Sports Envoy
Sports Envoy Program

Justin Reiter

Snowboarding

Served as envoy

  • 2015  –  Kyrgyzstan

Justin Reiter is an American snowboard coach and former snowboarder. He is also a ten-time national champion. He won a silver medal in the parallel slalom at the 2013 FIS Snowboarding World and was selected for the 2014 Winter Olympics, where he was the only American male to compete in the parallel slalom and parallel giant slalom. He had 100 starts in the FIS Snowboard World Cup and scored four podium finishes, including a win in Moscow (2015). His win in Moscow made him the first American to win in a parallel competition in a decade.

In 2016 he filed suit against the International Olympic Committee in 2016 to save parallel slalom, which had been dropped from the 2018 Pyeongchang Olympic program. In September 2017 he announced his retirement. Subsequently he took up coaching: among the snowboarders he trains are Michael Trapp, Robby Burns and Ester Ledecká.

Jessica Mendoza

Softball

Served as envoy

  • 2013  –  Nicaragua
  • 2015  –  Panama
  • 2022  –  Colombia

Jessica Mendoza’s softball accomplishments are almost too vast to comprehend: After an incredible career at Stanford where she was a four-time First-Team All-American Outfielder and led the Cardinal to their first ever Women’s College World Series Appearance (she still holds 5 Stanford school records, including batting average & career home runs), Jessica became a member of the U.S. Women’s National Team. From 2001-10, she won both a Gold (Athens, 2004) and Silver (Beijing, 2008) Medal, in addition to being a three-time World Champion (2002, 2006, 2010) and World Cup Champion (2006, 2007, 20

Ruby Rojas

Softball

Served as envoy

  • 2013  –  Nicaragua
  • 2015  –  Venezuela
  • 2015  –  Colombia

• Kinesiology Professor/Head Softball Coach @ Mt. SAC College
• Health and Nutrition Professor at University of Phoenix
• 2008 Olympian-Beijing, China
• 13 year veteran on Venezuelan National Team
• BackSoftball Athlete Ambassador 2008
• Currently pursuing a PhD in Sports Management @ United States Sports Academy
• B.A. in Sociology & Women Studies @ University of Virginia 03’
• M.A. Kinesiology & Physical Education @ Long Beach State 05’

• Coaching Experience
• Head Softball Coach at Mt. SAC 2012-Present
• Assistant Softball Coach at Mt. SAC 2010- 2011
• Previous Head Softball Coach at Orange Coast College 2007-2010
• Assistant Softball Coach at Orange Coast College 2006-2007

International Playing Experience
• 2008 Beijing Olympics- 5th in the World
• Participated in ISF Women’s World Championships 2002, 2006, 2010, 2012 – 5th in the 2010 World Championships
• Participated in ISF Pan American Games 2003, 2007- Silver Medalist
• Participated in ISF Central American Games 2002, 2006, 2010- Gold Medalist
• Participated in ISF Women’s World Cup-2007
• ISF Canada Cup-2002, 2003, 2008, 2009- All Tournament Team, 2012
• Member of the PFX (Professional Fastpitch Xtreme Tour) 2011

Collegiate Experience (University of Virginia 99-03’)
• Easton All-American 2001
• 1st Team All Southeast Region- 2001
• 1st Team All-ACC- 2001-2003
• 1st Team All ACC Tournament Team- 2000 & 2003
• 50th Anniversary All ACC Team- 2003
• ACC Rookie of the Year- 2000
• UVA MVP Award- 2003
• Highest batting average in ACC, .401- 2001
• Top 25 Highest Div. 1 Batting Average in the Nation- 2001

Personal Life
• Originally from Maracay, Venezuela
• Lives in Santa Ana
• Hobbies include salsa dancing, reading, writing and traveling

Eric Hodgson

Volleyball

Served as envoy

  • 2015  –  Philippines
  • 2019  –  Honduras

Eric Hodgson is the Director of Outreach for the Arizona Region of USA Volleyball. He wears many hats as he is also the Coaching Education Director and PR-Marketing Director for the Region. Eric started the Arizona Region’s High Performance Program from its inception until 2012.
Eric also works with Gold Medal Squared doing camps and clinics during the summers. His passion for leading camps and clinics has taken him to several countries including Canada, Sweden, Germany, and the Netherlands. Eric has recently been a US Embassy Sports Envoy to the Philippine Islands.

His job as Outreach Director takes him to places where there is no volleyball, including inner city schools and Native American Reservations. Eric also works with PE teachers, clubs and parents to help educate and develop programs to grow the sport.

Dr. Andrea Woodson-Smith

Wheelchair Basketball

Served as envoy

  • 2013  –  China
  • 2015  –  Papua New Guinea
  • 2015  –  Australia
  • 2018  –  Botswana

Dr. Andrea Woodson-Smith is a full professor at North Carolina Central University specializing in adapted physical activity and sports and physical education pedagogy. She earned her PhD from Texas Woman’s University specializing in adapted physical education, MS from North Carolina Central University specializing in adapted physical education and a BS from James Madison University, Kinesiology where she also competed as a Division I women’s basketball athlete.

