USA Skateboarding Welcomes Alexis Sablone and Leigh Hawley to the Organization

February 02, 2022

USA Skateboarding Welcomes Alexis Sablone and Leigh Hawley to the Organization

 

 

Irvine, Calif. (January 27, 2022) — USA Skateboarding (USAS) is pleased to welcome Olympian Alexis Sablone as Women’s Head Coach and Leigh Hawley as General Counsel.

As USAS continues to define its role as the national governing body for the culture-based sport, a strong development program provides the opportunity to contribute much-needed resources at the grassroots level. While the bulk of the NGB’s attention during its first two years was focused on preparing its skaters for the Tokyo Olympic Games, providing an avenue for those that love skateboarding to meaningfully support the culture and the sport is key to its future growth.

As a member of the 2021 USA Skateboarding National Team, Sablone had the best finish of any American woman in Skateboarding at the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games, narrowly missing the podium with a fourth place finish in the Women’s Street event. As the women’s head coach, Sablone will oversee the U.S. national street and park teams—a position previously held by USAS Performance Director, Mimi Knoop.

Alexis Sablone is amongst the most respected female street skateboarders in history. Since capturing the attention of the skateboard world back in 2002, as the only woman to have a part in the ever-memorable PJ Ladd’s Wonderful Horrible Life video, she went on to claim three X Games gold, two silver, and two bronze medals in Women’s Street and is currently the only pro female on several all-male teams including Converse and Alltimers skateboards. Alongside her skateboarding career, Alexis has managed an academic life as well. She holds an undergraduate degree from Columbia University as well as a Master's in Architecture from the prestigious MIT.

"I’ve skated alongside these girls and watched them progress and evolve through the years, and that’s been an amazing experience,” Sablone said. “Now, I’m looking forward to being a part of the team in a different way—passing along whatever knowledge I have to offer and watching them continue to push boundaries.”

Former head coach Knoop: ”It has always been my goal to grow our high performance program at USA Skateboarding, and there is no one more qualified or respected than Alexis Sablone to fill the role of Women's National Team coach. Her experience and accolades as a professional skateboarder are unparalleled, and I know the value she will bring to our athletes and programs will be incomparable.”

 

 

Leigh Hawley is joining USA Skateboarding as General Counsel. Leigh will be overseeing the business and legal affairs for USA Skateboarding and is responsible for managing the organization’s compliance strategies, policies, and business operations.

Leigh joined USA Skateboarding after working most recently as Associate Counsel, Sports Business & Entertainment at Leopoldus Law, APC consulting NGBs on Compliance and Certification strategies, as well as working with professional athletes, sports agencies, music artists, movie directors and writers, and professional sports teams as outside counsel. Prior to her time at Leopoldus Law, she served as a staff auditor at the USOPC.

A graduate from Sandra Day O’Connor’s College of Law’s Sports Law & Business Program at Arizona State University, Leigh returned home to Los Angeles where she was born and raised and began her sports business and legal career as the Basketball and Business Operations Assistant with the Los Angeles Sparks, during the 2016 WNBA Championships.

“I am looking forward to being a part of bringing skateboarding home to the LA28 Games,” Hawley said about her new role. “Growing up in and around the skate culture is something that never leaves you and I am honored to have a significant role in growing the sport. I appreciate being a part of an organization that represents the diverse culture that you get in skating and staying true to our mission, making skating accessible to everyone.”