MTFOA updates

(Patrick Bendzick photos/

Linda George named MIAA Official of the Year

posted Jun 16, 2020, 9:00 AM by Paul Williams

MTFOA veteran Linda George has been selected as the 2019-2020 MIAA Outdoor Track and Field Official of the Year, according to MIAA Associate Executive Director Richard L. Pearson.

“Please accept my heartfelt congratulations!  Having been selected for this award among multiple candidates, you stood out based on your excellent character, positive impact upon students and officiating credentials. It is with pride we will honor you as a representative of this vitally important aspect of athletic competition. On behalf of MIAA student athletes, school administrators and parents, we thank you for representing all officials in your sport,” Pearson wrote in a congratulatory letter to Linda.

“Although the COVID pandemic slowed everyone down during this past spring, forcing us to cancel our annual MIAA Game Official of the Year Banquet, we still selected a worthy official for each of our sports,” Pearson wrote. “Congratulations again for this most deserving and prestigious honor.”
The Official of the Year Award will be presented to Linda on a date in the fall of 2020.  

Email blast for 6-10-20

posted Jun 15, 2020, 8:48 AM by Paul Williams


1, May 20 Executive board Meeting

2. Form the final for the boy's Shot Put.      Solution

This is the last work sheet for the spring season. I guess we'll take a break for the summer and start up again in the fall.


Email blast for 5-31-20: Marathon update

posted May 31, 2020, 9:48 AM by Paul Williams


Peter and I, as the MTFOA designated representatives to the BAA, were just as surprised as you were when the BAA 124th Marathon cancellation announcement was made last Thursday. Given the health conditions in which we currently live, we were NOT SURPRISED it was canceled but only by the timing. We join with you, all the participants and others directly and indirectly involved from both here and far and wide in expressing deep disappointment.

For those MTFOA Officials assigned for the 124th, very sorry for all of us. Thank you for committing to your involvement. After many, many hours of planning and countess meetings, you can be assured that MTFOA  was ready to and would “represent” in April, September or when ever the 124th was conducted. Now that the race will be conducted virtually in 2020, MTFOA has no role.

Some questions have already come our way.

Will MTFOA be involved in any way with the Virtual Race? Not at this time and not expected.

What about the 125th next year? Too early to say but expect many changes given the “new normal’ that we can all expect. Social distancing, face masks, hygiene precautions, etc. are not going away.

Will the number of Officials, roles and assignments change? See previous question and response.
Reminder: Renew your USATF certification as an Official. Add LDR-Long Distance Running.

What about the 2020 Officials’ jackets and other race swag? Good question as there is a lot of dated labelled materials in the BAA warehouse.  Who knows? You can be sure that, as we always do, Peter and I will be looking out for the best interests of all MTFOA members.

What next? Peter and I have a previously scheduled Organizing Committee zoom conference call on 6/17. We will continue to keep you informed of what we know. However, we do expect more surprises.


Peter Meagher
Chris Lane         

II.  Form up the final of the boy's Triple Jump.

I have three different stages of work sheets. The first stage is forming up a final after the preliminaries. (solution).  The second stage is scoring the event after the final. And finally the third stage will have completed results with an error for the official to try and catch before submitting to the referee. The third stage might be more interesting to the veteran official. 

Brian Moody

Email blast for 5-25-20

posted May 26, 2020, 8:42 AM by Paul Williams


This weeks training material: 
Form the final for Boys Long Jump.  (click to see preliminary score sheet)
Click HERE to see how you did  
(All of the tests/answers can be found here on

 This is in Saturday's paper. kind of FYI.

Senior member Bill MacKinnon passes

posted May 18, 2020, 8:20 AM by Paul Williams

MTFOA regrets to inform you of the passing of Bill MacKinnon, a Senior-Life Member of the MTFOA.  As an official Bill could always be counted on to give his very best to every officiating assignment. Our condolences are offered to his family and friends.

William L. “Bill” MacKinnon, Sr. age 87 of Brockton died May 6, 2020 at his home under the care of his family and hospice. He was the loving husband of Carol A. (Draheim) MacKinnon for 64 years. Born in Boston and raised in Quincy, he had lived in Brockton for the last 58 years. 

Bill was a 1959 graduate of Boston College and received his Master’s in Education Degree from Lesley College. He had been a social studies teacher at Silver Lake High School for 35 years and was also the track coach at Silver Lake, Brockton High School and Bridgewater State College. His involvement in track enabled him to be a timer at the Boston Marathon, the Olympics in Atlanta and the Pan Am games in Indiana. 

