 am
10 am
11 am
12 pm
1 pm
2 pm
3 pm
4 pm
5 pm
6 pm
7 pm
8 pm
9 pm
10 pm
July 31st
Registration Open
12:00 pm - 6:45 pm

Time: 12:00 PM - 6:45 PM
Location: 2nd Floor – Lonestar Ballroom Foyer

Grand Opening

Time: 7:00 PM - 8:00 PM
Location: Lonestar Ballroom DEF

The kickoff for the 34th Sports Officiating Summit begins at the Grand Hyatt San Antonio. Paul Ryan, Speaker of the House and first congressional district representative for the state of Wisconsin, provides a pre-recorded welcome message. Industry-leading speakers will set the tone for Officiating in the Future Tense: Change Mindsets and Build Intelligence.

Referee’s 40th Birthday Party
8:00 pm - 10:00 pm

Time: 8:00 PM - 10:00 PM
Location: San Antonio Convention Center

Directly following the Grand Opening, join us for the party of the year as Referee Magazine celebrates its 40th birthday! Mingle with the biggest names in officiating, enjoy a fantastic spread of hors d’oeuvres, sample Referee’s new signature cocktail at the bar, and get a picture of yourself on the cover of Referee. Stick around for the presentation of the birthday cake and the champagne toast, and don’t forget to pick up your goodie bag full of exclusive birthday presents for every attendee. This event is included with your registration fee.

August 1st
Officiating in the Present Tense

Time: 8:00 AM - 8:45 AM
Location: Lonestar Ballroom DEF

“Where is officiating today?” If asked that question, what would be your answer? More public scrutiny and more publics scrutinizing. Less room for error and less room for leadership to maneuver. Heightened use of technology and heightened use of top-down judgment calls. Today “the best refereed game is when you don’t know the officials were there” is no longer true. At the end of the day, can we say sports officials are in a better place?

So, Where is Officiating Headed?

Time: 9:00 AM - 9:45 AM
Location: Lonestar Ballroom DEF

The reality of the present is much clearer, though some of it discomforting. There are challenges that must be met. The panelists and the entire audience will face the discomfort and the challenges together. “Officiating in the Future Tense” lands in our laps. “No comment” and lack of proactive response both are no longer an option. What must be done to ensure officiating outcomes and the officiating ethic remain in relative harmony or at least in synch? The future of officiating will need a special handholding.

Break Down That Play

Time: 10:00 AM - 10:45 AM
Location: Lonestar Ballroom DEF

Each speaker will, with candor and openness, break down video of a noteworthy personal call. The context, the call, the explanation, the supremely teachable moment - learn what actually happened, why the call was made or not. Frame by frame, pixel by pixel, take an unforgettable journey into play calling. Only at the Summit can you experience such a presentation – watch the play, hear the words of the play caller, feel the emotion!

Game Changers: Fresh Thinking, New Products, Innovative Solutions

Time: 10:55 AM - 12:00 PM

10:55 AM -11:25 AM
Bowie A – Vokkero
Bowie C – InCheck
Travis A/B – Get It Right
Travis D - Referee Digital Media
Presidio A – Ref 360
Presidio C – Who We Are As Officials – A Research Presentation: Dr. Robert Doan

11:30 AM - 12:00PM
Bowie A – ArbiterSports
Bowie C – Zooom
Travis A/B – Qwik Ref
Travis D - NASO Association Advantage Presidio A – Australian Sports Commission – Development of High Performing Officials
Presidio C – Who We Are As Officials – A Research Presentation: Dr. Robert Doan

Back by popular demand! One of the Summit’s most practical bank of sessions! Shorter presentations, fast-paced and each focused on a topic of unique importance. Each Game Changer has been carefully selected by NASO. You will be able to attend more than one of these sessions because of the way they are timed. Each speaker has a concept or a product that can be a Game Changer for you and your officiating program. Yes, the “game is changing.”

Officiating Industry Luncheon (OIL)
12:15 pm - 1:30 pm

Time: 12:15 PM - 1:30 PM
Location: 4th Floor - Texas Ballroom

The Officiating Industry Luncheon (OIL) is the largest attended event of every Summit. A beautifully catered meal followed by remarks on the state of sports and officiating by a representative of the NFHS and by Barry Mano, president of NASO. The audience is composed of the best and brightest in the world of officiating – at all levels. The OIL provides the only annual national-overview of the main accomplishments and the primary challenges of officiating management: high school, youth, collegiate and professional. Don’t miss it.

