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Letter from USA Fencing Executive Director Kris Ekeren: April / May Wrapup

06/22/2015, 3:15pm CDT
By Kris Ekeren

Dear USA Fencing Members,

Please take a few moments to catch up on some of the USA Fencing’s highlights from April and May.

Sports Performance
While it is hard to believe that the Rio Games are just over a year away, excitement continues to build as our athletes enter the final stretch of preparation.

  • Team USA enjoyed great success at the Junior and Cadet World Championships with great individual and team results, including two Junior World titles from Eli Dershwitz and Sara Taffel and a Cadet World gold from Sam Moelis. Our athletes finished third in the Junior Medal Count.
  • The Pan Am Championships were also impressive for USA Fencing, with a gold sweep of the team events in the first qualifying tournament for the Olympic Games. In the individual events, Team USA won 13 medals and Lee Kiefer set a new record with her sixth straight individual gold medal in women’s foil.
  • Mariel Zagunis added to the medal haul with her sixth individual gold in women’s saber and Our Wheelchair Fencing Team also did very well at the Pan Am Championships, bringing home eight medals.
  • Congratulations to Kelley Hurley who won her first Grand Prix medal with a bronze at the Rio Epee Grand Prix.
  • Mariel Zagunis added to her medal haul this season with a bronze at the Beijing World Cup as the Women’s Saber Team also won a bronze at the event.
  • Miles Chamley-Watson was nominated for the USOC May athlete of the month award after winning the Shanghai Foil Grand Prix.

Please continue to watch our website in the upcoming weeks for information on the Rio Games including ticket information, athlete highlights and ways that you can cheer on Team USA.

Congratulations to all of the athletes who competed at the April North American Cup .  I had the opportunity to attend and enjoyed meeting several of our members while watching our young athletes and top wheelchair fencers compete in Milwaukee.

The National Office is busy preparing for Summer Nationals at San Jose.  We are looking forward to a great event and hope to see many of you at the membership meeting and other functions that occur during our largest event of the year. Click here to access the meeting schedule.

Financial Status
USA Fencing is on track to end the budget year on target with continued strong financials through the month of April.  Please note that all financial reports are posted on our website by the 20th of the following month and are shown as pending until the Board of Directors reviews and approves the reports.

The USA Fencing Board of Directors and Hall of Fame election concluded over the weekend and I would like to congratulate Laurie Schiller and Donald Alperstein on winning seats as At-Large Directors. For complete election results for both the Board of Directors and the 2016 Hall of Fame, please visit  

The USA Fencing Board of Directors would like to encourage members to consider serving as a committee or resource team member. If you would like to get involved in the 2015-16 season, please complete the application here. Volunteers are integral part of USA Fencing and we value your input and expertise.

The next USA Fencing Board of Directors will be held on Friday, June 26 at 5 p.m. at the San Jose Convention Center. The meeting is open to all members to attend.

Also, the annual membership meeting will be held on Saturday, June 27 at the San Jose Convention Center. A reception will be held at 6:30 p.m. and the meeting will follow at 7 p.m.  

At the end of May, USA Fencing had 33,382 club and individual members, which is slightly ahead of our May 2014 numbers.  I also want to remind non-competitive fencers who are considering upgrading to a competitive membership that those who upgrade between now and July 31 will receive also receive a membership for 2016-17.

Marketing and Communications
We continue to work with CMD on our branding efforts and are excited to get our membership involved in future projects as we move towards the 2015-16 membership year.

As always, if the National Office can assist with additional questions, please contact us.

All the best -


Tag(s): News