Staff

Leadership

Tom Crawford

CEO

Tom Crawford

Leadership
CEO

Pronouns: He/Him

Joined USA Ultimate: August 2009
Hometown: Cranston, RI
College: Siena, Purdue, Indiana

About:
I am USA Ultimate’s chief executive officer and an ex-officio member of the board of directors.

Prior to working at USA Ultimate, I was an entrepreneur, founding multiple companies, as well as working with NFL, NHL and NBA franchises. I worked for the United States Olympic Committee as Managing Director of High Performance Programs (Venture 2000), and as Director of Coaching, was honored to work with virtually all Olympic teams and coaches.

I like to run/walk every day, travel to the French West Indies and explore lots of interesting wines and books. I also love to hang out with my family and play with my grandsons!

Fun Facts:

  1. Although most don’t know it, I have in fact played ultimate, and I am undefeated.
  2. I was a two-sport varsity athlete at a Division I college…for 24 hours, when the tennis coach found out I had made the basketball team. He had other plans.
  3. I grew up tough, and when I was 17, had a hit taken out on me by a made member of the New England Mafia. I was saved at the last minute by my tribe. It was ugly, but they never tried again!
  4. My wife is amazing! She is the Senior Director of International Operations at the U.S. Olympic Committee and Director of the Summer Olympic Games. She is also gorgeous…I totally over-achieved!

Finance & Administration

Julia Lee

Director

Julia Lee

Finance & Administration
Director

Pronouns: She/Her

Joined USA Ultimate: February 2011
Hometown: Atlanta, GA
College: University of Georgia

About: 

As lead for the finance and administration department, I mastermind financial planning and reporting and support the board, the staff and all of the administrative office functions, including human resources, IT, logistics, insurance, etc. I also help out with fundraising and the new Ultimate Foundation.

I worked as an accounting and tax consultant at Ernst & Young before specializing in non-profits.

I played ultimate for 10 years on Atlanta Ozone before moving to Boston, where I joined Brute Squad for one season (although I tore my ACL two weeks into the season – doh!). After moving to Colorado, I played one season with Atlanta Bucket and one season with Boulder Jackwagon but mostly started focusing on coaching.

I like cooking (and eating!), reading, UGA football and spending time with my husband Andy, our daughter Sophie and our dog Maya.

Fun Facts:

1. I have a daughter named Sophie. She’s the best thing I’ve ever done.

2. I have played at 15 UPA/USA Ultimate National Championships – four in college with Georgia (including winning it all in 2001!), 10 in the club women’s division with Ozone and one in the club mixed division with Bucket.

Competition & National Team Programs

Will Deaver

Managing Director

Will Deaver

Competition & National Team Programs
Managing Director

Joined USA Ultimate: January 2001
Hometown: Warner Robins, GA
College: University of Georgia (BS and MS)

About:

I am responsible for overseeing USA Ultimate’s competition and athlete programs, including over 250 events in USAU’s 20 divisions of competition and over a dozen national teams. I also direct programs for coaching, youth outreach, Spirit of the Game, rules, officiating and conduct.

I transitioned into sports administration and event management from parks and recreation. Prior to working at the UPA/USAU, I worked at a regional park in Athens, Ga., and as a raft guide in Ocoee, Tenn.

I played ultimate at the University of Georgia for five years, beginning in the fall of 1993. I played club ultimate for Atlanta’s Chain Lightning (1996-2000) and Boulder’s Johnny Bravo (2001-2006, 2008). I’ve played at three College Nationals, nine Club Nationals, two WFDF World Championships (WUCC) and the IWGA World Games where I was part of Team U.S.A.’s gold-medal run in 2005.

I live in Louisville, Colo., with my wife Melanie and sons Liam and Jack. Outside of ultimate, I enjoy outdoor activities with my family, including mountain biking, camping and snowboarding/skiing. I also enjoy tennis, goaltimate and entertaining myself playing guitar and piano.

Fun Facts:

1. I co-authored the Callahan Rules for college ultimate, along with Charles Kerr, in 1997. These rules introduced many now-standard parts of the game, including the defensive (Callahan) goal, time limits and the current role of observers.

2. When I left college, I held the intramural bench press record at the University of Georgia (for the lightest weight class).

