Ultimate Impact launched in June 2016 to improve the lives of youth in underrepresented communities. The organization uses the team sport of ultimate Frisbee as the framework for providing boys and girls 6 to 18 years old with increased opportunities, confidence, communication abilities, and conflict-resolution skills. Through weekly training sessions, peer interaction, and consistent adult mentorship, Ultimate Impact creates a positive environment for youth to have fun, be active, improve athletic skills, and build community through the concept of a team.
Ultimate Frisbee (commonly know as "ultimate") is a fun, fast-paced, non-contact team sport that is low cost, easy to learn, and can be played anywhere. Ultimate is unique because it is governed by the self-officiating Spirit of the Game™ philosophy, making it a great educational tool for developing Social-Emotional Learning (SEL) competencies.
Partnering with local organizations that serve underrepresented youth, Ultimate Impact encourages participation, builds teams, and offers weekly instruction with experienced coaches and volunteers who have been trained in Ultimate Impact’s coaching techniques. Coaches work with the youth for up to two hours per practice session at least once a week. Additionally, youth attend scrimmages, tournaments, and other ultimate-related activities. Coaches also become part of the community fabric by building relationships with local leaders, teachers, school administrators, and parents.
Through these activities, youth gain the following:
- Social-emotional development
- Fun, fitness, and health development
- Ultimate Frisbee instruction and competition
Improve the lives of underrepresented youth through the sport and community of ultimate.
Program Pilot and History
The initial seed of Ultimate Impact was planted in 2010, when founder Rocky Beach retired from a top club team and wanted to give back to the sport that had helped him in so many personal, social, and professional ways. Through a landscaping project that he led while managing volunteer services for United Way of the Bay Area in 2006, Rocky connected with the Program Director at Hunters Point Family, located at Gilman Playground in Bayview-Hunters Point and launched a youth ultimate team there four years later as a volunteer.
The youth, ages 6-13, came from surrounding neighborhoods such as Double Rock, Alice Griffith, Oakdale, and Hilltop and all attended a summer and after-school program at Gilman Playground, near the former Candlestick Park in San Francisco. The kids have incredible stories of resilience. “Over the years it has been extremely rewarding to see the group progress, not just in ultimate, but also in life,” Beach says. “It’s exciting to see some of the first-year players already in high school and talking about going to college.”
In June 2016, Rocky decided to dedicate his creativity, time, and passion — along with his entrepreneurial spirit and program knowledge — to launch an ultimate Frisbee program modeled off his experience with underrepresented youth.
What is Ultimate Frisbee?
Played with a disc, or Frisbee, ultimate combines the nonstop movement, field spacing, sprinting, and athletic endurance of soccer with the aerial passing skills of football — all in a non-contact format. Players compete on a field with end zones similar to football, in teams of seven on grass and five on sand. Ultimate is a fast-growing sport, with an estimated 5 million current and former players in the US and more than 80K in the Bay Area. Most universities have club teams, and ultimate has been featured in the World Games as a medal sport since 2001, with a future as a possible Olympic event. Ultimate is unique because it is one of the few sports played at a high level in a co-ed format, along with women’s and men’s divisions.
Executive Director and Founder
Rocky has a background in entrepreneurship, youth development, nonprofit management, organization building, and coaching. Rocky spent nine years at United Way of the Bay Area, where he built their corporate volunteer program and managed the organization’s largest portfolio as a Director of Development. Rocky also served as the Director of Partnerships and Development for CODE2040, where he grew annual fundraising from $2M to $7.2M by securing partnerships with Apple, Intel, Google, Box, PwC, and other industry leaders.
In the spring of 2016, Rocky left his leadership role at CODE2040 to launch Ultimate Impact. He has a BA in International Business from the University of North Carolina at Wilmington, graduating magna cum laude. In 2007, the Chamber of Commerce selected Rocky as one of the 50 future leaders of San Francisco through his participation in the Leadership SF program. He is a member of the Board of Directors for the San Francisco Bicycle Coalition and is also a World Champion Ultimate Frisbee player.
