About Our Association
The Houston Area Volleyball Officials' Chapter, or HAVOC, began in the early 1970's, probably 1972, as an outgrowth of a sports officiating class taught at University of Houston by Martha Hawthorne. The students in that class were being taught how to officiate volleyball, softball and basketball, and during the course Ms. Hawthorne approached some members of her class, Joy Dansby, Mary Ann Flores, and Susan Contine to tell them she was receiving calls from HISD looking for officials to call their matches, soon others joined these people, notably Diana Henigan, Kay Crabaugh, and Denise Williams, and from Lamar University, Sharon Richardson, to help officiate these matches.
Up to this time in many cases college volleyball players were being used to referee college and high school matches, because the high schoolers played in the spring, but when high school moved their season to the fall, these college players/officials could no longer do the job because their own seasons were interfering. Thus the need arose for an association of officials who would be doing the high school matches, and these people became our pioneers. Coaches from the districts began calling Ms. Hawthorne, and she gave out phone numbers, which created phone call havoc for these beleaguered officials at all hours of the day and night--which was the driving force behind the organization of HAVOC.
They first met at Westbury High, and came up with the name HAVOC as a quick solution to not only what to call themselves, but also what they planned to do to get on the volleyball map in Texas. Soon it became apparent that they needed to align themselves with a state agency, Texas Volleyball Officials Association, or TVOA. Linda Fletcher and others started TVOA about the same time HAVOC began, and remained a strong guiding force for volleyball in Texas along with Dorothy Brooks and Gloria Cox. Alignment with Southwest Officials Association became the next step, and many officials were calling matches for many districts. Mary Ellen Trahan was another early HAVOC person, and to this day we have several people who were instrumental in developing and nurturing HAVOC, including Mary Beth Phelps, Janice James, Kathy Tipton, Retta Pollio, Anne Marie Foster, Barbara Graham, and Howard Hanson.
The new group needed a scheduler, and the person who took the task on was Kay Hodges. Prior to that Kay Crabaugh did the scheduling, and the job's complexity increased with the increase in members and the increased number of schools utilizing HAVOC's services.
Volleyball was in full swing now, and Title IX passed, which kicked up girls' sports another notch. The game was moving quickly toward the power mode we see today, and HAVOC members tried to stay up with the fluid nature of the rules changes. But the Southwest Conference was disbanded in the 1990's so we affiliated with the Texas Association of Sports Officials, or TASO, which is where we stand today, with over 200 members in HAVOC and looking to grow more to keep up with the increasing number of schools and volleyball programs. Our original members have retired from officiating; however, there are currently 7 members with more than 30 years experience officiating for HAVOC. It is the fondest hope of HAVOC members that continued growth and excellence will go hand in hand for the future of girl's volleyball in Texas.
Contributors: Susan Contine, Sharon Richardson, Denise Williams