3. While playing pool in a bar, I got into a standoff with a drunk, racist guy. My girlfriend punched him in the face. I married her.

Ben Feng

Manager - Competition & National Team Programs - College

Ben Feng

Competition & National Team Programs
Manager - Competition & National Team Programs - College

Pronouns: He/Him/His

Joined USA Ultimate: June 2021
Hometown: Andover, MA
College: Georgetown, Oregon (MBA)

About:

I am responsible for the oversight of USA Ultimate’s college division programs and Under-24 U.S. National Team, including athlete, competition and event management and overall program development. I previously worked in operations for the National Women’s Soccer League (NWSL) and served as a strategic consultant to Fox Sports. My hobbies include hiking, Spikeball, board games and dogs. As an ultimate coach, I led youth teams to three national titles in the U-19 mixed division. As an athlete, I have competed at the Club Championships four times, most recently earning a silver medal at the 2019 USA Ultimate National Championships with San Francisco Mischief.

Fun Facts:

1. I’ve been to 13 national parks since August 2020.

2. I’ve lived in 6 states (VA, MA, OR, CA, UT, CO) since 2017.

3. I’ve attended every non-Sarasota Club Championships since 2000, but I have never been to Sarasota.

Joy Ferenbaugh

Manager - Competition & National Team Programs - Youth

Joy Ferenbaugh

Competition & National Team Programs
Manager - Competition & National Team Programs - Youth

Pronouns: She/Her/Hers

Joined USA Ultimate: June 2017
Hometown: Los Alamos, NM
College: UC-Davis, Minnesota, Texas Tech

About:

At USA Ultimate, I help organize, manage and run our youth championship events: state championships, YCC at the U.S. Open, the Youth Fall Cups and the U-20 National Teams. I also oversee the youth competition guidelines and their updates with my four amazing regional youth directors.

At the age of five, I told my parents I was going to be a marine biologist. So after I checked that off my list, I ended up as an assistant professor in the Integrated Science and Technology (ISAT) Department at James Madison University. I coached the women’s team (go Bmonks!) there, before coming to USAU.

I started playing ultimate at California-Davis, in the intramural league, but didn’t play competitively until grad school at Texas Tech. Now, many moons later, I’ve played on some high-caliber teams, attending Worlds twice (2002 and 2010) and winning Nationals in 2009 with Axis of C’ville (yeah, mixed division!).

In addition to ultimate, I play jack of all trades with my hobbies: running, mountain biking, rock climbing, road biking, mountain climbing, horseback riding, dog momming, hiking/camping, gaming (board & RPG), etc.

Fun Facts:

1. I am a grammar freak, so I love Stacey very much.

2. I knew Byron back when he could play – Texas isn’t as big as it thinks it is.

3. I have been to six of the seven continents, and I have been to the highest points in Europe and Africa, on foot.

Carolina Gonzalez-Llanos

Manager - Competition & National Team Programs - Club; Co-Chair - Equity, Diversity and Inclusion

Carolina Gonzalez-Llanos

Competition & National Team Programs
Manager - Competition & National Team Programs - Club; Co-Chair - Equity, Diversity and Inclusion

Pronouns: She/Her

Joined USA Ultimate: March 2019
Hometown: Pembroke Pines, FL
College: University of Central Florida

About:

I oversee the three club divisions (men’s, mixed and women’s) and adult National Teams. Before coming to Colorado Springs for this role at USAU, I was the Director of Ecommerce and HR Manager at Five Ultimate. You may have heard of them. Aside from that, I’ve interned at two Olympic Games with NBC Sports and had a stint with Hard Rock International.

I love to play sports. I grew up playing tennis and soccer, then picked up a black belt in Tae Kwon Do, played volleyball, and around 2011, picked up a plastic disc and decided to center my entire life around it. I also love snowboarding, even though I grew up in the flattest and hottest state. My best friend has also somehow convinced me to start running half marathons. Jury is still out on whether I enjoy it or not.

I first picked up a disc my junior year at UCF and was on the team that made it to the semis at the College Championships in 2014. The following year, I went to Florida State for grad school and played with the Seminole Ladies. During this time, I played one season with Mooseknuckle, now known as Swing State, then with Tabby Rosa for three years before picking up and moving clear across the country to Seattle. There, I played one year with Seattle Soul.

