Q&A With Candidates 2022 – 2 of 2

Question 1: NAFA has attempted to become more transparent in recent years. Where has NAFA succeeded and where do you feel that there is still room for improvement?E

Emily-Rose Allred: I think Nafa has been very clear in how they have handled flyball during this pandemic and have made responsible choices for their competitors. I think they could have been more clear with WHY they have gone ahead and chosen laser measuring as well as showing the reasons why carpal measuring did not work. I think many people do not understand why it was chosen, which comes down to a lack of communication.

Russell Evans: Easily accessible Board meeting agendas and minutes are examples of transparency.

Kathy Haney: The Board has been very good lately at posting dates and times for Board meetings, asking for input on important items and being available to all members of NAFA. We have done this through the NAFA website, Facebook page and meetings with judges and RDs. I believe we can be even more transparent by updating all of our social media platforms and possibly by Board members reaching out individually to as many NAFA participants in areas near and far to them. Information on reaching Board members is available on the website, but maybe part of the updated platforms could include better profiles and more information on reaching out to the Board Members.

Meagan Langs: NAFA has made a lot of recent changes and they have communicated those changes to the people quicker than in years past which I believe has been a great thing and a huge positive for our sport. For example, NAFA has made changes widening the boxes and jumps which were discussed and implemented very quickly compared to changes in the past. I would like to see NAFA be more innovative and less reactionary to changes in our sport. To do this, we will have to be even quicker with our willingness to try new ideas and communicate responses to the flyball community. If we come up with new ideas and implement them before other flyball associations then this will change the perception that is held by some that we are slow and unwilling to innovate. We can also do this by making our website easier to update.

Question 2: What board committee would you see yourself as most qualified for and why?

Russell Evans: Disciplinary. I’ve learned that compassion and objectivity are needed in equal measure to effectively evaluate a disciplinary problem, and have strived to develop these qualities.

Kathy Haney: I really enjoyed being the Chairman of the Election Committee last year and, if I am elected to the Board again, I would like to resume that role or at least be able to help by being on the committee. It can be a complicated process and I believe it helps to have done it before. I am currently on the Rules Committee and would like to continue on there as well, possibly adding the Disciplinary Committee which would be a good fit with the Rules Committee.

Meagan Langs: I believe my experience as a teacher, paralegal and Regional Director would help qualify me for any of the committees and I would be happy to sit in on any of the committees. I have skills working with Drafting/Writing, Organization, Multitasking, Training/Educating, Researching, Communication, Microsoft Office, Adobe, Foxit Phantom PDF, QuickBooks, WordPress, DropBox, Social Media sites such as Facebook, YouTube, Pinterest, Instagram, Yelp and Google.

I would like to help with communications, marketing and an “idea committee”. I know there isn’t a current “idea” committee but wouldn’t it be great to have a committee that brainstormed new ideas and worked with the other committees when needed?

I would like the purpose of each committee communicated in more detail to the flyball community. Information about how often they meet and what types are things the committees are working on each month should be presented in some way. These details help people understand the work that goes on behind the scenes and also lets people know things are happening even if the board meeting notes haven’t been posted. Additionally, it would help me (and others) fully understand what a specific committee does.

Emily-Rose Allred: I think I would do a great job on the marketing committee, I’m personable and have a great love of flyball that oozes out of me. I’d love to help bring more people to this sport.

Question 3: As a board member, how would you address and prioritize updating NAFA’s aging technology?

Kathy Haney: I have to admit, I am certainly no technology whiz, but I do see the need to continue to update our technology as often and as quickly as possible. The best I can offer is to support the efforts being made to have new starting systems and to get them made and out to the tournaments in a timely manner.

Meagan Langs: I believe updating NAFA’s technology should be our number one priority. Updating our technology could help us to stand out among other flyball associations and make us a leader in innovation.

