About the Alliance Council
Democracy in Sports
Mr. Drew Carey, the First Honorary Chairperson and creator of the Alliance, wanted to bring fan involvement to Seattle Sounders FC and made it a condition of joining the other owners of the Club. Fan involvement was realized with the creation of the Alliance and the Alliance Council: the entities involved in the feedback process with owners and the Front Office. “I’m very excited about what we’re doing here in Seattle,” said Carey. “Where else can the fans fire the general manager? I hope this becomes a model for every professional sports organization in America.”
Fans have a say in the direction of their Club, including a vote on retention or lack of confidence for the general manager every four years. The first general manager vote took place in the fall of 2012 at the end of the Major League Soccer season. In 2015, Adrian Hanauer replaced himself in the position of General Manager with Garth Lagerwey. At that time, the Alliance Council began deliberations regarding when the next vote of retention/no confidence should be held, along with a formalized recall process. The results of that work can be found here. The next regularly scheduled retention vote is 2022.
What Is the Alliance?
All Season Ticket Holders (Season Ticket Members) with multiple match packages purchased through the Sounders FC or their ticket partner are automatically members of the Alliance. The Alliance is more than a group of ticket holders: it is also the embodiment of our spirit and passion within the Sounders community. The Alliance is tasked with the General Manager Vote approximately every four years, a responsibility that is unique to the Seattle Sounders.
Provide Alliance members with a voice in the overall direction of the organization, including but not limited to the following:
- A vote on retention or lack of confidence in the Club’s General Manager approximately every four years
- The right to advise on the Club’s charitable contributions
- The right to advise on matters regarding game-day experience
- The right to advise on matters that primarily affect fan experience
What Is the Alliance Council?
The Council is the elected group of representatives, chosen by Alliance members to be the liaisons between the Alliance, the Front Office, and with ownership.
What is Mission of Alliance Council?
The Seattle Sounders FC Alliance Council strives to achieve the best fan experience in North American soccer and to build upon our historical foundation in order to preserve the Club we love. We do this by being the voice of the fan and by upholding the principles of Democracy in Sports.
How Do I Become a Member of Council?
You are elected to Council by nominating yourself at this page. Login to the same page and cast your own vote for yourself. Then gather votes from your fellow Alliance members. Council members need 25 votes from other Alliance members to sit on Council.
Are There Other Requirements to Serve on Council?
Council members need to be committed to the Council duties and meetings. Council members meet in the Pioneer Square area on the first Tuesday evening of each month, plus two or three meetings with owners, and the annual business meeting around season-end. Council responsibilities typically require fifteen minutes to two hours of focus and attention between meetings each month. Council member tasks typically involve creating web posts, blogging, social media posts, typing notes, emails, posting surveys, telephone communication, budgeting, marketing, and project management. Being a Council member does not require a lot of work, but it does require good time management, follow-through, and integrity. There will be situations where discretion and confidentiality are required for the collaborative process to work.
How Does the Council Voting Process Work?
Only Alliance members may vote for prospective Council members. Members wishing to run for Council will nominate themselves to Sounders FC via the Club’s online form. 25 votes must be received for the prospective Council member to be elected to Council. Candidates who receive their 25th vote on or before the last day of the sixth month in the Council’s business year begin their term immediately. Candidates who receive their 25th vote on the first day of the seventh month or later of the Council’s business year will begin their term in the following Council year. Currently, Council’s business year begins in December and ends in November. The end of the sixth month is the last day of May.
What Has Council Accomplished?
In 2016, Council negotiated for the return of the physical MatchPass, negotiated for realistic necklines on women’s jerseys, lobbied for an option for matchday programs to return in the 2017 season, requested clear bags for in the ticket package for 2017, and advocated for member access to the General Manager via a Chalk Talk post-match. We also made our respect for Coach Brian Schmetzer known to owners in August. In early 2015, with the hiring of a new General Manager, Alliance Council opened and reviewed rules surrounding the General Manager Vote and Recall Process to ensure that the club would always be in the position to hire the best candidate for the position. In 2012, Council members started planning the Alliance Scarf Design contests, which fans still enjoy. Council members helped create 2014’s Sounders 40th Anniversary celebrations and events. Council crafted a Constitution and Bylaws for the Alliance and requested a Charter from the club for future operations. These were ratified by general vote of the Alliance in 2011. Alliance Council members planned the 2009 Supporters Summit as part of the MLS Cup festivities. Members of Council have advised the club on game day experience decisions and help plan the annual business meeting.