Fun Facts:

1. I’m one of five children and have over 20 cousins.

2. I once traveled to three continents within two weeks, going from Sochi (Olympics) to Orlando (school) to San Francisco (tournament) to Buenos Aires (wedding-not mine). The combined mileage was longer than the equator.

3. I snorkeled Silfra and got to touch the North American side of the tectonic plate and European tectonic plate almost simultaneously (my arms were too short).

Byron Hicks

Events Manager

Byron Hicks

Competition & National Team Programs
Events Manager

Joined USA Ultimate: September 2008
Hometown: Texas

About:

As event manager, I work with convention and visitors bureaus, sports commissions and local disc organizations to help bring great events to the world. I also manage masters division competition. Prior to working at USA Ultimate, I worked in retail management. When not working, I enjoy spending time with my children, cycling, road trips and hanging out at home. I started playing ultimate in 1983 in Texas. I have captained teams in four divisions at Nationals. I was a long-time sectional and regional coordinator and was recognized as coordinator of the year in both positions.

Fun Facts:

1. In the fifth grade, I was left behind on a field trip at the Fields Museum in Chicago.

2. I can drive longer than anyone at USA Ultimate without stopping.

3. I once won a game of Trivial Pursuit on my first turn.

Dana Jefferson

Manager - Competition & National Team Programs - Youth; Co-Chair - Equity, Diversity and Inclusion

Dana Jefferson

Competition & National Team Programs
Manager - Competition & National Team Programs - Youth; Co-Chair - Equity, Diversity and Inclusion

Pronouns: She/Her, They/Them, She/They

Joined USA Ultimate: May 2019
College: Hampshire College
Hometown: St. Paul, MN

About:

I played a lot of sports growing up, but I did not start playing ultimate until my first year of college. While I enjoyed playing, I never expected to stick with it as long as I have, but I am glad I did. Before joining USA Ultimate, I got my start coaching and volunteering with Minnesota Ultimate. Soon enough, I was helping manage the Middle School Spring League Program for them. Seeing so much ultimate growth and at the youth level was an amazing experience, one which I am excited to still be a part of. Working in the Competition & National Team Programs Department will allow me to continue working with not just youth ultimate, but other competition divisions as well.

People ask what I enjoy doing outside of ultimate, since it seems to be all I ever talk about, but I swear I have other hobbies. When I am not doing something ultimate-related, I am often exploring the town for the best brunch spots, camping, hiking, biking, hanging out with friends/family, traveling, binging my new favorite show or sleeping.

Fun Facts:

1. I impulsively buy potted plants at the grocery store.

2. I had a pretty epic bowl cut as a kid.

3. I own a minivan that has over 344,700 miles on it and counting. Hoping to get it to 400,000. Bring it on Byron.

David Raflo

Events Manager

David Raflo

Competition & National Team Programs
Events Manager

Pronouns: He/Him/His

Joined USA Ultimate: January 2012
Hometown: Springfield, VA
College: University of Virginia

About:

As one of USA Ultimate’s event managers, I get to help plan some of the world’s finest ultimate tournaments. I switched to planning ultimate events from helping people with their retirement planning after about 15 years in the financial services industry. I still play ultimate when I can (though many say I never could), but I also chase plastic on the internet as I am collecting old discs and paraphernalia. I started playing ultimate in college and volunteered for many years and in various roles with the UPA, WAFC and Minnesota High School Ultimate League.

Fun Facts:

1. I have been to Colombia, Brazil and Mexico to serve as WFDF Tournament Technical Director for the Pan American Ultimate Championships.

2. I got to coach ultimate to scores of great kids at Edina High School in Minnesota.

3. Many people think I am slow because of all of the knee surgeries I’ve had, but no, I am truly naturally slow.

Marketing, Communications & Brand

Andy Lee

Managing Director

Andy Lee

Marketing, Communications & Brand
Managing Director

Joined USA Ultimate: May 2010
Hometown: Delafield, WI
College: University of Wisconsin–La Crosse

About:

At USA Ultimate, I am responsible for establishing the organization’s overall marketing, communications and public and media relations strategy and directing the department’s day-to-day operations, including television and media partnerships, sponsorship and licensing, branding and business development.

