Mario “Mack” Alarcon Hall of Fame 1995

In 1995 Mario “Mack” Alarcon was the third inductee into the Florida State Referees (FSR-FLSRC) Hall of Fame.

Mario H. Alarcon (Mack) was born in La Paz, Bolivia in 1931.  Growing up he played soccer in the organized youth leagues until his departure to the United States in 1946.  Since there was no soccer in Florida, he played high school basketball and football and was second team All Catholic Conference in both sports.

After returning from an Army active duty tour in 1957, he took the leadership of soccer and formed the first soccer league in the southeastern United States, the South Florida Soccer League and was the league’s first president for the next seven years.  The league brought support for the formation of youth teams and youth leagues.

Mack arranged an invitation for the Cuban National Youth Champions, the Lawton Juniors, came to Miami for a visit which created vast publicity for all the youth programs.  He was instrumental in obtaining funds from a grant given to adult soccer by the Kennedy Foundation so that the youth programs were given greater financial support.  His friend Ray Thompson was able to hire ex-English League soccer coach and Canada National team coach Tom Hayes which caused a coach’s program to be organized. In 1963 he co-founded the Florida Youth Soccer Association and served as an officer until the year 2000.

Mack was instrumental in creating the Florida State Soccer Association for adult players in 1957 and was an active officer until 2012.

The first state referee program was organized, and the Florida State Referees (FSR) was born in 1964. He directed the Florida affiliation to US Soccer and became its first representative.  There were no other states in the southeast affiliated at that time.  Soccer was now a new sport in Florida and he conducted many clinics for referees, coaches, players, parents and administrators.  Neighboring states were seeking his assistance.  For his youth and adult soccer endeavors, he received the Key to the City of Miami on two occasions.  In 1965, Mack, Fred Stauber, and Ray Thompson were the first three certified referees in the southeast registered with US Soccer.

Between 1963 and 1965 Mack served on the National Team Player Selection Committee for US Soccer.

In 1966 Mack began meeting with high school athletic directors and coaches to persuade them to adopt soccer as a new scholastic sport.  He did the same with college level institutions to urge the addition of soccer in their athletic programs and encouraged all to support youth soccer since it would become a source for obtaining players at the college level. In 1968 he formed the first NISOA Florida chapter and served as president for 7 years.  During 1972-1973 he was one of four to referee NCAA Division 1 finals and refereed several National Junior College finals.

Other timeline events:

1969     US Soccer appoints him as national challenge Cup District (Region) Commissioner, member of the National Junior (Youth) Cup Competition committee south, chairman of the Junior (Youth) Player’s Selection committee South, member of the National Junior (Youth) Promotion Materials Committee.  All these appointments are listed on the 1969 US Soccer Football Association’s directory.

1971-1973        Served on the National USSF “Junior (now Youth) Cups competition and also was a “District” (now Region) Youth and Adult Soccer Commissioner.

1977-1982        As a volunteer coach and lecturer he started soccer programs for inmates at the Miami Federal Correctional Institution as means for rehabilitation.  As a member of the North Dade Optimist club he started a soccer program and then attended meetings of other Optimist clubs to begin soccer programs.  This resulted in the formation of the first Optimist league in Florida.

1988-1994        Represented US Soccer in many international games played in the State of Florida.

Served for six years as USYS South Region referee committee chairman and provided special training for all referees, assessors, and assignors in all the South Region States.  He published a detailed guide to be followed by all state youth referee administrators in connection with the regional tournaments (Southern Regionals).

1988-2003        Started, established, and served as chairman and administrator of US Soccer’s Overseas Referee Branch serving youth and adult soccer. The branch serves US military personnel and their dependents overseas

1990-1991        With Charles Rodney Kenney, he co-wrote, started, and tested throughout the US the National Referee Assignor program which included training for assignors at all levels of the game.  This is now a mandatory national program for assignor certification and recertification.

1993-1994        Member of the US Soccer International Relations and Protocol Committee

1994     For serving over 40 continuous years as a pioneer and leader in soccer, Master Card and Pele appointed him as Ambassador of Soccer to the 1994 FIFA World Cup USA.  The formal ceremony was held in New York City.

2004     Received the US Soccer Outstanding Achievement Award for 15 years of service to the Overseas program.  The formal ceremony was held in Los Angeles.

2009     The most prestigious FSSA Florida Cup was renamed and is perpetually named “The Marion H. Alarcon Cup.”

2010     With the assistance of other Hall of Fame members, he wrote a 40-page document containing the History of Florida Youth Soccer. (1954-2010).

Mack has written additional articles for Diario Las Americas, Miami Herald, Miami News, Touchline, Fair Play, Goal magazine, and others.  Mack was commissioned to revamp the Florida Youth Soccer Associations Rules and bylaws on three separate occasions in a span of 22 years.

Mack was appointed to at least 20 regional and national youth tournaments as a lead referee instructor and/or lead referee assessor.  He received an appointment from US Soccer as a National Referee Assessor being among the first group to graduate in the first course given by US Soccer and served in that capacity for over 25 years.  He achieved the grade of National Instructor and served in that capacity for over 25 years also.  The assignments as instructor and assessor gave him the opportunity to serve soccer at all levels by conducting clinics for ages youth and up.

Mack retired after 40 years military duty with the US Army and as a full-time officer in the US Army National Guard.  He is a member of the following organizations:

  • National Guard Officers Association of the United States-Life Member and recipient of the US Legion of Merit Medal
  • Florida State Soccer Association-Hall of Fame
  • Florida Youth Soccer Association-Hall of Fame
  • National Intercollegiate Soccer Officials Association-Life Member
  • NISOA South Florida Chapter-Hall of Fame and Life Member
  • US Soccer Federation Referee Program-Life Member
  • US Adult Soccer Association-Hall of Fame