Ideas: It would be great to have smaller updated lights/timers that also recorded the dogs individual runs and team times. I believe NAFA spends a lot of money on shipping the large lights from one state to the other and updating these systems could help to make the load smaller and hopefully make the shipping costs less. How many light systems could we have purchased if we didn’t have high shipping costs for the current EJS lights? Has this been researched? How many light sets do we need as we sit here today? If the lights were smaller would we have more teams willing to “hand carry” the lights from tournament to tournament?

The NAFA website needs to be updated. Updating our website will help in communications and make sure that news is being communicated quickly to all members and will help grow our sport.

Emily-Rose Allred: As a board member, how would you address and prioritize updating NAFA’s aging technology? I know our lighting system needs renovations but honestly I think our website is in dire need of an upgrade. Of all of competitors we have to have a graphic designer and coders that could help freshen up our site and make it more user friendly.

Russell Evans: Lighter, easier-to-ship timing systems. Current EJS is very heavy and awkward. A simple, low-cost “start dog” trainer (to reduce early starts). Find ways to move towards paperless tournaments.

Q&A with Candidates 2022 – 1 of 2

Question 1: How do you see yourself managing your work/life balance along with the time commitment of board members?

Kathy Haney: I have been managing that for the last 3 years during which I have been a Board member.  I am currently semi-retired from the business my husband and I have run for the past 30+ years.  Spending a lot of time babysitting young grandchildren, but can use my flyball board time to relax from that, lol.

Russell Evans: My family life and my work have always been my priorities. Finding the required time to satisfactorily support being a board member will be a challenge, but a welcome challenge. Flyball has been an important part of my family since 2003 and we’ve always managed by working together. Communication and understanding expectations are vital in this regard.

Emily-Rose Allred:  I am very lucky to have a job that allows me to take care of many personal matters while at work. I’m in a position where my job is not time intensive nor particularly emotionally needy. I have a lot of energy and time to give to another outlet. 

Meagan Langs: I know that board members are expected to attend and participate in board meetings and various committees.  I also know they are expected to help with the hosting of CanAm every year.  If elected I will be able to actively attend and participate in board meetings, and at CanAm.  I also promise to not take on more than I can handle during my term. On a personal note, my “kids” are my dogs & cat.   My husband works from home and takes care of our fur kids when I am away traveling for flyball etc. I have the support of my family to live out my flyball dreams.

Question 2: Being on the board sometimes requires compromise or even sometimes things not going your way. Even if the vote or item doesn’t go your way, are you willing to support the stance of the majority?

Meagan Langs: I understand majority rules.  I also understand that I need to be supportive of the process.  One of the things that makes NAFA so amazing is that we do have a say on things.  Voting is awesome and I am thankful for the opportunity to do so even if I don’t always agree with the end result.  I also know that just because something goes one way for a time it doesn’t mean than things can’t change down the road.  I have found that many things in life and in flyball come full circle.  So, if things don’t go my way at a certain time, it doesn’t mean it won’t change if I stay positive and play the long game.   I am not going to quit NAFA, the board, or flyball because I don’t like a particular vote or decision, and neither should anyone else.

Emily-Rose Allred: I have worked almost a decade in and with animal rescue. I spent a lot of time compartmentalizing and having to work through decisions I didnt agree with, as well as having my mind changed over time with stances I didnt think I would ever come around to. Having an open mind is crucial in situations like this.

Russell Evans: I would always support the majority decision. That is the only way a board can function in support of NAFA members.

Kathy Haney: Absolutely.  I have done it in the past, on the NAFA Board, while running our flyball club and in my professional life.  None of those are dictatorships and you always have to realize that there is a reason and need for having more than one opinion.  Board decisions are made by the majority after research and discussion.  In order for this to work all members need to stand by the final decision, whatever side of that decision they are on.

Question 3: What are your thoughts on flyball equipment specifications (e.g., boxes and jumps)?