Prior to my relatively recent introduction to the sport of ultimate, I served in a similar capacity for USA Cycling (2003-08) after spending several years as an assistant director and global operations and media relations manager for Saturn Cycling – one of America’s longest-running and most successful professional cycling teams. As a sports marketer on the agency side with Team Sports, Inc., I also planned and implemented mobile marketing tours and athlete-brand relationships for several A-list clients in the action sports space, including Tommy Hilfiger, Volvo, Timex, Saturn, Cannondale and Rollerblade.

My experience in the Olympic world began with one of the most exclusive internship programs at the U.S. Olympic Committee as a sports management undergrad at UW-La Crosse. Since then, I had the privilege of serving on three U.S. Olympic Team delegations as a press officer in Athens (2004), Torino (2006) and Beijing (2008), as well as an athlete/media liaison at 18 World Championships and Pan American Games for Team USA.

When not working, I enjoy cycling, snowboarding, traveling, eating, watching the Green Bay Packers, mowing the lawn and spending time with my wife Julia, our daughter Sophie and our dog Maya.

Fun Facts:

1. A fanatic of Led Zeppelin, along with my childhood friend since the age of eight, Mike, we’ve attended 69 live performances by the surviving members of the band since 1995 across 22 states, the U.K. and China, including the legendary 2007 reunion concert in London where we camped out for three days to be the first two people in line, scored front row seats and witnessed the final, private rehearsal for the show as VIP guests of the band.

2. I was a record-holding NCAA collegiate high jumper with a 42″ vertical and a college dunk contest victory to my name.

3. As a travel enthusiast, I’ve been to 49 states – all but Alaska – and 25 countries.

Haley Hammond

Manager - Digital Content and Design

Haley Hammond

Marketing, Communications & Brand
Manager - Digital Content and Design

Pronouns: She/Her

Joined USA Ultimate: July 2021
Hometown: Newport News, VA
College: Radford University

About:

I manage our social media accounts and content creation, including motion graphics, photography and design. Previously, I worked at Minor League Baseball in St. Petersburg, Fla., as the multimedia designer and as a filmmaker and photographer at Frequency Creative in Williamsburg, Va. Outside of work, I like to go longboarding, geocaching and hiking with my dog. I have more than 10 years of experience playing ultimate through high school, college, recreational leagues, club, pickup and coaching.

Fun Facts:

1. I’ve been camping in the Australian outback.

2. My birthmark covers half my body.

3. My go-to fun fact was always that I play ultimate but that doesn’t make me unique anymore.

Member Services & Community Development

Stacey Waldrup

Director; Co-Chair - Equity, Diversity and Inclusion

Stacey Waldrup

Member Services & Community Development
Director; Co-Chair - Equity, Diversity and Inclusion

Pronouns: She/Her

Joined USA Ultimate: February 2013
Hometown: Raleigh, NC
College: Appalachian State University

About:

My main responsibilities are managing the sport’s growing infrastructure through USA Ultimate’s state-based organization and affiliate programs and overseeing our event sanctioning programs, as well as serving our 60,000+ members.

I spent my first seven years at USA Ultimate in the marketing and communications department, managing the organizations publications and communications efforts. Prior to joining USAU, I spent four years working for the North Carolina School Boards Association in Raleigh in communications and education policy. I started playing ultimate at Appalachian State and continued to play at the club level in the Triangle Area after graduating, mostly in the mixed division. I even got to play at Club Nationals once with wHagonweel before joining USAU. In addition to still playing ultimate, I love all things Colorado: hiking, camping, backpacking, rafting, good beer and great music, as well as reading and traveling as much as possible.

Fun Facts:

1. I took baton-twirling lessons as a kid. Yep, that’s a thing.

2. Before picking up ultimate in college, I was a high school band dork. I played the clarinet.

3. I grew up in a town most people think is made up – Soddy Daisy, Tenn.

Sam Callan

Manager - Youth & Education Programs

Sam Callan

Member Services & Community Development
Manager - Youth & Education Programs

Pronouns: He/Him/His

Joined USA Ultimate: October 2019
Hometown: Rome, GA
College: University of Georgia, Appalachian State, Georgia State

About:

The main focus of my role is working on coach education and youth programs to make ultimate even better!

