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Spring 2021 Season is Underway!

Santa Monica Baseball Tradition Since 1950

Board Of Directors 2020 / 2021


Michael Balsley[email protected]
Vice President 

Rich Hill
[email protected]
Chief of Umpires

Jose Nuño
[email protected]

Tamara Anderson
[email protected]

Sean Heirigs
[email protected]

Eric Mirich
[email protected]

David Jurenka
[email protected]
Player Agent

Noah Graff
[email protected]

Michael Kadish
[email protected]
Safety Officer

Peter Riche
[email protected]

Susan Patelson
[email protected]
Snack Shack

Elisabeth Perez
[email protected]

Michael Waterstone

[email protected]

Rick Eastland
[email protected]

Jasan Sherman
[email protected]

2020-2021 Board of Directors Candidate Bios

Board of Directors Candidates 2020-2021

July 14, 2020 Election

1. Tamara Anderson

With two boys obsessed with baseball in the house, it is hard not to join in all the fun! While I never
played Little League baseball or softball as a child, I spent my life playing many sports and was a
Division I volleyball player at the University of Virginia. My older son began playing Little League in
Coach Pitch and his little brother shortly followed suit. After several exciting seasons, I have truly
appreciated the opportunity to watch my boys gain confidence, create long-lasting friendships, and
improve their knowledge of the game.

Seeing how much my kids have enjoyed each season and knowing they have many years to participate in SMLL,
I would like to remain on the Board in order to propel its continued success and continue to make our League one
of the strongest in California.  Little League provides so many benefits to children and parents alike, which inspires
me to be of service in any way that I can. I am excited for the possibility participating for another year on the
SMLL Board and helping to ensure that all children continue to be afforded the chance of experiencing
the magic that is Santa Monica Little League. Thank you for your consideration!

2. Michael Balsley

Hello, my name is Michael Balsley and I have been involved with SMLL since 2008 as a coach,
manager, parent, fan, and Communications Director on the Board of Directors. This past year I served
as our President, and has it been one heck of a year.

At this time last year, my hopes were to develop a passionate core of volunteers who could expand post
season success and player development, deepen community development within the city of Santa
Monica, prioritize balanced teams, support a dynamic and successful All-Star and post season
program, focus more attention on developmental and junior divisions, and better celebrate the
community-building values of Little League baseball. We were also well on the way to laying
groundwork for a new Memorial park, a project 20 years in the making, that SMLL and local diamond
sports advocates finally got off the ground. Things were looking up.... then we all sheltered in place for
the next four months.

In the past three months, we have fought hard for youth sports and for our kids, holding out hope and
creating the structures that could be there if and when we were safe to return. We are all still holding
our breath for normal. I would consider it a privilege to continue to work for the kids who love baseball
and serve another year with this fantastic board of like-minded volunteers.

I love baseball and hope to give back to the league that has served my three sons so well for over a
decade. Thank you for your consideration, as I hope to serve everyone to the best of my abilities.

3. Rick Eastland

I was born in Santa Monica over 40 years ago and grew up playing baseball on the east coast. I love
this game, and I love this city.

My son’s little league journey began at Memorial with tee-ball in 2015. The next season, I reluctantly
checked the willing volunteer box on the application, and I’m so glad I did that. I’ve since served as
Head Coach for 6 SMLL teams, including the 2018 AA Champions.

I strive to give our kids an opportunity to fall in love with and show their passion for the game in a
safe and fun environment. This league has rewarded my family with many great baseball memories
and lasting friendships, and I believe that another year of board service is the best way I can give back
to the organization that has given me and my family so much.

4. Noah Graff

I have been part of Santa Monica Little League for the past ten years, having Managed from T-Ball
through Juniors and several All-Stars seasons. I have always considered baseball and, specifically,
Little League to be an important part of the community. It's such a beautiful game, and coaching my
son and other kids has brought me great joy. I also have served as Commissioner of AA, AAA, and
Majors, and worked closely with different Player Agents. Over that time, I came to understand that a
smooth season and ease of play cannot happen without the diligent efforts and care of the Board,
especially the Player Agent. One of the most important roles of the Player Agent is to act as the player
advocate and first point of contact for any player issue. I know how important this is, and do not make
this commitment lightly. I look forward to the opportunity to help ensure our players have a good

5. Sean Heirigs

Hi my name is Sean Heirigs. I am the proud father of a 12u Santa Monica little leaguer, Aaron Heirigs.
We have been involved with SMLL since Aaron was 8. I am completing my fourth year as the
Equipment Director on the Board of Directors. I also have “assisted” with most of the teams my son
has played on and love every aspect of the game, the kids, the families, the coaches and the spirit of
the community.

I was a manager for my oldest daughter’s T ball team at a different league and assisted her teams all
the way up to high school. Last year we went to Nationals with that team. I also assisted with my 11-
year-old daughter’s team in Santa Monica Girls Fast Pitch and had success in getting girls that have
never played before to achieve to their potential ability in hitting, catching, throwing and even making
plays, and having lots of laughs.

