The SDCFOA: Meeting Our Officiating ‘Diversity Deficit’ Head On


Darrel Wheeler | Contributing Writer
Photos by Darrel Wheeler


The San Diego County Football Officials Association (SDCFOA) and Board of Directors member, Charlton Lynch, are trying to get more people of color involved in officiating. Charlton Lynch is the only Black board member of the organization, and he also serves on the recruiting committee for something he would like to change.

Charlton, a 20 year officiating veteran, and his colleagues are on a campaign to fix what they see as an alarming diversity issue.

“We want to reach out to the communities of Southeast San Diego to make them aware of all the officiating opportunities that we have,” shared Mr. Lynch

“The association is very flexible with personal schedules. We have several officials that coach football and other sports,” he said. “Also, about 80 percent of the association work day-time jobs, which allows a great opportunity to network.”

Charlton and his Officiating brethren are looking for a few good men and women that want to stay involved in youth and High School football, and enjoy a great opportunity to develop lifelong friendships and earn some extra income.


The SDCFOA has helped to develop some of the best officials in San Diego, including some with Southeast SD ties. Veteran whistle blowers Kipper Bell, Mike Andrews, George Conley and Mr. Lynch, to name a few good men.

“We are a non-profit 501 (C) that provides trained football officials for youth and High School Varsity Football games throughout San Diego County from Borrego to the border. This covers an enormous swath,” Recruiting and Retention Committee Chairman, Gary Gittelson, shared.

“A very interesting statistic indicates the average age of officials is in the mid-to-late 50’s and the number of officials is drastically decreasing Nationwide,” Gittelson said.

Charlton and the powers that be on SDCFOA’s board of representatives are ready and willing to face San Diego’s officiating diversity deficit head on. Officiating class’s start July 7th. For more information, you can contact Gary Gittelson at 760-213-8868.