Still making the sport better
Half Moon Bay High School graduate Julio Serrano has been appointed to efforts to lead Hispanic coaches as they navigate the world of soccer. Review file photo

Coastsiders and Half Moon Bay High School alumni remember Julio Serrano, the former girls varsity soccer coach. Serrano, who currently resides in Illinois, is the epitome of a passionate coach, advocating for his players each game, and now he’s working across the country to make the sport more inclusive.

Last October, Serrano was named the new chair for the Latino Coaches Advocacy Group as well as being a member of the United Soccer Coaches Advocacy Council. Serrano, one of the 13 council members from various organizations’ advocacy groups, will build a team from the Latino coaching community and represent them on a national level.

The organization’s purpose is to provide coaching tools, experience and a network at the youth, college and professional soccer levels.

In addition to coaching at Half Moon Bay High School, Serrano was also a youth development coach with the Palo Alto Soccer Club during his time in California.

Serrano moved to Illinois last year and is working with Illinois Youth Soccer on coaching education and Olympic development programs. His passion for coaching started when he was a student at Half Moon Bay High School when he volunteered with a local soccer club. Serrano spoke of “translating the system,” which he described as teaching Latino coaches the process of becoming better coaches. Providing resources and celebrating accomplishments are key components of the infrastructure, proponents say.

“It’s additional training and opening up more pathways,” Serrano explains. “I think that’s important because a lot of our Latino coaches are very experienced, great coaches and great people, but don’t know how to navigate the system.”

The group creates a network of support for coaches across the nation. Recruiting and promoting Latino membership is the name of the game, whether it’s through grants, education or advocacy. As a coach, Serrano enjoys helping others discover their potential and passion for the game.

“With the position I’ve been chosen to be in, I definitely want to be able to share, mentor, educate and inspire them to become better coaches and people,” he said.

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