By Randy Vogt, Director of Public Relations, Eastern New York Youth Soccer Association
May 10, 2018-Although April showers bring May flowers, this spring in New York it was the combination of April snow showers and rain showers bringing May flowers. Now that spring has sprung across the Empire State, it’s appropriate that the Eastern New York Youth Soccer Association (ENYYSA) honors a longtime volunteer named Bloom as our Personality of the Month for May.
This is the second recent award for Neil Bloom as he was honored as the Oceanside United Volunteer of the Year at the Long Island Junior Soccer League (LIJSL) Convention on March 9.
Neil grew up playing hockey but became deeply involved in soccer volunteering a dozen years ago.
“When my oldest daughter Soli was six years old, we drove by Boardman Middle School one day and saw all the kids playing soccer in the Oceanside United intramural program, and she wanted in,” Neil explained. “I knew very little of the game before that and did not even watch much soccer. My only real exposure to the game was in 7th grade when my school needed players to fill the team I played on, and in camp, where all the European-born counselors made us play soccer. I have since developed a love for the game on all levels from intramurals to professional.”
Neil became an assistant coach for Soli’s intramural team right away, and the next year, middle daughter Jillian started playing.
“From that point on, I was head coach or assistant coach of their teams going forward, to present day. Three years later, my youngest daughter Felice started playing and same thing, I coached or assisted every year she played,” Neil continued. “Soli and Jillian went on to play travel soccer and I was the head coach of the Oceanside Breakers and assistant coach of the Oceanside Tigersharks and Oceanside Riptide, which I still am to this day. Riptide are playing in their final LIJSL season this spring.”
It was a very quick climb up the volunteer ladder at Oceanside United as he has been a division coordinator, girls intramural director, assistant registrar, registrar, assistant tournament director and then tournament director for the past seven years. In this capacity, Neil leads both the Rudy Lamonica Indoor Tournament, the oldest youth indoor soccer tournament in the United States which celebrated its 51st anniversary this past winter, and the Bob Schrager Labor Day Weekend Tournament. Oceanside United has written that Neil’s “tireless work, attention to detail, networking with other clubs and ability to motivate and encourage volunteers to step up and assist with these tournaments makes them successful every year.”
And if that was not enough, the longtime Oceanside resident has served as Oceanside United’s Vice President for the past eight years, Second VP under President Steve Padaetz and First VP under Presidents Mike Meagher and Mike O’Malley. And all this volunteering is in addition to Neil’s “real job” as a Senior Attorney who practices in the area of commercial litigation with a focus on the construction industry at Shanker Law Group in Mineola.
“Neil is not only a dedicated father and volunteer but goes above and beyond whenever needed,” stated Oceanside United President Mike O’Malley. “He is always among the first to step up and lend a hand, and at same time is among the last to leave. Oceanside United is incredibly lucky to have a volunteer like Neil.”
Congratulations to Neil Bloom, Eastern New York’s Personality of the Month for May.
With over 100,000 youth soccer players––both boys and girls––and more than 25,000 volunteers, the non-profit Eastern New York Youth Soccer Association (ENYYSA) stretches from Montauk Point, Long Island to the Canadian border. Members are affiliated with 11 leagues throughout the association, which covers the entire state of New York east of Route 81. ENYYSA exists to promote and enhance the game of soccer for children and teenagers between the ages of 5 and 19 years old, and to encourage the healthy development of youth players, coaches, referees and administrators. All levels of soccer are offered––from intramural, travel team and premier players as well as Children With Special Needs. No child who wants to play soccer is turned away. ENYYSA is a proud member of the United States Soccer Federation and United States Youth Soccer Association. For more information, please log on to http://www.enysoccer.com/, which receives nearly 300,000 hits annually from the growing soccer community.