Gale and Syed selected USACA interim vice-presidents
Michael Gale and Rafey Syed have been appointed interim first and second vice-presidents respectively of the USA Cricket Association according to USACA President Gladstone Dainty. The move was approved at the board meeting that took place on April 29 to appoint four people to the Cricket Holdings America LLC board of directors.
"Their resumes speak for themselves," Dainty told ESPNcricinfo. "Mr. Syed is a young, bright, articulate, very technologically savvy and hard-working cricketing person." Syed, who lives in a western suburb of Chicago, had been serving as the secretary of the Central East Region board prior to his USACA appointment.
British-born Gale, who lives in Austin, Texas has been involved in recent years trying to encourage youth cricket development with the initiation of the Intercity Cup, a regional tournament played between teams representing Dallas, Houston and Austin.
"The thing about Michael is that he is promising to work with the youth programme, especially to coordinate with Jamie Harrison to get more funding for Jamie's youth programme," Dainty said, with reference to the US Youth Cricket Association. "Michael has access to some corporate people and some professional sports owners. I find those to be very serious attributes which we're lacking right now."
The first vice-president position had been vacant since November when Nabeel Ahmed resigned while the second slot opened up at the start of the new year when Manaf Mohamed stepped down from his position on the board to accept a full-time paid position as USACA general manager.
However, six months after Don Lockerbie was relieved of his duties as chief executive, there still has not been any progress made toward finding a replacement. Dainty told ESPNcricinfo in December that he hoped to have the position filled "within the next 60 days or so" and said it was a priority for the new year.
In a subsequent interview in February, Dainty said, "We won't hire by March 1, but I'm hoping we will advertise by March 1." The process appears to be completely stalled now and Dainty did not give any clear indication when that would change.
"We haven't interviewed anybody but this week we're going to have some conversations with the ICC Global Development Manager about doing some changes," Dainty said. "We have not formalised the job description for the CEO position but let it be known that we have two full-time employees right now. Who we have as a CEO or as part of our management, I really don't know what the obsession is. We have Manaf as general manager and we have an administrative assistant."
"Hiring other people and putting them in certain positions is dependent upon a funding level and what is it we want to do. We need to be very careful in terms of being too administratively top heavy and putting people in positions and then not really defining what their job is; it becomes difficult for them and to the organisation."
Peter Della Penna is a journalist based in New Jersey