The Southwestern Youth Association (SYA) was established in November of 1973 with 350 participants. The purpose of SYA was to provide good, clean, healthful, recreational competitive sports activities for the youth of Southwestern Fairfax County. The program was open to all youth regardless of their financial status or athletic ability. Southwestern Youth Association was started with a $1,500 donation from the founder, Carl Mullins. The league began with a spring Soccer program made up of 10 teams. This was followed by Baseball with 9 teams and a girls’ Softball league with 8 teams. Football followed soon after in the fall.
Today, Southwestern Youth Association serves over 13,000 children ages 4-19, and over 5,000 families in Centreville and Clifton Virginia as well as some surrounding locations. SYA is a non-profit program, with the operations and daily affairs of the organization executed by an all-volunteer Board of Directors. They are dedicated to providing the children of Southwestern Fairfax County with a safe and positive environment through sports competition.
SYA was organized under an all-volunteer Executive Board of Directors consisting of the President, Vice-President, Secretary and Treasurer. The SYA Executive Board of Directors positions are held for a one year term. Applicants must be in good standing with SYA and at least 21 years of age. The election meeting is held annually in September for the following year. The 2020 Executive Board of Directors are: President, Jeff Stein, CEO Gary Flather; Vice President, Paul Saint Germain; Treasurer, Bryan Hunt; Secretary, Erich Wiemann and our Legal Counsel, Will Pickett.
SYA offers sports opportunities year round in 13 different sports including Little League and Babe Ruth Baseball, Softball, Track and Field, Soccer, Football, Volleyball, Rugby, Field Hockey, Lacrosse, Cheerleading, Wrestling, Cricket and Basketball. With such a diverse program, volunteers are the backbone of SYA with approximately 2,500+ volunteers each year. Volunteers are needed as board members, coaches, assistant coaches, referees and umpires, team parents, field and equipment maintenance, scorekeepers, fundraisers and program coordinators. Each sport is organized under a Volunteer Board Commissioner who is recommended annually by the sport membership and approved by the SYA Board of Directors by vote.
More recent history for SYA has been the purchase of the SYA Sports Park, a 120 acre parcel of land that is being developed into a premiere youth sports complex for the youth of our community with 11 ball fields, parks, jogging trails and more. The SYA Sports Park grand opening was held on March 25, 2006. At present, the SYA Sports Park has three full size rectangular fields, two 60 foot diamonds, a cross country course, a fitness course, a pavilion, a snack bar, playground and batting cages. Please see our SYA Sports Park Website for pictures and more detailed information.