So far, my biggest career highlight was probably being heavily involved in sport science research projects at the 1996 Olympic Games.

I am a runner, although less competitive than in my younger days. These days, I am content running the amazing trails around Colorado Springs and spending summer days on the Arkansas River kayaking, rafting and SUP-ing.

Fun Facts:

1. I have been to every craft brewery in El Paso (CO) County.

2. I love to whitewater kayak but have not gotten my roll down…yet.

3. I have solo parachuted twice – looking to do it again!

Leah Dolan-Kelley

Manager - Community Development & HR

Leah Dolan-Kelley

Member Services & Community Development
Manager - Community Development & HR

Pronouns: She/Her

Joined USA Ultimate: May 2015
Hometown: Easton, MA
College: Emerson College

About:

I started at USA Ultimate as the Manager of Event Sanctioning in May of 2015. I oversaw all sanctioned events and worked with event directors to plan and execute tournaments, clinics and practices. In 2018 I moved into the role of Manager of Community Services and Development where I continued to support our affiliate program and the community in growing ultimate. I am currently the Manager of Community Development & HR and am happy to connect with our membership and affiliates and be a resource for them as well as a resource for our staff as the HR Manager.

I’ve been playing ultimate since 2008 and club since 2014. I love playing ultimate and have been fortunate enough to play in great communities and meet wonderful people all across the nation.

When I’m not working I’m outside enjoying the Rocky Mountains! I love to mountain bike, climb, hike, ski and explore!

Fun Facts:

1. I have been vegan since 2012!

2. I worked as a story assistant on Here Comes Honey Boo Boo!

3. My ultimate nickname is DK!

Kirstin Graham

Manager - Online Technology

Kirstin Graham

Member Services & Community Development
Manager - Online Technology

Pronouns: She/Her

Joined USA Ultimate: March 2018
Hometown: Colorado Springs, CO
College: Colorado Technical University

About:

As the online technology manager, I am responsible for the technical aspects of the online presence of USA Ultimate. I have worked for over 15 years in software development. My career path started with Lockheed Martin and, most recently, has moved into the non-profit sector.

I moved out to Colorado as a kid and have enjoyed all the outdoor activities Colorado has to offer. I enjoy spending time outside with my family, skiing, hiking and listening to live music at Red Rocks.

Fun Facts:

1. I have two standard poodles. One looks like and is named after Rowlf from the Muppets.

2. I’ve been to 30 concerts and counting.

3. I’ve attempted to hike up two different 14ers to watch the sunrise….missed the trail and hiked up a different mountain both times.

Sarah Powers

Manager - Youth & Outreach Programs

Sarah Powers

Member Services & Community Development
Manager - Youth & Outreach Programs

Pronouns: She/Her

Joined USA Ultimate: January 2015
Hometown: Columbus, OH
College: Allegheny College

About:

I manage USA Ultimate’s outreach programming, initiatives and volunteers, including Learn to Play and clinics and leagues and the Girls’ Ultimate Movement. I run our Coach and Organizer Convention and National Team Talent ID Camps as well. Previously, I worked for an academic department at The Ohio State University coordinating events, managing the website, developing programming and trips for students, initiating fiscal transactions and managing, writing and taking photos for the departmental newsletter sent out to alumni.

I am a long-time runner and have really enjoyed getting into trail running since moving out to Colorado. When I’m not training for a race, I like tackling 14ers, hiking, biking, backpacking, reading and live music.

I began playing ultimate after Bexley High School cross country practices. I played for one semester in college and continued while living in Madrid after graduating. Since then, I have played in Columbus leagues and with a mixed club team, coached a high school ultimate team and volunteered for CUDA. I continue to play ultimate in Colorado.

Fun Facts:

1. I started my high school cross country team at Columbus School for Girls and practiced with Bexley during my first year as the only runner at my school.

2. I taught English and introduced American culture to elementary students in Madrid, Spain, for nine months after college. My favorite part was singing songs with the kindergarteners and creating science Jeopardy for the third graders.

3. I competed in pageants as a child and modeled. I have a few tiaras, sashes, medals and grocery store ads as proof!