Athlete Leadership Programs (ALPs)

Athlete Leadership Overview

Athlete Leadership Programs (ALPs) allow Special Olympic Colorado (SOCO) athletes to help shape the future of the Special Olympics movement and ensure all people with intellectual disabilities have the opportunity to participate in sports training and competition that is fun and fair. ALPs train athletes to serve in meaningful leadership roles other than or in addition to sports.

Goals of Athlete Leadership Programs:

  • Allow athletes self-determination of how and in what roles they will participate in Special Olympics
  • Provide athletes with the training and certification, where appropriate, to properly prepare them for success
  • Include athletes in positions of influence and leadership throughout the organization to help determine policy and set direction.
  • Provide training and education for existing leadership as we welcome and encourage athletes in their new roles
  • Recognize athletes’ ability to contribute in these roles in a meaningful way by holding them accountable to all SOCO policies and rules

Athlete Leadership Program Catalog

Athlete Input Council

This council is a forum for athletes to report to other athletes and Program leaders what is happening in their areas, voice their opinions about important issues, and gain leadership training and experience. Each area should have representatives that sit on the Council for a two-year term. There will be quarterly meetings the week prior to the Colorado State Board meetings – March, June, September, and December.

Athlete Input Council Members
  • Chair – Mackenzie Beauvais-Nikl
  • Denver – David Riley
  • West – Jacob Duran
  • Northeast – Tim Miner
  • Youth Activation Committee Representative – Mae Robison
  • Southeast – Tim Sharpe
  • At-Large –  Andie Zitek
Athlete Input Council Qualifications and Requirements
    • Athlete who sits on State Board must fill one (1) spot on the council
    • Athlete who is tapped from the YAC must fill one (1) spot on the council
    • There must be four (4) athletes each representing their region
    • Athletes must be prepared to sit on the council for 2 years
    • Attend 75% of yearly meetings (at least 3)
    • Active participant in Special Olympics Colorado Programs: not only an athlete but also a participant in at least 1 other aspect of programming such as leadership, volunteering, coaching, health, etc.
    • Be willing to speak or present to groups of people about Special Olympics
    • Athlete must be able to communicate effectively. They should demonstrate adequate expressive and receptive language skills. This can include non-verbal communication methods.
    • Athlete should demonstrate appropriate behaviors; i.e. gets along with others, has positive outlook, is dependable, demonstrates polite behaviors, & good sportsmanship.
    • Willing to help out when needed and motivate others
    • Athlete must be over 18, or no longer attending high school (excluding YAC Liaison)
    • Once term is up, athlete will attend one more meeting to transition new member that will replace their position

NOTE: If selected athlete fails to meet the qualifications & requirements as outlined above, they are subject to removal from their position.

Athlete Input Council Selection Process

Youth Activation Committee (YAC) representative will be nominated by the staff member overseeing the YAC at the time. All other members will follow steps outlined below:

  • Athlete leadership coordinator will announce open position
  • Allow two-week time period for nominations
  • Convene committee to review the applications
  • Committee will consist of 2-3 SOCO staff members in addition to the athlete leadership coordinator. Members may include CEO, Regional Managers, or other staff whom interact with athletes closely.
  • Member chosen and announced prior to next meeting

Applicants may self-nominate, and we HIGHLY RECOMMEND having a reference letter from a coach and/or Regional Manager. In order to apply for an open position, you MUST compete in the region you are applying to represent. (I.e. a Denver athlete cannot fill the role of the Western Slope representative)

Athletes who are interested in serving on the Athlete Input Council in the future should alert their Regional Manager and / or Stephanie Levine.

Athlete Leadership Programs University (ALPs U)
presented by Ent Credit Union

Special Olympics CO hosts its ALPs U twice a year, which provides education for athletes in a variety of leadership topics.

is Going Virtual!

Click here for information on ALPs U course curriculum

Upcoming Events

Healthy Relationships and Boundaries Part Two

Healthy Relationships and Boundaries Part Two

In this webinar, Terri Couwenhoven will be speaking as part of Special Olympics Colorado’s Family Health Forum. Part Two's programming is catered towards our athletes only. This is for athletes that are ages 15 and up.4:00-5:00 PM Don’t Cross The Line!  Boundary Basics for Staying Safe and Appropriate In this session you will learn what a […]

Find out more »
27 January 2021
Strategic Plan Town Hall

Strategic Plan Town Hall

Special Olympics Colorado will be hosting a Strategic Plan Town Hall on Thursday, January 28 at 6:00 p.m. This town hall is open to everyone, including coaches, athletes, volunteers, etc. During this time, we will review our Strategic Plan and answer any questions you may have! If you are interested in attending, please click the […]

Find out more »
28 January 2021

Questions? Reach out!

Stephanie Levine
Athlete Leadership & Family Services Coordinator
(720) 359-3113

Thank you to our sponsors!