As we approach the 2013 season, I am pleased to share with you our 2012 USSA Annual Report, documenting the USSA's accomplishments of last season and providing an overview of our athletic programs moving forward.
As an Olympic sports organization, the USSA has a great passion for our American athletes. Our organization has long been guided by a Best in the World vision, providing an opportunity for young athletes to chase their Olympic dreams. Since Ted Ligety and Lindsey Vonn opened the 2012 season with wins in Soelden, each weekend athletes across every sport found their way to the top with World Cup, Grand Prix or X Games wins in every USSA sport. 10 U.S. Athletes took home 14 season long titles!
At the same time, we have made dramatic changes to our domestic programs to ensure that our 425 USSA affiliate clubs have the tools necessary to help athletes pursue those Olympic dreams. With a renewed focus on sport development and talent-ID programs, our commitment to building a strong pipeline is top of mind. Through mandating coach certification at the grassroots levels and the introduction of the new Club Development Program and SkillsQuest, we are inherently invested in the systematic development of the next generation of elite athletes.
Our new USSA athletic program and brand, U.S. Freeskiing, has been a tremendous success. U.S. Freeskiing athletes have long only hoped to be a part of the Olympic Winter Games. They have proven through a season of immense success that there is tremendous medal potential in 2014.
Our pursuit of greatness is not just achieved on the hill. Through innovative infrastructure projects like the U.S. Ski Team Speed Center at Copper and the new USSA TEAM Academy we are taking a strong look at future success.
The U.S. Ski Team Speed Center at Copper was a game-changing opportunity, emerging after over a decade of planning and teamwork that benefits elite athletes and domestic clubs.
We also finalized plans for the USSA TEAM Academy, which opened its doors this August. With the expanding number of high school aged national team athletes, we have a growing need to help them with a unique educational solution that maintains athletics as its core. With a focus of advancement in athletics, this innovative program will significantly enhance our efforts to establish an educational pipeline for each of our athletes that is fully integrated with, and effectively facilitates, our athlete development pipeline.
The ongoing success of our organization is greatly attributed to your continued support. We are also fortunate to have strong leadership on our boards, including USSA Chairman Dexter Paine and U.S. Ski and Snowboard Team Foundation President John Cumming.
Thank you for making 2012 a Best in the World season. We need to continue this momentum together into the future to provide every athlete with the opportunity to achieve greatness.
Bill Marolt President and CEO U.S. Ski and Snowboard Association