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USA Team Handball

Dec 20 USA Team Handball Names Dr. Harvey W. Schiller President

Dec. 20, 2013, 4:06 p.m. (ET)

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. -- The USA Team Handball Board of Directors today announced the election of Dr. Harvey W. Schiller as its new president and chairman. The former Executive Director of the United States Olympic Committee, Commissioner of the Southeastern Conference, President of Turner Sports and Chairman and CEO of YankeeNets, Dr. Schiller is one of the most respected and accomplished professionals in all aspects of global sport. He will begin his role with USA Team Handball in January. It is not a fulltime position, which will allow Dr. Schiller to continue his roles as Vice Chairman of America’s Cup and CEO of Schiller Management Group, as well as other board and advisory positions.

“I am pleased to be able to take this role and assist the new leadership of USA Team Handball in the re-organization of what is a fun, exciting, cost-effective global team and training sport,” Schiller said.“Team Handball has been successful on a worldwide level for decades and we are looking forward to building effective grassroots programs, as well as recruiting former professional and collegiate athletes who are looking to stay involved with an Olympic team sport competitive at the highest levels. It will be an exciting challenge for us as we grow the game to championship levels in world, Pan American, and Olympic competitions.”

“This is a landmark day for our organization,” said Matt Van Houten, CEO USA Team Handball. “Dr. Schiller’s leadership and successful business acumen will be critical to our growth going forward as we re-launch both the grassroots and the competitive side of our sport in the next year. We feel that we can position ourselves correctly to be a very effective and forward-thinking NGB going forward for the next decade, and having Dr. Schiller’s counsel and strategic leadership is critical for us.”

Team Handball is played throughout five continents by over 180 countries and 30 million people all ages, worldwide and has been an indoor sport in the Summer Olympics program since 1972.

The game is played by two teams of seven players each (six court players and a goalkeeper on each team) who pass a ball and attempt to throw it into the goal of the other team. A standard match consists of two periods of 30 minutes, and the team that scores more goals wins.  The game is fast and includes intense physical contact, as the defenders try to stop the attackers from approaching the goal. Unlike in basketball, where players are allowed to commit only 5 or 6 fouls in a game, handball players are allowed an unlimited number of faults, which are considered good defense and disruptive to the attacking team's rhythm. Certain elements of the game are reminiscent of rugby: for instance, the degree of force that defense may use to stop the attacker with the ball, together with the lack of protections and helmets. Usually both teams score at least 20 goals each, and it is not uncommon for both teams to score more than 40 goals.

USA Team Handball (USATH) is a 501(c)(3) organization and is the National Governing Body (NGB) for the Olympic sport of Team Handball. The mission of USA Team Handball shall be to develop, promote, educate and grow the sport of Team Handball at all levels in the United States and to enable United States athletes to achieve sustained competitive excellence to win medals in international and Olympic competition. USA Team Handball is the only organization recognized by the USOC and IHF to lead handball initiatives in the United States.

The immediate goal of USA Team Handball is to restore hope, dignity and traction the sport's faithful, energize a growing base of players and create an all-new model for international success. USA Team Handball is simultaneously working to support and grow: The national club structure culminates in the top two domestic events, College National Championships in April and Open Nationals in May.  Grassroots programs such as Boys & Girls Clubs, YMCA's, and schools will expand in future years.  The Senior Men's and Women's National Teams are now training full time at Auburn University, as a result of the recently founded partnership between AU and USATH, with the goal of competing internationally and qualifying for the 2016 Olympic Games as well as developing Youth and Junior National Teams.

Contact:  Matt Van Houten (mvh@usateamhandball.org; 719-866-2203). The original version of the press release can be found here.

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