She received an invite to try out for the American Basketball League (ABL) and also tried out for the Women’s National Basketball Association (WNBA). She was a volunteer assistant women’s basketball coach for Texas Woman’s University and an Assistant Women’s Basketball Coach for Moraine Valley Community College in Palos Hills, IL, an assistant varsity girls’ basketball coach and JV volleyball coach for East Chapel Hill High School and JV volleyball coach and assistant varsity volleyball coach for Waynesboro High School.

She participated in the 2003 and 2011 ParaPan American Games, 2006 and 2010 and 2012 U.S Paralympic team. She has also participated as the Vice Chair of the Women’s Division, Chair of the Youth Development Committee of the Women’s Division, Committee member of the High Performance Committee and currently member of the ADM and High Performance Committees and serves as a Sports Envoy for the U.S. Department of State.

During her spare time, she is an advocate for colon cancer, children’s cancer and equality for all girls and women in sports and a 7th grade girls Life Group Leader for New Hope Church

Tiffany Roberts-Sahaydak

Soccer

Served as envoy

  • 2006  –  Uganda
  • 2007  –  Philippines
  • 2010  –  Thailand
  • 2011  –  Brazil
  • 2014  –  Brazil
  • 2015  –  Indonesia
  • 2017  –  Belarus
  • 2017  –  Albania
  • 2019  –  Egypt

An Olympic gold medalist, World Cup champion and two-time NCAA champion, Tiffany Roberts Sahaydak was named head women’s soccer coach at UCF in May 2013.

A three-time American Athletic Conference Coach of the Year, Roberts Sahaydak has wasted no time in putting her stamp on UCF’s successful program. Under her guidance, the Knights have earned four NCAA Tournament bids and four American Athletic Conference championships while boasting 11 conference Player of the Year awards and 38 all-league and tournament selections.

In her first season (2013), she led UCF to a school-record unbeaten streak (18 matches), an NSCAA national standing through much of the year and the program’s first undefeated conference season since 1999. In addition, UCF made history as the first program to win an American Athletic Conference Championship.

Roberts Sahaydak came to Orlando after serving six seasons at VCU alongside her co-head coach, husband and current UCF associate head coach Tim Sahaydak.

Roberts Sahaydak spent a decade with the U.S. National Team from 1994-2004, earning 112 caps (with 60 starts). Her career was highlighted by three women’s World Cups – among them, the unforgettable 1999 championship – and a gold medal with the 1996 Olympic team.

After retiring from the USWNT, she has served as an ambassador for U.S. Soccer with the U.S. Department of State Sports Envoy Program since 2007, promoting the power and benefit of sport internationally. With the program, she has visited Indonesia, Uganda, the Philippines, Thailand, Namibia, Brazil and France. In 2014, she was appointed to President Barack Obama’s Presidential Delegation to the Federative Republic of Brazil at the opening of the FIFA World Cup in Brazil. She is a native of San Ramon, Calif., and was selected as the 1994 California High School Player of the Year.

She was a three-time Parade High School All-American, a three-time NSCAA All-American and was the two-time National Girl’s High School Player of the Year. She debuted for the Stars and Stripes in 1994 when she was only 16 as one of the youngest players ever to suit up for the National Team. She played in her first FIFA Women’s World Cup a month after her 18th birthday and won Olympic gold before she was out of her teens (USSoccer.com).

As a collegian, Roberts Sahaydak was a standout midfielder for North Carolina (1995-98) as a three-time All-ACC First Team selection. She led the Tar Heels to two NCAA titles (1996, 1997) during her tenure, was voted the 1998 ACC Tournament MVP and finished third in voting for collegiate soccer’s highest honor, the Hermann Trophy.

She still ranks among the top five for career starts in UNC’s record book.She was a two-time captain for the Carolina Courage in the first fully professional U.S. women’s league (Women’s United Soccer Association). She helped the Courage win the 2002 title after finishing last in the team’s inaugural campaign one year prior.

Roberts Sahaydak took over VCU’s program in 2007 and led the Rams to three conference championship game appearances. She was voted as the 2011 Colonial Athletic Association Co-Head Coach of the Year, along with her husband Tim. The duo mentored two CAA Defenders of the Year, one CAA Rookie of the Year and 20 all-conference players, including six first-team honorees.The Sahaydaks reside in Orlando with their two daughters, Layla and Evie.

“It’s been a life changing experience being involved in the Sports Diplomacy Envoys. I have had the good fortune of participating in programs all over the globe, and I’ve worked together with people from diverse backgrounds and cultures. I am constantly reminded that sport can bring us closer together. We can celebrate our differences and our common interests. Every time we start to play a game we start to connect and the world seems to get a bit smaller.”

