WEEK #12: LISA TURBITT
Please tell us a little bit about yourself.
I began umpiring house league T-Ball at age 11. From those humble beginnings, I have now umpired at four International Baseball Championships including the Inaugural Women’s World Series in Toronto in 2001. I have umpired or supervised over 20 Baseball Canada National Championships, including Senior Men, Canada Summer Games, Baseball Canada’s – Blue Jays Tournament 12. I am a part of a number of committees or groups that help to grow or develop umpiring at various levels within Ontario and Canada. For 2019, I have been appointed Umpire Director of WBSC (World Baseball Softball Confederation) U-12 Baseball World Cup to be held in Taiwan.
In 2004, I received the Baseball Canada Dick Willis Umpire of the Year Award, becoming the first female recipient of the award.
In 2015, I was appointed to the WBSC (World Baseball Softball Confederation) Umpiring Commission. Since that time I have been the Umpire Director for 3 International Championships. This was the first time a woman served as the Umpire Director at an International Baseball Tournament.
I played fastball, baseball, ball hockey and volleyball growing up and I still play fastball today! I have also coached fastball, baseball and volleyball. I have also done a number of half marathons, mini-triathlons and I love to cycle.
I am an elementary school teacher and currently work as our school’s Teacher-Librarian. My school is a part of the Ontario Eco-Schools program. We are a Platinum Eco-School. As a school community, we work towards being a more sustainable school.
I think sports and opportunities for leadership are important for young people, especially for girls/women.
Please share a story about an internal or external barrier you have faced? How did you overcome that barrier?
When I was younger, I wanted to attend the higher level umpire training. I was sent home two years in a row. I was told I could not attend due to my age, but boys my age were allowed to take the training. I could continue to umpire the lower levels. I didn’t let that deter me. I went back each year and finally took that training and continued to advance to higher levels.This was a pivotal moment, I could have given up, as many people have told me that they would have. However, I would not be where I am today if I had given up every time I had an obstacle or challenge before me. Giving up or quitting is never an option. I have to find a way to overcome. Whether it was hard work, perseverance, inner strength, additional training, I did whatever it took to overcome.
What skills did you develop in sport that helped you overcome your barrier?
Strength, Goal Setting, Working as a Team, Leadership, Endurance. Sports develops so many skills that are essential to the sport but also outside of the sport.
If you had one word to describe your character, experiences or philosophy what would it be? Why?
Fight for what you want. There will be challenges and difficulties while pursuing a dream. However, how we rise to overcome these challenges is the key. Dealing with obstacles that may be in the way…Giving up is NOT an option. Stay strong – Persevere.