Should Officials Be Suspended?

Time: 1:45 PM - 2:30 PM
Location: Lonestar Ballroom DEF

The easiest answer would be no! But the easiest answer is a non-starter. Certain officiating shortcomings warrant a suspension. Many others, and many which currently result in suspensions, do not. Time for this contentious issue to be scrubbed down in the sunshine of thoughtful discussion. If suspensions are a management tool, then let’s learn more fully what the management policy-manual has to say about the boundaries, the penalties and the purview of decision-making surrounding “sitting” sports officials. The ride could be bumpy but guaranteed it will also be path-breaking. You will not think of officiating-suspensions the same ever again.

Integrity Programs and Sports Officials: What Are We Waiting For?

Time: 2:45 PM - 3:15 PM
Location: Lonestar Ballroom DEF

Integrity and compliance programs are common in most business sectors and industries including defense, financial services and healthcare. But in the sports industry, where scandals and misconduct involving players, coaches and officials make front-page news almost daily, sports organizations have lagged in the development and implementation of effective integrity and compliance programs geared towards preventing the wrongdoing we are seeing. This session will provide an overview of effective integrity and compliance programs, and examine how officiating leaders can help sports organizations address integrity and ethical issues.

Sport-Savvy Interactive Video Clinics

Time: 3:30 PM - 4:30 PM
Lonestar Ballroom DEF - Football
Lonestar Ballroom A - Baseball
Lonestar Ballroom C - Basketball
Presidio A - Softball
Bowie B - Volleyball
Presidio C - Soccer

Watch. Listen. Express yourself. Learn. These sport-by-sport video breakdown sessions have record-breaking attendance every Summit. Immerse yourself in a sport you work or manage. Led by some of the most respected and renowned officials. Watch the play, hear the breakdown, listen to the dialog and then add your perspective. Together with the others, you help to build the body of officiating knowledge and practice. Hands on. Ears open. Mind engaged. Let’s go for it!

Autograph sessions

Time: 4:30 PM - 5:30 PM
Location: 2nd Floor – Lonestar Ballroom Foyer

After the day’s sessions are over, take time to visit with exhibitors and meet some officiating legends. Mike Pereira, Fox Sports analyst; Jerry Markbreit, retired NFL referee; Marcy Weston, former NCAA womens’ basketball national coordinator; and Joe Crawford, retired NBA referee, will be signing autographs and posing for pictures. Start your night out with some fun!

August 2nd
Top Management Talks Officiating

Time: 8:00 AM - 9:00 AM
Location: Lonestar Ballroom DEF

The goal: ask preeminent league and conference commissioners to sit on this panel and talk straight about their officiating programs. Hear their thoughts about officiating as a component of their product lines. Get their overviews about the investment in technology, replay and command centers. Probe with questions about the goal they have for their officiating regimes and administration, beyond the usual platitudes and clichés. How does top management view its officials and its responsibility to a more public accountability for their work? At the heart of the matter we will hear answers to this question: What is the expectation and the accountability of officials as seen by the front office?

Let's Celebrate Great Calls

Time: 9:15 AM - 10:00 AM
Location: Lonestar Ballroom DEF

Great calls. Gorgeous calls. Gigantic calls. Game-making calls. Gut-wrenching calls. Here they are! A showcase of officials doing what they do best: making terrific calls - calls that took courage, history and a willingness to stand apart when it mattered most. Supervisors and coordinators showcase a call made by a staff member. It is more than just getting the play right…though that sure is sweet. Watch and hear officials at their very best and in ways only those of us in officiating can best appreciate. It’s a wonderful way for us to enjoy the fruits of our special expertise.

