September 2023 Hello APPL Enthusiasts, We have a lot of great teams in our league.  Not all of them won the State Championships, but they are still great in that they competed throughout the season, they demonstrated good sportsmanship and they had fun doing it.  There is one team, however, that stands out, not necessarily “above the rest” on the court, but they met challenges that the rest were not faced with. That team is Team APPL, our team of volunteers, all of whom enable our league to take place.  Team APPL is now 34 volunteers strong across our 5 regions of close to 5000 players and 400 teams.  Many of you know our League Coordinators, your primary APPL interface. We all know that you wouldn’t be playing APPL’s team-based league pickleball without them.  Many of you don’t know, however, the other volunteers who also play huge roles in making the league available to you.  Roles such as Venue Managers who work with our APPL managed venues so that roughly 50% of the teams that play in the league have a place to play their home matches.  Or our Player Seeking a Team Coordinators who help players find teams or even form teams of their own, meet new friends and have a blast playing in the league.  Or our volunteers who are focused on improving the player AND volunteer experience, whether it’s creating and editing newsletters and other key communication vehicles, or driving changes to our business processes in order to reduce the volunteer workload and/or that of the captains through technology enhancements.  We recently had a new volunteer come forward who is helping us manage and improve our ratings appeals process.  Lastly, but certainly not least by any means, we have volunteers who ensure we meet our corporate requirements to Federal and State agencies, as well as ensure compliance with our insurance requirements.  All of these roles are critical to APPL’s success and to our ability to provide you the format of pickleball that you enjoy.  They donate a considerable amount of their time when they otherwise could be doing something else, and they do it for you.  In closing, I ask for only two things: first, if you bump into someone who volunteers for APPL, say hi and thank them for their contribution; and second, if you see a volunteer needed posting in our newsletter or on our website and you are looking for a way to give back some of your time for the benefit of others, please give the posting serious consideration.  Reach out to APPL to find out more about it if you think it’s something that you might enjoy.  One thing of which I’m certain –  you will very much enjoy meeting and working with all the volunteers on Team APPL. I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again, APPL volunteers are exemplary role models of how a team can work together to achieve some extremely amazing accomplishments.  With you as our partners, we will make this season the best season yet!
Greg Mather
Arizona Pickleball Players League, Inc. – President
A nonprofit organization run entirely by volunteers.