Steven Parker

Q&A with Steven Parker, Program Associate

Coaching Corps

Q: Where are you currently working and how long have you been managing volunteers?

A: I work as a Program Associate at Coaching Corps. My main responsibilities include: Managing all Southern California volunteers, recruitment of volunteers, managing salesforce for SoCal, and generating reports to inform strategies. I’ve personally worked with volunteers for quite some time now. As a student in college I lead a couple of volunteer trips and I worked with volunteers throughout a year of service in Mandeville, Jamaica from 2010 to 2011. Working with Coaching Corps puts my experience with volunteers to the forefront of my work. At Coaching Corps, we partner with sports programs in low-income communities by providing them with trained, volunteer coaches. We offer the same training to our partners to train volunteer coaches they recruit on their own. Our comprehensive training outlines strategies for working with youth, setting up practices, and implementing youth development principles throughout coaching.

Q: How were you introduced to DOVIA-LA and what do you enjoy about the group?

A: We heard about DOVIA through an e-mail and we’ve enjoyed the discussions we’ve had with our contemporaries. I personally enjoy hearing about the successes and challenges that other volunteer organizations in the Los Angeles area experience and learning from them.

Q: Will you share a memorable volunteer story?

A: I recently spoke to one of our volunteers who coached a young basketball team. When he first took over the team, many of the players weren’t sure what they were doing and, as a result, they lost their first four games. Despite losing, he was witnessing improvement from all of his players. After that fourth loss, his team did not lose again until the championship game! His enthusiasm, excitement, and pride radiated through the phone. He was so proud of the way his team never gave up, practiced their skills, and turned their season around. He immediately committed to coaching the next basketball season as he hopes to see his team win the championship!

Q: Do you have any tips for volunteer managers?

 A: I take time to get to know our volunteers and hear their stories. I think this ultimately helps create the personal relationships I have with many of our coaches which makes my work much easier.

Q: Do you have any hobbies that help you maintain work/life balance?

A: I love sports. When I’m not working I’m either off playing soccer, basketball, volleyball, or tennis. I also love to coach and hope to find some time this summer or fall to pick up a youth sports team.