I value the time I spend with my children and hold that as a top priority in my life. My goal with every
kid that I have coached (boy or girl) is to have fun, learn the game, be a better athlete than you were
yesterday, work hard, make friends, exhibit good sportsmanship and not to forget to along the way to

Fundamentals, structure, integrity and building friendships are very important to me. Santa Monica
baseball has given us so much happiness and memories to last a lifetime, and I would strive for
everyone to have the same opportunities that it has given us. I feel like I can contribute to Santa
Monica little league if given the opportunity to stay on the Board of Directors in some capacity.
Thank you for your time and consideration.

6. Rich Hill

When my family and I moved to Santa Monica in 2015 from San Francisco, we shuddered at all the
Dodger blue. Despite our preference for orange and black and a challenging work schedule, a long-
standing member on the SMLL Board welcomed us to SMLL with sincerity, accommodation, and a
challenge. "Sure, we can assign your son to a team, but if you could manage a team, then we'd help
with the equipment, practice space, and uniforms. And it would allow more kids to play
baseball." Yeah, isn't that what it's all about...get more kids playing baseball.

I have coached an SMLL team for the past four seasons starting with coach-pitch and have just
concluded a third machine-pitch season, as well as my second year on the SMLL Board, the first of
which was as Safety Officer, the second of which is as Vice President. The experience has been
incredible. My son is eight and he and a couple teammates have played together on my teams since
the beginning. They have developed into better ball players and better people through exercise, drills,
and working toward a central goal. Baseball provides so many opportunities for life lessons and skills
and SMLL provides the opportunity for baseball. I'm eager to help SMLL continue to grow and to
promote the love of the game to the next generation of players.

7. David Jurenka

This is my 5th year serving as a head coach in SMLL, including managing 8 different teams across
Spring and Fall leagues. I’ve had the immense pleasure of coaching my 3 children’s teams 20+ times
in the past 9 years (Seattle, Manhattan Beach, Santa Monica) across baseball, softball, soccer, and
basketball. The opportunity to coach my children and their teammates has truly been the privilege of
a lifetime. Growing up, I played multiple sports, including baseball from as far back as I can
remember, throughout high school, and into college (football). When led by those who can see beyond
the field, sports can serve as a powerful vehicle to teach invaluable life skills. Commitment, discipline,
respect, teamwork, friendship, competition, and fun to name a few. I have done my best to impart
these same elements while coaching. My goal in joining the SMLL Board is to serve my community
beyond coaching so that our families, and especially our children, can continue to have a high-quality
experience on and off the field. I respect the efforts by those that have served and continue to serve
on the SMLL Board and would welcome an opportunity to serve in the future. Thank you for your

8. Michael Kadish

I have been involved in youth baseball for more than 10 years. Prior to joining SMLL, I coached 10
to12 year-olds in the Maccabee Baseball League of Greater Los Angeles. For the last six years, I
have managed SMLL teams in the 5-Pitch, Machine Pitch, AA and AAA divisions and coached in
our league’s Majors division. I also presently serve on SMLL’s Board of Directors as its Fields
Director, after having served for one year as the Sponsorship Director.

I am passionate about the game and dedicated to ensuring all children, of all skill levels, have a
positive baseball experience. I am especially proud that our league provides the financial resources
to families in need whose children might not be otherwise be able to play but for the league’s
assistance. If re-elected to SMLL’s Board of Directors, it is my intent to continue to grow our
sponsorship and development programs to help ensure no child is denied the opportunity to play the
game I so love.

9. Eric Mirich

As a father of three boys (Mathew: 10, Nicholas: 7 and Ryan: 2), I've been a volunteer in the SMLL for
the past 6 seasons. I've managed both coach pitch and machine pitch and assisted in all divisions up
to and including AAA. I was an assistant coach for the U10 West All-Star Team and I’m currently the
manager of the AAA Cubs. I also am in my third year on the SMLL Board of Directors, having served
as the Equipment Director and the Events Director.

My love for the game stems back to my youth growing up in Northwest Indiana. I have many fond
memories of spending entire summers at the ball field watching game after game while gorging on
pizza and candy from the concession stand. My career took me from Little League, to Babe Ruth, to
Legion and High School Baseball and, along the way, I encountered numerous coaches and players
that taught me so many valuable lessons. I learned to appreciate the game of baseball, to respect my
teammates and opponents alike and to play the game with humility and pride. Baseball, without a
doubt, is the one sport that has had the greatest impact on my adult life.

With the opportunity to continue to serve on the SMLL Board, I want to share my knowledge and
passion for the game with the current generation of baseball players. I want to be part of a community
that teaches good sportsmanship and rewards fair play. I want Memorial Park to be a home away from
home. And I want my boys to share the same fond memories that I cherish so much from my youth.