Emily-Rose Allred: Flyball is evolving and changing. It only makes sense that the equipment should be changing. I have really liked what ive seen since the box  size change and as a club have discussed the larger jumps. While I know there will be a cost factor which would be difficult for many clubs I do think that larger jumps are the way that the sport is trending. I think we need to make sure we are evaluating safety in the sport as dogs are only getting consistently faster. 

Kathy Haney: I believe there is always room for improvement and that the sport of Flyball needs to keep evolving.  I am in favor of any changes that improve and/or make our sport safer and more efficient.

Meagan Langs:  I think we need to be open to exploring new and safer equipment and options for our dogs and people.   As a team captain I fully understand what it takes to buy equipment, haul equipment and replace equipment.  I also know that it will cost money, it will be more to carry, and it will be expensive.  Do I want to have to buy the equipment, build the equipment, or haul bigger heavier equipment?  No, I don’t.  However, my inconvenience is not more important than dog safety.  I have run on wider jumps as recently as last month at a flyball tournament.   I can promise you it was safer for the dogs.  Our dogs ran on the wider jumps one week and then attended another tournament on the usual smaller width jumps the following week.  Afterwards we discussed did we see any issue with the big jumps?  Did our dogs perform differently from one week to the next? Everyone I have talked to has only had positive things to say about the wider jumps.  Additionally, our dogs didn’t have any issues adjusting from the big jumps back down to the smaller width jumps the following week, the dogs seemed to adjust accordingly.  I believe the dogs will and could run faster on the wider jumps if given the opportunity to use them long term.  If you truly don’t believe wider jumps are safer take some time to review videos of dogs crashing over the jumps.  I am sure some instances you would still have injured dogs but if it decreases the amount of injury by even a few dogs isn’t it worth it?  As we all know sometimes crashes happen and there is literally nothing you as a handler, or a team member could have done to prevent it.   Anything we can proactively do to make the sport safer for the dogs is something we should seriously consider.   

Russell Evans: I like the idea of wider jumps and would like to see this become part of the racing standard. Like you, I’ve seen collisions from time to time and all reasonable steps must be taken to avoid them.

Regarding flyball boxes, Section 1.1 (e) (v) of the NAFA Official Rules of Racing, “Judges have the discretion to declare a box unsafe and therefore not usable” is a very important point. Boxes in poor repair should be excluded when a judge makes such a determination.

Question 4: Do you have any skills that could help the board (marketing, programming, accounting, etc.)?

Russell Evans: I’m formally trained in project management and have extensive experience with planning and writing.

Kathy Haney: Nothing specific, but I am willing to help out in whatever is needed and will put in every effort to build up our sport, making NAFA a welcoming, fun organization for people and their dogs

Meagan Langs: I am good at getting people excited about flyball, flyball tournaments, flyball practice, etc.  Regardless if I am captain or a team member I have been the “team communicator” for years. I think it is important to communicate with people in a positive way.  Find out what they are thinking, explain why certain things were decided, and let them know you hear them, even if what they are saying doesn’t fit with the plan right now.    

Emily-Rose Allred: I’m pretty infectious on social media. I think the board has done an amazing job the past few years getting flyball out there and can only hope to help grow the sport. I think continuing an online presence and making flyball accessible is so important. Racing is only fun if we have clubs to race! 

Getting to Know the Candidates 2022: Meagan Langs

My name is Meagan Langs and I have been playing our great sport for the past 15 years. In flyball I have participated as regional director, co-captain, and most importantly, a team member.  In my professional life I am a paralegal with extensive experience in assisting with drafting correspondence and various legal documents along with cross-functional expertise in social media, sales, management, training, and education. Prior to working in the legal field, I worked as a teacher for twelve years.  I strive to find ways to help increase productivity and efficiency with positivity.    

I live in Mesa, Arizona with my 4 dogs, 1 cat, and my husband Chris.  We have had a wide range of flyball dogs:  a rescue height dog, pure breeds and a purposely bred flyball mix.  My background helps me see the different perspectives people have within our sport.   I believe it is important to see the individual pieces that make up the big picture when making decisions as our sport moves forward and becomes more mainstream in the world of dog sports.     