Bill loved to be outdoors, camping and fishing. He will be remembered as a mentally strong man, hard worker and provider for his family. 

Bill was the father of William MacKinnon, Jr. and his wife Barbara of Bridgewater, Paul MacKinnon and his wife Susan of Charlton, MA; James MacKinnon and his wife Elizabeth of Marlboro, Gail Fiandaca and her husband Charles of Holbrook, Henry MacKinnon and his wife Jennifer of Fitchburg and Frederick MacKinnon and his wife Gail of Lakeville. He also leaves 14 grandchildren and 3 great grandchildren. 

Burial will be held at a later date at the Mass National Cemetery in Bourne. 

In lieu of flowers, donations in Bill’s name can be made to Myricks United Methodists Church of Berkeley, 93 Myricks Street, Berkley, MA 02779. 

Email blast for 5-5-20: More on PUA benefits

posted May 6, 2020, 8:51 AM by Paul Williams   [ updated May 6, 2020, 8:51 AM ]


I. As a result of the Blast last week, I have had several conversations with other officials regarding the availability of Pandemic Unemployment Act  (PUA) benefits. The questions obviously came up among many officials, particularly those with other 1099, W-2  or pension income, as to whether or not they would qualify for such benefits as a result of the loss of the Collegiate and High School track seasons. I am referring to the benefits recently made available to part time, 1099 and "gig" workers affected by the COVID-19 Pandemic. 

I have heard of officials who have applied and have been successful in receiving benefits. This would on the surface appear to be contrary to the initial information I received that any W-2 income or pension income would prohibit receipt of benefits under the PUI. 

Some friends of mine from the music world who knew I was interested in this issue have shared with me a chart distributed by the Boston Musicians Association. Under that chart those who receive either or both W-2 and 1099 income or those who just receive 1099 income, that are affected by the COVID-19 shut down should apply benefits under either normal unemployment or the recently enacted PUA. While I have NOT verified the validity of that information, it does seem more liberal than the original understanding. 

The bottom line is that everyone's circumstances are different and if there are any questions each member should check out the information on the web including the items below and check out the application on their own.

Please include this letter or reference to this  letter n the BLAST this weekend. 

Thank you 

Dennis Berry
Recording Secretary

  This material is shared for informational purposes and not as professional "advice" from someone such as an accountant, attorney, financial planner or banking institution. This material should not be considered definitive, comprehensive or in any way a legal opinion by Dennis Berry, nor does it constitute any direction from the Mass. Track and Field Officials Association. No one should rely on the information provided as a full discussion of unemployment law in general, the CARES act or the Pandemic Unemployment Act. All information provided is as part of general discussion and does not create any attorney-client relationship in any way with any individual or any organization. Any persons using or reacting to the information provided does so at their own risk. All persons are encouraged to pursue further information through the Commonwealth of Mass. and to make application for any possible benefits they may feel due. 

II. Folks,
   This weeks training material.  The high jump official has turned the results into the referee. But there's an error. (click to see score sheet) As Referee find the error!!!    Click HERE for solution

Email blast for 4-26-20

posted Apr 28, 2020, 9:16 AM by Paul Williams


1. With the 2020 spring track and field season canceled due to coronavirus and resulting school closures, some MTFOA members may have wondered if they qualify for pandemic unemployment assistance. (click link)

2. Best practices, resources, training reorganized on website

The aids on to keep new and veteran officials well trained have been re-organized and updated to better serve our members.

Files for best practices, resources and training ( have been placed into seven categories to make information easy to find. The links have also been placed higher on the home page sidebar to improve visibility and access.

Updates include links to training videos, thanks to Brian Moody. Brian has also provided self-testing exams and answer sheets on a separate page. James McGloin shares his experience on how best to officiate the combined events in Best Practices.

3. This weeks training effort. The final of the men's long jump is over.
Now score the event and turn results into the referee for review.
see how you did

Email blast for 4-13-20

posted Apr 13, 2020, 1:36 PM by Paul Williams   [ updated Apr 13, 2020, 1:36 PM ]


President's note:
Greetings folks and I hope you and your families are healthy and well.

I just wanted you to know that the MTFOA e-board has been proactive during this crisis and have been seeking information from various sources and entities. We convened during a conference call on 4/3/20 and the minutes from that conference call will be available on our MTFOA website shortly.

Call or email me if you have any questions or concerns...

