Prospective Officials

First, sign up online to attend an OVR New Referee Clinic!
Online registration is closed for the 2023 season and opens in early fall for the 2024 season.
If you want to be reminded when the Clinics are scheduled, fill out the form below.

  1. Clinic Registration & Fee. The OVR offers a virtual (online) officiating clinic for prospective new referees on various dates in late November and early December. The clinic will last approximately two hours. Attendance is required at one session; pick the date that best fits your schedule. Clinic registration must be completed online at least 48 hours prior to attendance at this link: New Official Signup Page. There is a $25 non- refundable registration fee, paid online via PayPal.
    Please submit the Prospective Official's Data Sheet via email to Brian Hemelgarn (hemelgarn@ovr.org) and Josh Hall (hall@ovr.org) prior to the clinic. Prospective Official Data Sheet.
  2. USAV Membership. To participate in USA Volleyball events (including our training program outlined below), USAV/OVR membership is required. USAV/OVR membership provides liability insurance and secondary medical coverage to each member, among other things. The total cost for a First Year OVR Official membership is $47, plus background check (see #3 below). To purchase a First Year Official membership, use one of the two links below depending upon your age:

    If you are 18 or older, use this link.

    If you are 17 or younger, use this link. If you are going to turn 18 before the clinic, wait to purchase a membership until after you have turned 18.

  3. Background Checks. USA Volleyball conducts mandatory background checks on all adult members, 18 years of age or older. The cost is $14 and is valid for one season. Regardless of any other background screen you may have, the USAV background check is mandatory. The background check must be completed prior to attending one of our on-court practical training sessions. When you purchase the membership, you will be sent an email with a link to the background check signup.
  4. SafeSport. In conjunction with the United States Olympic & Paralympic Committee, all USAV members over the age of 18, including referees, must complete SafeSport training. This program's goal is to safeguard athletes from bullying, hazing, harassment, physical/emotional/sexual abuse, and sexual misconduct. General information can be found at: SafeSport - USA Volleyball , and also at: https://uscenterforsafesport.org. SafeSport must be completed prior to attending one of our on-court practical training sessions. The SafeSport training program is free. When you purchase the USAV/OVR membership, you will be sent an email with a link to the SafeSport course signup.

    After completing your USAV/OVR membership registration, you will immediately have access to USAV's online training modules in the USAV Academy (see #5). You will need to complete all modules in the New Professional Referee Training course to obtain your referee certification. It is highly recommended you complete as many modules as possible prior to participating in the virtual (online) clinic (see #1) and the on-court practical training session (see #7).

  5. USAV Academy. Being a USAV member affords all prospective and existing referees with access to USA Volleyball's online training academy, which includes rules and scoring exams. The library of training modules is extensive; the New Professional Referee Training course includes all modules you are required to complete. Instructions for accessing the USAV Academy are available.

    Once you have attended a clinic, sign up for on-court training.

  6. Training Sign-Up and Fee. At the conclusion of the virtual clinic (#1), prospective referees who wish to continue with the certification process must attend an on-court training session, typically in January. Dates, sites, and times for the training/evaluation tournaments will be distributed in advance so that you can plan ahead. The cost for the on-court training day (8 hours) is $125 and must be paid online before participation. Refunds will not be granted to referee candidates who do not consequently fulfill their training/evaluation tournament assignment, i.e., a "no show". Withdrawal from an on-court training assignment must be done no later than Wednesday (11:59 pm ET) the week of your assignment, to receive a refund of the $125. Referee candidates who complete the on-court training but are not awarded a referee certification are not entitled to any refund.
  7. Practical On-court Training As a referee candidate, you will receive first and second referee training and scorer training during the morning rounds of the tournament. For the afternoon rounds, you will receive observations and evaluations as R1, R2 and scorer to determine your preparedness to receive a USAV referee certification. This last step is pass/fail, but we have an overwhelming success rate!

    So, in a nutshell...

  8. Summary of Requirements & Fees.
    • $61 - $25 USAV, $22 OVR membership registration, and $14 background screen; non-refundable; current USAV members do not need to re-pay these fees, i.e., coaches, chaperones, players
    • SafeSport training - free; must be completed prior to attending on-court session
    • Online training modules (review prior to virtual/online clinic); rules/scoring exams (after attending virtual/online clinic); modules & exams are required to complete certification process
    • $25 - New referee clinic (includes hardcopy USAV Rulebook); non-refundable; submit Prospective Official Data Sheet , and choose on-court training date(s)
    • $125 - Practical on-court training; refundable for any candidate not accepted for any reason, and any candidate who withdraws as noted in #6 above
    • Referee uniform & equipment - cost varies based on items purchased; details will be provided to all prospective referee candidates in advance of on-court training session
    • State laws also require a Concussion Awareness course for sports officials; the course is free. Details will be provided at our clinics. If you have already completed this course, simply provide a copy of the certificate of completion after you have successfully completed our referee certification program.

    If you have specific questions about officiating in the Ohio Valley Region, contact: Josh Hall, OVR New Official Development Coordinator (hall@ovr.org) or Brian Hemelgarn, OVR Officials Chair (hemelgarn@ovr.org).

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