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Alpine Officials

Alpine Officials

Alpine officials ensure that U.S. Ski & Snowboard competitions run efficiently and fairly by the rules. They are responsible for the safe conduct of the event and the accurate timing, judging, and scoring. They also play a key role in ensuring that the spirit of the sport and competition is maintained.

In the end, officials are responsible for providing the best possible experience for U.S. Ski & Snowboard athletes.

Certification Program

A comprehensive certification program has been developed by the U.S. Ski & Snowboard Alpine Officials Working Group and is in place on a nationwide basis. The program recognizes officials at six different levels and in a variety of categories or specialty areas.

The program is handled on a divisional basis according to nationally established guidelines, with certification at Level 4 based on divisional nomination and national AO Working Group approval. FIS technical delegates are certified only by FIS after national federation nomination and successful completion of the FIS examination and training program.

New officials, without certification credentials, but with U.S. Ski & Snowboard AO membership, will appear on the roster with no designation.

A U.S. Ski & Snowboard alpine official membership does not assume certification. Rosters of officials are available through the alpine department at U.S. Ski & Snowboard and at Rosters are managed by Divisional Chairs and submitted to U.S. Ski & Snowboard for an update in the database.

Certification Levels

The Alpine Officials Working Group has reviewed and modified the criteria for Alpine Officials advancement. The Certification Matrix outlines the steps necessary to advance as an Alpine Official. The criteria is competency based and can be found below.

U.S. Ski & Snowboard Alpine Officials who are certified as Technical Delegate, Referee, Jury Adviser, Chief of Race, Chief of Course, Race Administration and Timing and Calculations are required to attend an update/clinic at least every two years to maintain certification.

  • If an official has missed an update for two years, he or she may be reinstated to the previous level by attending a recognized update.
  • If an official has missed an update for three or more years, he or she may be reinstated by passing the appropriate examination, i.e. Level 1 or 2 must pass the Level 1 exam, Level 3 or 4 must pass the level 3 exam.
  • An official may not violate the update rule for the second time and maintain certification.
Specialty Areas

Officials are recognized in eight specialty areas, reflecting different responsibilities, abilities, and experience:

  • Technical Delegate - TD
  • Referee - RF
  • Chief of Race - CR
  • Chief of Course - CC
  • Chief of Timing and Calculations - TC
  • Race Administrator - RA
  • Jury Advisor - JA (for Start and Finish Referees)
  • Competition Official - CO

A complete description of each of these specialty areas can be found in the U.S. Ski & Snowboard Alpine Competition Regulations (ACR) and the FIS ICR.

Some divisions may not recognize all categories at all levels, according to their own needs and circumstances. All officials should attend annual refresher clinic and work at least four days per year at U.S. Ski & Snowboard sanctioned events.

Clinic Program

A variety of clinics for alpine officials are held annually in each geographic division of U.S. Ski & Snowboard. Clinics range from those designed as a mandatory refresher for FIS-certified technical delegates and other senior officials to introductory sessions for those officials with little or no experience. Topics may include timing and calculation, rules, gate judging, course preparation, paperwork and the race secretariat, press relations and data management. There is an emphasis on fairness, competitor protection and respect for the rules in all courses. Attendance at recognized clinics may be required for certification and for maintaining certification. Certification exams are offered at many clinics, according to divisional needs; exams are generally ‘open-book’ but must be taken at a clinic. Retesting of a failed Alpine Officials exam may only occur after a revision of the applicable exam become available. Exams shall be revised annually.

Clinics are held every Fall before the season begins. For the most current official's clinic information, please see the divisional links below.

Western Region

Rocky/Central Region

Eastern Region

Alpine Officials Certification Contacts

U.S. Ski & Snowboard Alpine Officials levels are tracked by a dedicated group of volunteers around the country. Those volunteers then forward the information on each individual's levels to the national office for uploading into the U.S. Ski & Snowboard database. If you have questions on your levels, you should contact these volunteers and they will then contact U.S. Ski & Snowboard if a change needs to be made.

State or Division Contact Name Email Website
Eastern Region      
Maine - MARA Ken Corrock
New Hampshire - NHARA Mike Cosman
New Jersey - NJSRA Rich Howes
New York - NYSSRA Dirk Gouwens
Pennsylvania - PARA Rob Lipton
Southern - SARA (VA, WV, NC, TN) Gunther Jochl
Tri-State - Tri-State (MA, CT, RI) John Higgins
Vermont - VARA Dave Iverson
Rocky/Central Region      
Central Division John Manderfield
Rocky Mountain Division Ken Gay
Western Region      
Alaska Division Brian Hartman
Far West Division Phil GilanFarr
Intermountain Division Steve Schowengerdt
Northern Division Mike Murgatroy
Pacific Northwest Division Claudia Yamamoto

Updates Manuals

View All
Homologation information and files
2019 Alpine Competition Guide
2018-19 Certification Guidelines
Event Management & Timing Software.
Split Second 101 Guide
List of U.S. Ski & Snowboard Athletes on Membership Hold.
Alpine Officials Study Guides

Following are study guides to help you prepare for the various alpine official's certification clinics. Study guides are not a replacement for actual clinic attendance but are provided to enhance your education. These documents have been updated for the 2019 season.

Download all of the study guides as one zip file or download the individual study guides below.

Download a zip file of the miscellaneous study guide forms.  

Download a zip file of the PowerPoint presentations.

Alpine Officials Manual

The U.S. Ski & Snowboard Alpine Officials Education Working Group has assembled a comprehensive manual for alpine officials. This manual is a guide to race organization, the rules, and duties of officials, timing and calculations, and other subject areas important to alpine officials throughout the country.

It is intended to be as thorough as possible with updates and revisions produced as necessary. However, it is not meant to be a step-by-step ‘cookbook’ with definitive procedures for every race situation. 

Download all of the Alpine Officials Manual as one zip file or download the individual study chapters below: