Transitioning Veterans to Championship Coaches: The Avalon Institute Partners with Soldiers to Sidelines to Train Transitioning Veterans as Certified Youth Sports Coaches

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The Avalon Institute, a Washington, DC leadership development firm, announces key strategic partnership with Soldiers to Sidelines to support and train transitioning veterans interested in athletic coaching careers. Soldiers to Sidelines provides veterans with a renewed sense of purpose and belonging by developing them into expert and highly effective coaches.

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The Avalon Institute Washington, DC

Coaching is the greatest gift anyone can give and we felt that with Soldiers to Sidelines, we could create the best and most inclusive army of coaches to positively impact thousands of young athletes throughout our country.

The Avalon Institute, founded by General John E. Michel (RET) and entrepreneur Perry Jobe Smith is a 21st century partnership specializing in positive leadership, professional coaching, strategy, and business development. This summer, Avalon is proud to announce a key strategic partnership with Washington, DC based Soldiers to Sidelines whose mission is to develop transitioning military leaders into outstanding coaches. Once candidates have successfully earned their intensive coaching certification, Soldiers to Sidelines seeks to place them in youth sports programs so they may inspire, motivate and encourage young athletes to succeed in athletics and life. Additionally, some soldier-coaches will continue working toward earning college coaching internships.

Harrison Bernstein founded Soldiers to Sidelines based on the belief that positive leadership experience and service in the US military are vital building blocks in developing a great coach. Utilizing this foundation, soldier-coaches undergo an intensive certification seminar in the classroom and on the field. Upon successful completion, the organization seeks to procure coaching positions for its alumni at the youth, high school and collegiate levels. Currently, Soldiers to Sidelines operates from the greater DC Metro area and focuses on football and lacrosse. Future plans call for expanding the organization and training to encompass all sports nationwide.

Bernstein developed the Soldiers To Sidelines curriculum from his 18 years of experience in coaching, teaching and business. He has coached football and sports performance at the high school level, NCAA DIV I, II, and II levels, and the NFL. He also taught 7 years at George Washington University and owns and operates a sports performance business.

Coaching, developing, and motivating people have been the focus of Bernstein's career. When asked about his inspiration behind founding Soldiers to Sidelines, he notes, "I believe coaching is the greatest gift anyone can give and we felt that with Soldiers to Sidelines, we could create the best and most inclusive army of coaches to positively impact thousands of young athletes throughout our country." Additionally, Bernstein will integrate Avalon’s roundtable leadership methodology and diagnostic tools such as the Cognitive Peak Profile (CPP) into the Soldiers to Sidelines coaching curriculum as well as his private executive coaching business.

Avalon founder and partner General John E. Michel says, “We love the mission of Soldiers to Sidelines, especially so as our Avalon team is also comprised of many military veterans with excellent experience in positive and purposeful leadership. We fully understand the necessity of connecting the right people with the right strategies and empowering those individuals to go forth and lead." He concludes, “Our shared vision and methodology makes this partnership with Soldiers to Sidelines a natural fit. We are honored to support this effort."

The Avalon Institute's methodology is informed by the organization's deep seeded principles that emphasize values over rules, dynamic discourse, clarity of purpose, innovation and intentional leadership. Its team of leaders takes on complex issues with the spirit of co-creation and the perseverance to overcome all challenges. For more information and to join the Avalon Institute, please visit our website.

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Matthew Fritz
since: 01/2016
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