Foundation for Interscholastic Youth Athletics or FIYA (pronounced FEYE yuh) was formed in August 2011 as a 501c3 nonprofit corporation. It serves as a governing body to provide interscholastic sports competitions amongst elementary schools with a special focus on middle schools in the Los Angeles area. The founders believe that offering sports in an interscholastic setting provides children at the critical ages of 10 to 14 an optimal combination of learning core values, staying physically active, and making the educational experience fun and rewarding. Consequently, FIYA’s mission is strengthening schools through sports.
While participation is open to any elementary or middle school, FIYA focuses on working with schools in economically disadvantaged areas. FIYA has served over 10,000 student athletes and 300 school teams in its first four years. FIYA’s goal is to have 200 elementary schools throughout Los Angeles County within the next five years. FIYA desires to offer a variety of sports offerings so that every student will have an opportunity to participate in interscholastic sports. Currently, FIYA provides the following: flag football, volleyball, cross country, table tennis, bowling, basketball, golf, spirit, archery, soccer and track & field.
John Mueller is the Executive Director of FIYA. John graduated from UCLA in 1988 with a Bachelor of Arts degree in English and from the University of Michigan Law School in 1991 with a Juris Doctorate degree. He has been involved in the administration of youth sports since 2000. From 2006-2011, he served as Associate Director of the Catholic Youth Organization in Los Angeles involving over 180 Catholic elementary schools. During his tenure, he greatly expanded CYO’s sports offerings and student participation, oversaw its grant writing development and organized the coaching certification program. John also serves as the Athletic Director at St. Jerome School in Westchester. In addition to being responsible for the school’s after school athletic program, John continues to organize interscholastic competitions involving many of the neighboring Catholic schools.
Nicholas Galvan is the Director of Development of FIYA. Nicholas graduated from California State University, Northridge in 2003 where he received a Bachelor of Arts degree in Psychology. In 2004, Nicholas obtained his real estate license and was responsible for the development and expansion of NSG Enterprises, Inc., a real estate company that he founded that same year and ran successfully until 2013. Nicholas also served as the Director of Landlord Advertising for Westside Rentals where he managed a successful sales team of twenty direct reports. Nicholas’ passion for youth sports began at St. Augustine Catholic School in Culver City while serving as Athletic Director from 1999-2004. Since then Nicholas has remained involved with youth athletics by coaching in the California Interscholastic Federation, Delphic League, Valley Catholic League and Catholic Youth Organization, for which he received the 2010-2011 Catholic Youth Organization’s “Coach of the Year” Award.
John Farren is the Director of Operations of FIYA. John is a native of New City, New York and a graduate of Boston College, where he received a Bachelor of Arts degree in Philosophy in 2000. Upon arriving in Los Angeles after graduation, he quickly became involved in youth sports as a coach at St Augustine School in Culver City. In 2004 John became the Physical Education teacher and Athletic Director at the school, the latter a role he held until 2013. From 2005-2011 John worked at the Catholic Youth Organization of Los Angeles as its Program Manager, overseeing the day to day operations of a program which serves over 180 grammar schools throughout Los Angeles County. John helped expand the athletic opportunities at CYO by (1) creating and overseeing new events such as bowling, cross country, golf and soccer, and (2) implementing a new level of competition for 2nd, 3rd, and 4th grades.