10. Jose Nuño

I have been involved with Santa Monica Little League as a player since 2008, and as an umpire since
the spring of 2012. I have also served SMLL as a coach for 2 seasons and am concluding my second
year as the Chief of Umpires on the Board of Directors. I have also run several pitching clinics
throughout the years. Since becoming an umpire, it has evolved into not just a job, but a passion and
new classroom of opportunity. In 2015, I joined the District 25 umpire staff and started working games
in multiple leagues. In 2016, I umpired All-Star tournaments at the district, section, sub-division, and
state level. Beginning in 2017, I also joined the National Federation of High School Umpires for the
City Section of Los Angeles. I have spent years studying the rules, interpretations of rules, in game
handling techniques, and proper officiating mechanics. Continuing in my position on the Board
represents an opportunity for me to raise the level of officiating for all the participants in SMLL.
Stronger levels of officiating would lead to smoother games, as well as a better trust and communication
between all parties on and off the field.

11. Susan Patelson

Our family has been involved in Santa Monica youth sports since our son was in T-K. We have been
with SMLL since T-Ball along with AYSO and other school/city sponsored sports. I was the division
commissioner for three years at AYSO. My husband has always volunteered with coaching for SMLL
for Logan’s teams. In addition to being an assistant on Logan’s team this year, he was a head coach
for a “Coach-Pitch” team in SMLL. I have been the official scorekeeper for our son’s teams for the past
three years. We are an extremely active and involved family and try to instill in our son the value of
team sports, commitment and giving back. This past year I participated on the SMLL Board as Safety
Director – ensuring that all volunteers had background checks, received appropriate safety training
and updated our safety manual to be compliant with Little League International standards. I want to
remain involved on the SMLL board and provide any help to our league as possible.

12. Elisabeth Perez

Hi, my name is Elisabeth Perez. I have been involved in SMLL for 13 years. This past year I served in
my second year on the Board as the Concessions Manager. The job was so rewarding and I feel I was
able to institute many ideas that I have had while sitting in the stands. The Snack Shack had
an amazing year and now offers some healthy options. I instituted a “Snack Pack” program to help
busy parents provide snacks for their teams and at the same time earn more revenue for the Shack. I
also began to dig into the Fan Wear realm and hope to expand this in future years. I am still so
passionate about the league although my children have both aged out. We are a baseball family and
have been through a lot of wins, a couple of championships and many losses through our years at
Memorial and being here has taught us all so much. I look forward to another year full of opportunities
to contribute. I hope I can continue to have an impact on a community that I love so much and has
given so much back to my family.

13. Peter Riche

I grew up in West Los Angeles, and have lived in Santa Monica for over 26 years.  Memorial Park is
my family's second home. 

Youth sports, baseball specifically, have always played a special role in my life as well as my family's. 
I grew up and played many years of baseball, soccer, and football. Since my son was 5 years old, I have
actively been a manager, coach, co-coach and volunteer for SMLL.  I am rarely ever as happy as when I
am on a baseball field.  Volunteering, contributing to the league and the community has brought great joy
to my family and to me.  I love the game of baseball.  I love teaching baseball, sportsmanship, values,
character, integrity, team play, and subliminally instilling the similarities that life and baseball have in common.  
My mantra has always been, "Did your child have fun?  Did they learn and improve?  Do they want to play
again next year? If the answers are yes, that is the best win of all."  

As stated earlier, the Santa Monica community, the league, the players, the parents have all given so much
to my son Jesse, and my family.  Being on the board is another way for me to continue to give back, and have
a voice in helping to evolve the league for future parents and players.

I hope that I am given the opportunity to be a member of the SMLL Board, and to contribute to the future of the
players, the parents, the league, and of our community.  

Thank you for your time and your consideration.

14. Jasan Sherman

I have been involved in SMLL for six seasons, since my son was in T-Ball. I have coached and managed
several teams, including Spring, Fall Ball and Summer programs and was just elected to my third
year coaching an All-Star team. My son is now headed to Juniors. I am in
my sixth year on the Board, having served as President for five years and now as the Uniforms
Director. It has been a pleasure to be part of the SMLL community. I have a passion for teaching the
kids to develop their skills as well as a true love for the game. I believe that Little League offers so
many valuable life lessons beyond just the game. Little League is a great place for kids to learn how
to have fun, work hard, be part of a team and develop confidence. It's an honor to work with the other
parents on the Board. I look forward to continuing to serve and working together to build an even
stronger community for everyone.

15. Michael Waterstone

My name is Michael Waterstone. My wife, Julie, and I have three children: Ava (13), Jack (11), and
Sammy (5). I have enjoyed coaching my sons throughout their Little League experience (and my
daughter in SMGF), from t-ball all the way through helping out in Majors. I love that our league
creates a sense of community, bringing people from all over Santa Monica together. SMLL creates
friendships and bonds for players and families that span from elementary school until high school.
As a coach and volunteer and now after finishing my first year as the Sponsorships Director on the
SMLL Board, I have always had a simple philosophy: everyone should have fun, learn some baseball
skills, and most importantly, want to play again next season. If elected to serve on the Board for
another year, I would continue to do my best to ensure that everyone’s experience is a good one, and
that our league is run in a fair, inclusive, manner that continues to bring our community together.

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Santa Monica, California 90408

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