Stay safe!

Steven R. Keyes


Massachusetts Track & Field Officials Association

Executive Board Telephone Conference



April 4, 2020


Officers Present

Steven Keyes, President

Mark Young, Vice President

Donald Kirkland, Secretary-Treasurer

Members Present:

Anne Bernazzani

Kathleen Doherty

Steve Knapp

Peter Meagher


Staff Present


Dennis Berry Recording Secretary

Fred Doyle Equipment Manager

Brian Moody New Member Testing


Note: Due to technical difficulties several members and staff attempted but were unable to connect to the conference, including: Members: Tony DaRocha, Irwin Cohen, Linda George, Deems Hatch, and David Johns; and Staff: Michael Meagher, Jacob Johns and Paul Williams


MTFOA President Steven Keys called the telephone meeting to order at 7:23 PM. He noted those members and staff who are on the phone as well as those who had tried but were unable to connect.


1. The President acknowledged the cancellation of the general meeting in December due to weather difficulties and the general meeting in March due to the COVID-19 state of emergency. He indicated that he would propose a revised meeting for this September as part of his report


2 The President touched on several items as part of his report


(A) He noted one member who may have come down with the virus but from all indications is doing well at this point.


(B) the President discussed at length his conversations with Rick Kates, Executive Director of the MSTCA, regarding the potential for a 2020 spring season. While emphasizing that it was all hypothetical depending on the return to school and the MIAA, there is some possibility of salvaging a spring season. He outlined the hypothetical dates for divisional and state meets as well as regular invitationals and the freshman /sophomore meet. He also noted that Mr.

Kates was appreciative of the officiating in the winter season and wanted to make sure that all officials would be comfortable if in fact a spring season does take place.


(C) He noted follow up from personnel matters at the last meeting that a letter has been sent to one member. In addition, he has spoken directly to the other member who will be following up with the affected coach and will address his matter that way.


(D) In partial response to the cancellation of the December and March clinics he proposed an all-day clinic on Saturday September 19th at the Bolling building In Boston which he has secured for free. He suggested that this will take further discussion but wanted to secure the facility and propose the date for a full day Clinic. It was suggested that the League assigners would a good source to promote participation in this event.


(E) He discussed conversations he has had with several coaches regarding officiating during the Winter season. No action was requested or taken.


3. Vice President Mark Young spoke briefly concerning the banquet, which is tentatively scheduled for Thursday June 7th, at the Old Colony Yacht Club. However, it is doubtful under the current circumstances that the banquet and meeting will take place at that time. After much discussion it was determine that the date and location will be held but that Mr. Young will explorer with Irwin Cohen the possibility of securing a September date as a backup.


4. Recording Secretary Dennis Berry presented the minutes of the meetings of November 14th and the regular session of February 27th. The November minutes had not been accepted at the previous meeting.


After brief discussion both the Minutes of the Meeting of November 14th and the Minutes of the Regular Session of the Meeting of February 27th were approved by acclamation without vote.


5. Secretary-Treasurer Don Kirkland presented his report based on financial statements distributed prior to the meeting. He indicated that there are currently 260 paid members. While that number is usually increased at the March meeting, that increase will not likely happen this year. Mr. Kirkland discussed an issue regarding billing of collegiate clients. It was pointed out that we generally do not have contracts with many of these clients. When rates were increased recently to $125 for the first 4 hours, there was a lack of communication of the new rates which has led to some backlash. On other matters, there were several questions and discussion regarding the financial statements to which Mr. Kirkland responded.


At the conclusion of the Treasurer’s report it was MOVED by Mr. Young and seconded by Ms Doherty


That the Report of the Treasure be accepted as presented.


The motion was unanimously adopted.


6. The President noted that the Commissioner and the Assistant Commissioner were among those who had attempted but were not able to join the conference for technical reasons. Therefore, there be no commissioner’s report.


7. The President requested committee reports. The only report was from Brian Moody regarding new member testing. He noted that he was down to 10 rulebooks for the remainder of the year, but he did not think that was a problem as it is unlikely to be many applications due to the status of the spring season. As part of his report there was significant discussion concerning training and clinics that must be attended by new members and Mr. Moody expressed concern that there were not enough practical mentoring sessions and meets for many new officials. It was suggested without action that at least ten members be identified who are willing to provide practical meet related training to new members. In addition, the President noted that it hoped the proposed day-long clinic would address some of these concerns.


