Meet TallyHussy – the June 2014 Winner of the Gold Star Award for Excellence in Volunteering. Hussy was nominated by a fellow official and we’re thrilled to get to speak with her about her extensive time with the league! In addition to this award, she’s also been voted Oregon’s best Non Skating Official (NSO) two years in a row.
This experience is a bit bittersweet as the Champs bout will be her last with us since she’s moving to another state to explore new adventures. We’ll miss her, but wish her nothing but the best in her future endeavors.
Do you remember your first Rose City Rollers bout? Where and when?
My very first bout was in Buffalo, NY. It was the Nickel City Knockouts versus someone in 2008. I had decided to learn to ref and bought all the gear, then I decided to move to Portland, sold my gear except my skates and moved here in June of 2010. My first bout was in August of September of 2010 and I’d already contacted the league to start as a non-skating official. It was at the Hangar and I got Rockstar tickets, because I didn’t know what the venue would be like. I sat next to the couple that had Season Tickets 1 and 2, but have no recollection of who played.
I didn’t know about a lot of other options and had reffing in mind from before, so I just sought out Rose City’s program. I’m glad because officiating provided more opportunities to travel and meet people from other places.
Why have you stayed involved with RCR?
Oh, maaaan. It’s my family! I moved to Portland in June of 2010 and only knew my grandparents. I came and learned things and had fun. It’s what I was doing while I lived in Portland. I’ve enjoyed watching the growth and change in the league and I’ve met awesome people.
What was your favorite volunteer experience?
Oh Mylanta. There’s no way. I don’t have Kill Nye’s crazy memory. It’s one big derby glob. There were 25 events between January and June just this year. Probably the most altering was the trip to Denver for championships. It’s a mixed bag but the opportunity to travel with ten other RCR people to introduce Rinxter to the derby world – that’s what I like to hold onto. That and meeting Plastik Patrick at the Montreal bout. He kissed my cheek.
What has being in RCR volunteer meant to you?
It’s hard. It’s meant I have a place to go every Wednesday and every bout weekend. I met some of my dearest friends, gotten hugs from amazing athletes, and got called mom and it was okay.
Do you have a favorite team? Skater? Official?
I have a really hard time watching derby, so no favorite team because I don’t watch often. I will always bleed a little purple for Wheels of Justice. Of course Soulfearic Acid and White Flight — seeing the play was mind blowing and amazing. They helped me form a way to watch and learn. For officials, there’d be a lot of names to list. Kill Nye holds a place in my soul — he’s my derby Partner in Crime. Bipola Lola is an amazing ref to work with. From the moment I met her it was true love.
How has RCR changed since you began volunteering?
The culture for sure. There is a lot more respect for officiating. The biggest change I’m most proud of is that it is now “thank you officials,” instead of “thank you refs.” That has also spread to PMRD [Portland Men’s Roller Derby].
There’s also additional support. Not just in the skater culture, but in the officiating crew, too. We [the officiating crew] recently went back and watched the first 4×4 at the Coliseum. I don’t remember working with 90% of those people, but there’s been a great shift where we’ve become friends. It took white a few months to meet people when I started. It’s more welcoming to volunteer now.
Any suggestions for new volunteers or those considering volunteering with RCR?
There are a shit ton of opportunities in RCR. If you come in to do something and realize you have skills somewhere else, go to the thing you want to do. Dont’ settle for “just being.” Officiating requires more of you.
And whatever you’re doing, fight for what will make your job easier, but also for what you need to do your best.
Just “thank you.” Thank you for letting me be a loud mouth bossypants and for encouraging me to do things.