Getting to Know the Candidates 2022: Kathy Haney

Hello all,

I would like to introduce myself once again to all of the NAFA community.  My first term on the NAFA  Board of Directors is coming to an end and I would appreciate the opportunity to continue working for this great organization.

Way back in 2001 I was watching a new station called Animal Planet and they just happened to be highlighting a dog sport called Flyball.  I had a ball crazy Lab/Boxer mix at the time and thought, “Oh wow, they invented a game just for my dog!”  It just so happened that there was a flyball team near me which was starting a new class.  We signed up and the rest is history.  I started my own club, Surf City Flyball, in 2008 and we have been running in Regions 6 and 16 ever since.  Our team consists of some very fast dogs and some not so fast dogs.  We love them all the same.  I started with a large “pet” dog and every dog I have gotten since then has been bought or adopted with Flyball in mind.  My latest dog happens to be a height dog and I think that having her has given me a much better perspective on the unique need to keep the height dog aspect of flyball intact.  Making sure the measuring process is easy and fair for everyone is very important to me.  I feel that I can bring some of our all inclusive viewpoints onto the Board so that we are sure to keep and attract participants with dogs of all shapes and sizes who want to have fun, but are not diehard competitors (at least not in the beginning).

 I have served as the Chairman of the Election Committee last year and have been on the Rules Committee as well.  I strive to be accessible to any and all members who have any questions or concerns and am always to willing to listen to what you have to say.  I appreciate that you trusted me the last time I ran for the Board and hope that you will give me your support this time.  Thank you,

Kathy Haney

Getting to Know the Candidates 2022: Russell Evans


Personal: Born in Honolulu, Hawaii, currently lives in Wheat Ridge, Colorado (Region 19). Married to Susi Evans (Launch Flyball) since 1983. One daughter, Jessica.

Work: Presently working for the State of Colorado as a System Administrator in the Office of the State Controller. I spent 22 years as a Windows software engineer for various ERP vendors and, before that, 12 years as a Security Specialist in the USAF. Attended University of Maryland, European Campus, focusing on Mathematics and Computer Science (major).

Flyball: First involvement with Flyball was as a box loader in 2004 and worked my way up to running dogs. I am very much involved with my wife in training all our dogs as well as club dogs. I run with Launch Flyball and love competing with my whippet Quid. We host 2 tournaments a year. I’d like to make a difference and have input in growing the sport and making it as safe and fun as possible for dogs and handlers.

Interests: Travel, writing, flyball.
Thank you
Russell Evans

Getting to Know the Candidates 2022: Emily-Rose Allred

My name is Emily-Rose Allred and I am running for the NAFA Board of Directors.  

I started playing Flyball in 2012 with my shelter mix Nova. She needed an energy outlet and loved a tennis ball. I googled “Dog sports” and found flyball. From my very first practice I was all in. I have never been a family person, but have been so blessed to have found my family within the flyball community. 

In 2018 I founded That’s So Fetch Flyball Club in Region 9. We started with 4 core members and have quickly grown to 12 active teammates with many wonderful dogs. In my day to day life, I am an administrative assistant for an outdoor lighting company and can be found pretty much 24/7 on the internet talking about flyball. 
I share my life with 7 dogs (and a husband) all of which have played flyball or are in training. From a French Bulldog to a sports mix, I am equal opportunity in my home and in my club for all people and dogs. 

I chose to run for the NAFA board because of my passion for the sport.  I would like to help promote our sport and help current competitors have the best time possible. My goals would be finding ways to open dialog between competitors, as well as make resources for captains who need help and feedback.  I know personally navigating as a Captain, I have needed support from many other Captains in my Region and wish there had been easier access to information or mentorship.  Most importantly, I would like to serve on the NAFA board because I would love to give back to the community that has given me so much.