8. The President requested Old Business; none was suggested.


9. Two items were discussed under new business:


(A) Several training videos have been identified by Brian Moody and they have been placed on the MTFOA website. It was suggested that the weekly blast reference these videos for general recognition.


(B) The President referenced the member survey which had been identified by Assistant Commissioner Jacob Johns, the link for which had been distributed electronically. the potential use of this survey was discussed. It was felt that at a future meeting there needed to be further discussion regarding the distribution and use of this survey.


The President closed meeting by thanking those present and noting that the scheduled meeting for May 20th will go forward at this time although it is unclear whether it will be electronic or in person depending on relevant health conditions.


There being no further business before the meeting, the meeting was adjourned at 8:24 p.m.


Respectfully Submitted:

Dennis J. Berry

Recording Secretary


Post Meeting Note: Irwin Cohen, among those who attempted but was unable to get into the conference, sent an e-mail suggesting an evaluation system for officials that would be completed by Referees at meets. This will be discussed at a future meeting

Email blast for 4-6-20

posted Apr 9, 2020, 9:45 AM by Paul Williams

We did not go away the last two weeks. Truth be told there was nothing definitive to to send out.
The NCAA has canceled the spring 2020 outdoor season. The MIAA had a conference call. Click for their minutes
Hoping that you and all yours are safe.

Training videos on
A number of training videos have been added to our website,, thanks to Brian Moody and Chris Lane. These would be especially useful to new officials, and would serve as refreshers for experienced officials. They cover topics such as jumps, relay exchange, and measuring, as well as some general general topics such as officiating best practices, cardiac and concussion awareness, and heat illness. The videos can be found at You can also access them from the home page sidebar at Membership>Training videos.

 Measuring at the Circle
> Judging the Relay Exchange
> Determining Places in the Vertical Jumping Events
> Venue Setup: The High Jump
> High Jump Rules Explained
> Judging Flats
> Track and Field Officiating, at it's finest (sarcasm, bad official)
> Official Suffers Painful Death After Track Crossing Snafu - Track and Field (Sound Warning)

Email blast for 3-16-20

posted Mar 16, 2020, 9:11 AM by Paul Williams

I Spring WILL BE LATE this year. Just not sure how late.
  • MTFOA Spring Availability Sheet <=====Click link is now available.  Availability Sheet was updated just minutes ago. It goes without saying, there WILL be changes and updates as you would expect. Anything hi-lighted in red  has been either canceled, postponed etc. I have tried to indicate as such.  
 If you need anything for the upcoming Spring Track/Road Race season please send me an email -
Since I will be gone from March 3-22 please plan accordingly. Nothing will be delivered or shipped during this time. Will do my best to get all orders out the week of March 23rd.

III President's Note
 Greetings folks,

In response to the Covid-19 and current events, I felt there should be some statement from me to our MTFOA membership and associates.

First of all, best of health to you and your families and please stay safe. I'm sure you have received messaging from your financial institutions, community organizations, workplaces, etc. about measures to protect against Covid-19. I hope everyone continues to follow guidelines from the CDC, WHO and other reputable medical organizations. Personally, I don't get caught up in the media hype - you shouldn't too.

Secondly, I don't have to tell you about the cancellations of collegiate Spring sports by now and the effects that it will have on our sport of Track & Field. I'm sure the MIAA will have more to say about High School Spring sports and contests, but let's wait to hear what they have to report.

Meanwhile, I'm asking all assignors (which includes me) to keep Track & Field officials informed of what contests will be canceled or postponed. Right now that would apply to more high school and middle school meets. I'm also asking our commissioner and assistant commissioner of officials Mike Meagher and Jacob Johns to rewrite or update the Spring availability sheet to reflect changes and cancellations.

Updates and dialogue regarding the BAA Boston Marathon will come from Chris Lane only. The same applies to local NEUSATF information from Steve Vaitones. These gentlemen are our best sources for more accurate information as it pertains to those organizations respectively.

Lastly, I know we haven't had the best luck of holding general meetings (December & March) and had to cancel due to unavoidable circumstances. I’m hoping we will see a good amount of you at the June 11, 2020 banquet/meeting. I will be asking our e-board to have a special executive board meeting earlier than the one scheduled for May, 2020. In the interim, please contact Don Kirkland about dues, rule books, name tags, etc. Please contact Fred Doyle about MTFOA gear. Call or email me if you have any further questions or concerns.

Once again, please stay safe out there and best of health to you and your love ones. Peace.

Steven R. Keyes
MTFOA, President

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