Mary Harvey

Soccer

Served as envoy

  • 2013  –  Iraq
  • 2014  –  Jordan
  • 2015  –  Canada
  • 2015  –  Jordan
  • 2015  –  Egypt
  • 2016  –  Jordan

Mary Harvey is an accomplished and innovative sports development and governance executive with 10+ years leading initiatives to achieve societal change through sports. Mary’s initiatives have been launched and implemented around the world through a variety of organizations, having sustained impact in the empowerment of girls and women, inclusion of marginalized groups, stewardship of the environment and achievement of health and educational objectives.

Mary has served as a sport envoy for the US State Department’s SportsUnited on several occasions, including missions to Iraq in 2013 and Jordan in 2014. On both missions, the key objective was engaging key stakeholders via sport outreach to promote the inclusion and value of women and girls and to promote acceptance and integration of diverse ethnic groups.

A lifelong athlete, Mary enjoyed an 8-year career with the US Women’s National Soccer Team, winning the inaugural FIFA Women’s World Cup in 1991 and Olympic Gold in 1996. Mary appeared, with her teammates, in the HBO sports documentary, “Dare to Dream”. Mary holds an MBA from the Anderson School at UCLA and a BS from UC Berkeley.

Joanna Lohman

Soccer

Served as envoy

  • 2015  –  Argentina
  • 2015  –  Thailand
  • 2016  –  Botswana
  • 2017  –  Ivory Coast
  • 2018  –  Niger
  • 2019  –  Nigeria
  • 2021  –  Portugal
  • 2022  –  Germany

Joanna Lohman is a keynote speaker and performance coach. She is a former professional soccer player and member of the United States Women’s National Team. She is the first player in Washington Spirit history to have her jersey retired, honoring her 16-year playing career where she built a platform for social impact. She is the author of, Raising Tomorrow’s Champions, and an authenticity activator. She continues her influence as a Sport Diplomat and global leader who has shared her message with organizations all over the world, including: The Minnesota Vikings, The Human Rights Campaign, Chamber of Commerce Foundation, Qualcomm, Lifetime Television, Sanofi, American Staffing Association, McDonalds, CNN and universities all over the country.

Lori Lindsey

Soccer

Served as envoy

  • 2015  –  Canada
  • 2015  –  Egypt
  • 2015  –  Jordan
  • 2016  –  New Zealand
  • 2016  –  Venezuela
  • 2016  –  Samoa
  • 2017  –  Colombia

Lori Lindsey played at the University of Virginia (UVA) from 1998-2001 and was the school’s first-ever Atlantic Coast Conference Player of the Year, winning the award two consecutive years (2000, 2001) joining North Carolina’s Mia Hamm as the only other player to achieve that distinction. She finished as the sixth all-time scorer in UVA history with 33 goals and 76 points, NSCAA Second-Team All-American in 2001, and third-Team All-American in 2000. She was also a 2001 finalist for the Mid Atlantic Conference Award and named Female Athlete of the Year at UVA for the 2001-02 academic year.

Lori Lindsey broke into the National Team relatively late in her career but was a consistent call-up from 2009 to 2012. Lori Lindsey made her first appearance on the National Team in July 24, 2005, vs. Iceland. She was called into WNT training camps on the strength of her WPS performance in 2009 but did not appear in a match. Her best and most active year for the USA was in 2010, playing in 13 matches while starting six and upping her career cap total to 14. In 2011 Lori played in 10 games, starting three, and made her first Women’s World Cup team, playing in one match in Germany, starting and playing the entire 90 minutes in the USA’s second group match, with a victory over Colombia. Finally in, 2012 she played in six matches, starting two, and scored her first career national team goal against Guatemala – on a header – at the Olympic qualifying tournament in Vancouver, Canada. She was named as an alternate to the 2012 Olympic Team and traveled with the squad to the U.K

Through the Women’s Professional Soccer League, she played for the Washington Spirit and with Canberra United in Australia. She was the captain of the Washington Spirit in 2013. In the years prior to playing for the Washington Spirit and Canberra United, she also played for the Western New York Flash in the WPSL-Elite and the Philadelphia Independence. Lori was the first player taken in the 2010 Women’s Professional Soccer (WPS) Expansion Draft by the Independence and that year she was named to the WPS Best XI and was also named to the WPS All-Star Team.

Nate Doss

Disc Golf

Served as envoy

  • 2015  –  Russia

Nate Doss first played disc golf when he was seven years old, and by the time he was eleven, he was hooked. In 1998, at the age of thirteen, Nate was invited to the Amateur World Championships and finished seventh in the Juniors under 16 division. Two years later, he turned pro. In 2008, he won the most prestigious disc golf tournament of the year, the United States Disc Golf Championship. Nate is currently the second ranked disc golfer in the world and has won three world championships (2005, 2007, 2011). With his win in 2011, Nate became only the second person with three world championships.