Thirty-eight-year-old Mark Bell will take up his new position in February, moving from Langley, BC where he currently resides.
Mark is a Canadian Soccer National B Licence coach. He also holds a National Soccer Coaches Association of America Advanced National Coaching Diploma. He most recently served as an assistant coach of the Douglas College Women’s Soccer Team in New Westminster. The Douglas College Royals reached the finals of the 2016 CCAA National Championships held in Montreal, November 9-12, where they finished with the Bronze Medal––the first time the College Women’s Team has returned with some silverware.
In addition to his role with the College team, Mark was a staff coach for the Westview High School Soccer Academy in Maple Ridge as well as a paid coach with the West Coast Auto Group FC in Maple Ridge/Pitt Meadows. He also runs his own “Simple Soccer” Player Academy in the summer months.
Over the past decade, Mark has also had coaching roles in the Medicine Hat Soccer Association, the Lower Island Soccer Association BCSPL and Super Y programs, the Vancouver Island Soccer Academy, as well as Bays United, Prospect Lake, Lakehill and Gorge soccer clubs in Greater Victoria. He also had the opportunity to work with the Victoria Highlanders Women’s semi-pro team who played in the USL W-League.
“We are delighted to welcome Mark to Kamloops and to our association,” says KYSA President Candace Dodson-Willis. “He will be a big help to our Technical Director (Ciaran McMahon), who is stretched to the limit trying to service a membership of 3,500 players, 400 coaches and a myriad of coach and player development programs.
“We see Mark having a very visible on-field presence and spending a lot of time mentoring our volunteer coaches,” adds Dodson-Willis. “He was a high level player in his younger days and has since become a well-qualified and very experienced coach. We expect him to become an integral part of our organization going forward.”
The KYSA board of directors moved to hire a new full time coach in October of last year with the goal of providing assistance for their Technical Director, who, since joining the association over two years ago, has been working extraordinary hours expanding and improving upon the association’s coach and player development programs.
Bell was selected from 60 applicants with resumes being received from all four corners of the globe.
Bell, who gained valuable experience working in the Arsenal Football Club’s summer programs in England in 2000, before moving on to start his professional coaching career a year later with Total Soccer Systems in Richmond, BC, says, “I have worked in some great environments that include youth clubs, high schools, private academies, and most recently at the college level, but to now have this opportunity with KYSA is a dream come true! I am very excited and honoured to work alongside Ciaran and the rest of the KYSA board and staff who have done an amazing job turning this soccer club into what it is today and I’m hoping my passionate, positive, patient style of coaching helps impact all the players and coaches in Kamloops for years to come!”