Squash is an inherently challenging game with important rules that can affect match outcomes. The presence of qualified referees enhances safety and produces fairer outcomes. The ongoing development of players’ comfort in their own refereeing ability, as well as the provision of top level referees, are both critical parts of the long term growth of the sport.
US Squash Referee Certification is competency-based and requires continuing education and assessment at each level. There are four levels of referee certification – Club, District, Regional, and National.
Certification is the process used to specify an official’s level of technical competence. To become a certified referee, the first step is completing an online Club Referee Exam, and in the case of junior players, attending a free officiating clinic to complete certification at the age-appropriate level.
All US Squash members are encouraged to gain Club Referee certification, the basic level of referee status within the certification levels.
A Club Referee has a sound knowledge and understanding of the rules and their application to situations on the squash court. The Club Referee Certification is also catered to specific ages of officials and the matches which they are officiating.
Adult Certification Requirements:
Adult members who wish to become a certified Club Referee must only pass the Club Referee Exam. Clinics also will be offered in member clubs to adult members and are optional.
Junior Certification Requirements:
For juniors, as a player gets older, his or her knowledge of the game must become more in-depth and therefore the certification exam difficulty increases relative to age and the required knowledge of the rules and officiating increases.
There are four (4) levels of Club Referee for juniors: Club (U13), Club (U15), Club (U17) and full Club Referee for U19. The full Club Referee level also applies to adults.
For a junior player to obtain their age-appropriate Club Referee Certification, he or she must attend a US Squash Officiating Clinic (in-club, at a tournament, or an online clinic for players in areas where clinics are not available on a timely basis) in addition to passing the Club Referee Examination.
Club Referee Examination:
There are four (4) levels of Club Referee Examination for juniors: Club (U13), Club (U15), Club (U17) and full Club Referee for U19. The exams will be available beginning January 1, 2014 directly on current members’ US Squash profiles.
A junior player must re-certify at the appropriate Club Referee level each time he or she ages up in a division. If he or she wishes to obtain a ranking at a higher age division than his or her current division, the player must also re-certify at the higher competency level.
US Squash members who wish to have a junior ranking are required to re-certify at the Club Referee level by October 31, 2014.
A District Referee shows a high level of comfort will all rules of squash and competency when officiating matches. District Referees are able to referee matches at a high level across US Squash leagues and events.
• Pass Club Referee Exam
• Pass District Referee Exam
• Pass an assessment as an official at a US Squash-run tournament or event
A Regional Referee is an official who has demonstrated a high level of competence in knowledge of the rules and officiating at matches across all levels. Regional Referees are capable of officiating PSA and WSA matches as Referee and/or Marker and also as a side-wall referee in events using the 3-referee system, and may also instruct officiating clinics in clubs and tournaments.
• Pass Club and District Referee Exams
• Pass Regional Referee Exam
• Satisfactorily complete officiating assessments at PSA/WSA events on a regular basis
A National Referee is regarded as an official of the highest competence and has proved his or her ability to expertly manage any match from junior to top professionals. National Referees invest time in the assessment process of Regional Referees, officiate at major events throughout the U.S., and participate in referee education through clinics and tournaments.
• Pass Club, District and Regional Referee Exams
• Satisfactorily instruct a Club Referee officiating clinic at a club or US Squash tournament
• Pass online National Officiating Assessment consisting of video clips from professional matches
• Satisfactorily complete officiating assessments at PSA/WSA events on a regular basis
In order to maintain the integrity of the certification program, all levels of US Squash certified referees may periodically be subject to revised re-certification requirements.
Officials certified previously at the State, Regional and National levels are encouraged to contact Richard Wade at email@example.com to determine the best path to certification under the current certification requirements.
This list is to help tournament chairs and tournament referees locate Certified Referees, and also to recognize the achievement of these officiators.
An (A) next to a referee’s name indicates that they are an assessor.
An (I) next to a referee’s name indicates that they are an instructor.
