COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. — Growing the sport of parafencing in the United States will take an investment of time, treasure and talent.
Today, USA Fencing is pleased to announce some major news in the talent department. After a nationwide search that yielded impressive candidates from across the sporting landscape, we’ve hired Beth Mahr to serve as our first Parafencing Manager.
While USA Fencing has had staff members responsible for parafencing in the past, this marks the first time that we’ve had someone whose sole focus will be on growing parafencing in the United States.
“I am thrilled to step into this role and work with the coaches, athletes and clubs across the country to grow the U.S. parafencing program from the grassroots through our National Team,” Mahr says. “This is an exciting time for the sport gearing up for Paris 2024 and developing a strong pipeline for LA 2028 as well as increasing parafencing participation opportunities for adaptive athletes everywhere.”
Mahr’s responsibilities will include:
Managing the parafencing program, with a primary focus on sport development
Increasing the number of parafencers at the grassroots level
Providing opportunities for para coach, referee and classifier recruitment and development
Providing USA Fencing member clubs with resources to start or increase parafencing programs
Supporting the USA Fencing Development Department with fundraising efforts related to parafencing
Developing opportunities to showcase and promote parafencing in order to grow participation in the sport
Planning logistics for teams attending the Parafencing World Championships, World Cups and the Paralympic Games
Mahr moves into her new role after more than six months with USA Fencing as Regional Development Manager, where she oversaw the regional tournament sanctioning program and worked with fencing clubs and divisions across the country to develop the sport at the grassroots level. Before that, she spent three years managing disabled hockey programs at USA Hockey.
“We received many excellent resumes, but Beth’s talent, vision and experience in para sport really stood out,” says Kate Reisinger, USA Fencing’s Chief of Sport Performance. “Beth’s skills run the gamut — from the intricate planning required to manage a national team to the bold vision needed to build a sport from the ground up. And the timing couldn’t be better as we look to grow parafencing in the lead-up to the 2028 Los Angeles Paralympics.”
Through May 15, Mahr will be serving “double duty” — splitting her time between her role on the regional side while also starting work on the parafencing side. On May 15, she will fully move into the parafencing role.
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