The Law and Liability "Live"

Time: 10:15 AM - 11:00 AM
Location: Lonestar Ballroom DEF

New this year – the session goes “live!” Includes questions from the audience and the online community - questions and answers that will give you essential insights. The best defense is a good offense – especially when it comes to the legal rights and responsibilities held by officials. Throw in liabilities and insurance protections and you quickly understand the Officiating Industry has matured and has issues to resolve just like any other professional or organizational sector. Presented by the three most recognized experts: Alan Goldberger, respected as the foremost authority on sports officials and the law; Drew Smith, president of American Specialty Insurance, the country’s premiere provider of insurance to the officiating community; Don Collins, executive director of the San Francisco section of the California Interscholastic Federation and practicing lawyer.

Officiating: We Believe!

Time: 11:15 AM - 12:00 PM
Location: Lonestar Ballroom DEF

Isn’t it time we told our own story? Our story describing why we believe officiating is such a worthy and fulfilling endeavor? Yes, it is, and we will in this session. Unique and uplifting. Hear, see, experience the stories that will make you stand, cheer and even tear up. We need this session and we need it now. Reading the media today, you might think officials are worse than ever before when they are better than ever before — and we have the proof. The “better” we mean comes from the heart. These stories will stay with you a lifetime.

Lunch Workshops: Your Food for Thought
12:30 pm - 2:00 pm

Time: 12:30 PM - 2:00 PM

• The Front: Leading from Behind Does Not Work
Location: Lonestar Ballroom DEF

Step up. Step in. Step on it. If you are going to lead, you will need to do that from the front. Once you find your way to the front, you will need to turn around and face what is behind you: your history, your strengths and your shortcomings. You will need to steep yourself in the history and culture of those who are now to be your team. The phrase: “the front” means authority but it also defines an area of risk. You will not have one without the other. Here is help from those who have made the transition most successfully.

• State High School Association Annual Forum
Location: Bonham B

Invitation-only, closed-door, workshop for state high school office executives and staff members - a unique opportunity to share ideas and best practices. Topics include: online registrations, state-tournament officiating selections, video as raw material, the media and officiating errors, recruitment, background checks, budgeting and many more.

• When to Fight: Local Association Leadership on the Line
Location: Bonham C

Fight or flight? More and more local officials associations are being asked by members to provide visible and public support. It is never an easy decision by leadership but one that increasingly must be considered. The questions are easy: what if, when, who and in what way? The hard part is having policies and procedures in place to guide such actions. Have the game plan before you need to play it. An association exists to serve its members. Public support has become a key component of that service.

Voice Lessons: It’s About Respect

Time: 2:15 PM - 3:00 PM
Location: Lonestar Ballroom DEF

Officials still search for their voice. Not the one they use to make calls. The one that ultimately defines their collective experience. This session uses three riveting case studies to demonstrate how officials who thoughtfully approached new challenges were able to embed respect into the conversation. From organizing a single voice, or thinking lawyer-like before signing a contract/waiver, or publicly explaining game calls – to be effective, it took intelligence, a changed mindset and courage.

The "IT" Factor with Mike Pereira

Time: 3:15 PM - 4:15 PM
Location: Lonestar Ballroom DEF

You know the “It Factor” when you see it. Fox Sports analyst, Mike Pereira, sure does and better than most. This is Mike’s session – his opportunity to present to you an unbeatable combination of vibrant and visible officiating personalities. Each has the “It Factor” and you will see it in video and in person. The “It Factor” brought to life at an elite level – important games, big calls, unique skills and that special “feel” to do the especially the right thing at the exact right time. You will know it when you see it, with Mike as your guide.

Cocktail Hour

Time: 5:30 PM - 6:30 PM
Location: Lonestar Ballroom Foyer

Celebrate Officiating Gala
6:30 pm - 9:30 pm

Time: 6:30 PM - 9:30 PM
Location: Lonestar Ballroom DEF

A can’t miss event. Join us as we celebrate the best that officiating has to offer during an elegant evening banquet. NASO is privileged to recognize the efforts of outstanding people and outstanding calls through the Gold Whistle Award, the Mel Narol Medallion Award and the Great Call Award. You’ll feel enormous satisfaction and tremendous pride in knowing you are a part of the officiating community –while at the same time helping to recognize those being honored.

Travel & Housing


San Antonio, Texas



Getting Here & There

Rental Car


Once You’re There

Grand Hyatt San Antonio
600 E Market Street
San Antonio, TX 78205