Andrews, Don NY
Barbehenn, Herb NY
Bertram, Mark GA
Bridges, Anne (I)
Burton, Bob GA
Cameron, Leslie (I) CT
Campbell, Ross (I) MD
Cathcart, Steve WA
Chedda, Ashvin TX
Curtis, Harry (I)
Cushman, Frank MD
Darby, Kevin TX
Doucette, Peter MA
Evangelista, Robert NY
Everd, Robert MD
Kim Fjeldsted OR
Frankland, Mark TX
Gaddipati, Sarat TX
Goldstein, Jonathan CT
Graf, Len (I)
Gregg, Steve PA
Grunberg, Carole DC
Hankinson, Richard NJ
Hanley, Claude VA
Hernady, Eric NY
Hogan, Dan MA
Hubbard, Andy TX
Katz, Ken MD
Kelso, Karen (I) CO
Khan, Aub WA
Khan, Azam WA
Khan, Gulmast (I) OR
Khan, Latasha WA
Khan, Shabana WA
Kujawa, Bill GA
Lecomte, David GA
Lovell, Nat MA
Macaulay, Calum TX
Manzur, Arturo (I) MN
Maur, Andre GA
Nicholls, Pat TX
Owen, Mallard (I) VA
Pasman, Jamie MA
Prockop, David MA
Prockop, Hope MA
Rosen, David (I) CO
Rothstein, Ken TX
Ryan, Joseph WA
Sadler, Fred CA
Scruton, David TX
Slater, Reed CA
Slatkin, Avrin NJ
Smith, Owen TX
Van der Merwe, Anton (I)
Wellington, Jim IN
Whitehead, Tim TX
Alikhan, Diniar GA
Bostrum, Bo TX
Burns, Trevor GA
Casey, Robert MN
Cowan, Guy TX
Cranch, Titus (I) PA
Fernando, Gihan TX
Flanigan, John (I) IL
Ford, Aaron CT
Ganoza, Alejandro MD
Gowan, Alastair (I) RI
Grotowski, Steven FL
Hardie, Eben GA
Harris, Julieanne PA
Hunt, Sunny PA
Jensen, Malcolm (I) MD
Lang, Chris RI
Leavy, John TX
Lively, John FL
Macks, Ray (I) NY
Macy, Jordan MA
McQueenie, Jim IN
Munich, Matt MA
Nathani, Mehmood MD
Owen, Chris NV
Owen, Kathryn (I) NV
Roberts, Susan (I) WA
Rumpler, Tom GA
Stillman, Ken (I) TX
Thorpe-Clark, Craig (I) NY
Turley, Paul CA
Villari, William GA
Waters, Dwight TX
Yarrow, Phil (I) IL
Alexander, Paul (A) (I) CA
Alikhan, Rishad (A) (I) TX
Alnaggary, Tammer NJ
Anderson, Sheldon (I) VA
Ansdell, Paul (A) MA
Ansdell, Wendy MA
Burke, Brad NY
Forster, Andy (A) TX
Hanscom, Bob (A) (I) CA
Hodges, O. Wayne (A) (I) NH
Madan, Meherji (A) (I) MD
Richardson, Hunt (A) (I) VA
Strasfogel, Andrew MD
Tucker, Richard (A) (I) AZ
Riley, Mike (A) (I) RI
a. Routine Referee Upgrading
(1) General – After gaining initial certification and additional experience, upgrading is accomplished by being assessed while officiating matches. An appropriate level Assessor observes every call and fills out a Referee Assessment Report while the match is in progress. Subsequently the Assessor analyzes his/her observations, takes into account the number of decisions the candidate made, and the number of marginally incorrect or clearly incorrect calls made. Following each observed match, the Assessor summarizes his/her observations and recommendations in the candidate’s Upgrading Certification Booklet.
A referee may make no more than ten upgrade attempts at each level. Matches without sufficient decisions do not count as attempts, unless the candidate’s performance is unsatisfactory. Assessors record all attempts, whether they count or not.
The National Director of Officials make evaluate any candidate and assign an appropriate level to him/her at any stage of the certification process.
(2) To State Referee (C) – Upgrading to State Referee (C) can be achieved by receiving a total of:
Three “pass” recommendations from two or more Certified Assessors, or
Five “pass” recommendations, including one or more from a certified Assessor and the remainder from at least two different National (A) or Regional (B) Referees.
The level of the matches may be club, local team, or tournament competition involving A players (skill level above 5.0). The candidate must make at least ten correct decisions in each match and perform competently for the match results to count.
Successfully completing the Referee Instructor course also results in State Referee (C) certification.
(3) To Regional Referee (B) – Upgrading to Regional Referee (B) can be attained by receiving a total of:
Three “pass” recommendations from two or more Certified Assessors, or
Five “pass” recommendations, including one or more from a Certified Assessor and the remainder from at least two different National (A) Referees.
The matches must be competitively equivalent to the quarterfinals of a major state or district championship or the early rounds of the U.S. National Championships. The candidate must make at least fifteen correct decisions in each match and perform competently for the match results to count. Each Assessor must conduct an oral debriefing.
(4) To National Referee (A) – Upgrading to National Referee (A) can be achieved by receiving a total of five “pass” recommendations from at least two Certified Assessors. The matches must be competitively equivalent to those involving the top twenty U.S. men and top ten U.S. women. The candidate must make at least twenty correct decisions in each match, including a sufficient number deemed “difficult” by the Assessor, and perform competently for it to count. A minimum of two of the matches must be “very difficult” (A+), with the remainder of “moderately difficult” caliber (A). Each Assessor must conduct an oral debriefing.
