Carolien Stadhouders decides to step off after four years of dedicated work as the Director of Umpires for the European Softball Federation. Replacing her will be Raoul Machalet, the previous Softball Europe Deputy Director of Umpires in charge of the development.

Together with their team, the Director of Umpires (DoU) is in charge of the development and assignments for the Umpires-in-Chief. At the end of every year, the DoU prepares the evaluations for Softball Europe umpires. Carolien took this role in 2016 after four years in the European Softball Federation technical commission. 

During these years, Softball Europe Technical Director Mike Jennings worked shoulder to shoulder with Carolien: "As Carolien stands down as Softball Europe Director of Umpires, I would like to thank her, and to pay tribute to the dedication and professionalism she has brought to all the work of the Technical Commission. During the years we have worked together, she brought great personal skill and commitment to the role, with expert leadership of the umpire group and a wealth of experience gained all around the world."

Although Carolien is stepping off as the DoU, she will continue her role as Regional Umpire Coordinator with the World Baseball Softball Confederation (WBSC). As the Regional Umpire Coordinator, she has managed the exchange programs with other regional confederations and has acted as the liaison between Softball Europe and WBSC.

"I am very glad that she will continue as our WBSC Regional Umpire Coordinator within the WBSC, where she is highly respected at the very top of our sport", Mike Jennings comments.

“Active interest about umpires in all aspects of their performances; meticulous preparation for clinics and seminars; and staying on top of things in her job comes naturally to Carolien," Softball Europe President Gabriel Waage comments, "I was sure that all things in the area of umpires went well as Carolien headed this section."

Gabriel Waage also adds: "Carolien spread out positive energy and empathizes with the umpires team. Thank you, Carolien, for all you have done for softball in Europe, in the role of umpire, UiC or Director of Umpires. I do believe Softball Europe will continue on the values what you established.” 

Carolien asked her right-hand man, Raoul Machalet, to take her position as DoU, and he accepted with enthusiasm.

Raoul umpired for ten years, before retiring in 2016. Immediately after, he became an Umpire in Chief for Softball Europe tournaments. Last year, he started working on the development of new umpires, spreading his passion for softball to his colleagues.

Mike Jennings takes the opportunity to welcome Raoul as the new DoU: "He comes highly regarded within the umpire group and, with his team of senior Umpires in Chief, he will, I am sure, continue to deliver to all our SE events the expert officials we have always enjoyed. I look forward to working with him and his team as we emerge from a disrupted period, towards a new season which promises to provide challenges to us all."

Thank you, Carolien, and best of luck to Raoul and his team! 

/ Elda Ghilardi