(5) From National Referee (A) to International Referee – To achieve International Referee status, a National Referee must referee at least fifteen matches at the international level, be nominated to the WSF by US Squash, and be observed and assessed by top players. The athletes’ assessments are reviewed annually by an international panel of assessors, which makes the final decision.
b. Foreign Equivalency Policy.
US Squash recognizes it is often appropriate to certify referees from other countries residing full time in the U.S. above the Club Referee (D) level initially and to accelerate the subsequent upgrading of some. Accordingly, upon application from a referee who presents appropriate certification materials from his/her home country:
A WSF Referee will be granted National Referee (A) certification.
– A referee from Canada with Squash Canada certification will be granted a like U.S. certification.
All other initial certifications above the entry level will be handled on a case-by-case basis by the US Squash office through the National Director of Officials or by referral to a Regional/District Assessor or National Assessor, as appropriate.
c. Accelerated Referee Upgrading.
(1) General – Accelerated upgrading (i.e., double upgrading) may be appropriate for seasoned hardball squash referees and softball referees with extensive experience in other countries who demonstrate superior officiating skills. After attending an officiating clinic, these candidates may be upgraded at an accelerated rate upon recommendation from the National Director of Officials or a District Director of Officials.
Accelerated upgrading from Club Referee (D) to National Referee (A) is not permitted.
(2) From Club Referee (D) to Regional Referee (B) – Double upgrading to Regional Referee (B) can be achieved by receiving a total of three “pass” recommendations from at least two Certified Assessors. The matches must be equivalent to the quarterfinals of a major state or district championship or the early rounds of the U.S. National Championships. The candidate must give fifteen correct decisions in each match and perform competently at this level for it to be counted. Each Assessor must conduct an oral interview.
(3) From State Referee (C) to National Referee (A) – This double upgrade will be considered only in exceptional circumstances. When authorized by US Squash, it can be achieved by receiving a total of three “pass” recommendations from at least two Certified Assessors. The matches must be competitive ones equivalent to those involving the top twenty U.S. men and top ten U.S. women. A minimum of two of the matches must be very difficult (A+), with the third being difficult (A). The candidate must make at least twenty correct decisions in each match, including a sufficient number deemed difficult by the Assessor, and perform competently at this level for it to be counted. Each Assessor must conduct a debriefing.
d. Supplementary Upgrading System.
(1) General – Good officiating requires experience, experience, experience. To progress successfully a referee must work numerous matches. The Canadian experience suggests that by following the regular upgrading process a candidate may spend eight or more years advancing from Club Referee to National Referee. With that in mind and to encourage referees to seek experience, an alternative upgrading system exists to give credit for matches worked that fall short of an Assessor’s signature.
In matches with too few decisions or too few correct decisions for a signature, the Assessor can grant up to three points for the referee’s effort, depending on the difficulty of the match and/or the Assessor’s judgment of the referee is achievement.
Assessors are authorized to “pool” matches in which they have observed a referee officiating during a single tournament in order to award the candidate a signature. However, pooled matches that result in a signature replace points granted for those matches.
(2) From Club Referee (D) to State Referee (C) – A combination of three signatures and ten points will qualify the candidate for upgrading.
(3) From State Referee (C) to Regional Referee (B) – A combination of four signatures and fifteen points will qualify the candidate for upgrading.
(4) From Regional Referee (B) to National Referee (A) – A combination of four signatures, including one very difficult (A+) match, and 30 points.
e. Rules Changes – Refresher Courses.
Every four years the Rules of World Squash Singles are reviewed and usually revised slightly. In the event of rules changes, certified referees will be required to receive updated training. The National Director of Officials will specify what form that updating will take. In the event of extensive changes, it may be necessary to require attendance at a seminar conducted by a Referee Instructor based on instructional material the National Director of Officials prepares. More likely, updating will involve reading an update briefing prepared by the National Director of Officials.
To stay qualified a referee needs to work matches and receive feedback. To retain certification, each referee is required to be assessed at least once per year. The Assessor can be any other certified referee of equivalent or higher level. The District Director of Officials will manage the revalidation for Regional (B), State (C), and Club (D) Referees in their districts. National (A) Referees should submit a completed assessment form directly to the National Director of Officials at least once annually. Referees also are encouraged to maintain a summary record of their officiating activity using the Activity Record form such as that shown in Part 4 of this Handbook.
In the event an official no longer meets the standards of his/her rating, US Squash will downgrade or decertify the official. Cases involving extenuating circumstances’ preventing an assessment should be submitted to the National Director of Officials for resolution.
When a certified referee does not receive an assessment at least once annually, that referee shall be treated as retired and carried on the US Squash rolls as a “Referee Emeritus.” Returning to active status requires successful assessment and the approval of a District Director of Officials for Regional Referee (B) through Club Referee (D) or National Director of Officials approval for a retired National Referee (A).