Board of Directors
Christopher is a career software architect and engineer focused on distributed systems and the Java Virtual Machine. He is a world-champion Ultimate Frisbee player and helped to found the Cloud9 Men's Ultimate Frisbee team at Rice University. He believes in the ability of Ultimate to teach fundamental life-lessons and is proud to be a part of the mission for Ultimate Impact.
He is currently a staff engineer at Twitter, Inc. and serves as a lead of the @Blackbirds employee resource group focusing on increasing the representation of minorities in technology. Christopher’s day-job includes supporting many of Twitter's open-source projects and he is a co-creator and the maintainer of Twitter's open-source Scala services framework: Finatra.
Ultimate Impact’s mission of providing opportunity and teaching leadership and socio-emotional skills through Ultimate resonates deeply with Sam. Sports has been a powerful shaper of Sam’s life. She currently works at the Positive Coaching Alliance pursuing PCA’s mission of developing Better Athletes and Better People through youth sports. She is especially passionate about getting and keeping girls in the game.
Samantha Salvia is a championship athlete in two sports, Rhodes Scholar, water resources engineer, coach, and mother of two. At Old Dominion University she won an NCAA Division I National Championship in field hockey and became Old Dominion’s first Rhodes Scholar. As a civil engineer, Sam specialized in water resources planning, leading one of the largest water supply infrastructure projects constructed in California in the last two decades. She left engineering to focus on her family and her passion to use sports as a vehicle to change lives.
She discovered Ultimate while a graduate student at Oxford and for nearly two decades has played and coached, winning multiple national and world championships with San Francisco Fury. She recently returned from London where she captained Team USA Women’s Masters to a gold medal at the Ultimate Frisbee World Championships.
Upon graduating from UC Berkeley, Ryo joined Location Labs, a software company that makes mobile applications for parents and their families, as a project manager. A decade later, he continues his work at Location Labs as an executive, managing operations and development of family safety products for mobile carriers including Verizon, AT&T, Sprint, and T-Mobile. He is excited to utilize his experience to build cohesive teams that integrate effectively with parents and communities to to guide Ultimate Impact through its early stages.
As a former player and captain of 4 time national and 3 time world champion San Francisco Revolver, Ryo has had the privilege to see the inner workings of a successful team. Through this connection, he joins a fellow Revolver alum and new teammates to build a youth development program for underrepresented Bay Area communities.
Pat King has been an attorney with Simpson Thacher & Bartlett LLP for 23 years and is currently advising some of the largest and most successful Silicon Valley corporations in complex intellectual property disputes involving a vast array of technologies.
Before attending law school at Columbia University, Pat wrote several children’s books and is a recipient of the International Reading Association’s Children’s Choice Book Award. His musical compositions have appeared in films, on radio, and in television commercials and he is the co-author of Cupid’s Inferno, a musical produced Off-Broadway in New York City.
Pat is a founding member of the Dartmouth College ultimate team and the founder and captain of New York Ultimate, a club team in New York City that collected six national and four world championships. He remains active in the sport by coaching the men’s ultimate team at Santa Clara University. Pat is honored to help support Ultimate Impact in its effort to introduce young athletes in the communities it serves to a sport that promotes communication and respect among competitors.
Ultimate Impact is proud to partner with the Mayor’s Youth Employment and Education Program (MYEEP) to hire three youth as Junior Coaches to help support training sessions, provide mentorship to younger program participants, and learn critical career-building skills through project work. Ultimate Impact is thankful to have the energy and enthusiasm of the Junior Coaches!
Taleni is 15-years old and his favorite colors are red, black, and white. Taleni’s favorite sports are football, volleyball, baseball, basketball, and ultimate Frisbee. Taleni is from an island called Pago Pago in America Samoa. His favorite number is fourteen. He went to Visitacion Valley Middle School and that’s where he started playing ultimate Frisbee in September 2016 through Ultimate Impact. Taleni loves catching the disc in the air but his favorite part about ultimate is throwing. Another thing that he likes about ultimate is that you get to learn new things like cool throws and Spirit of the Game. One of Taleni’s best skills is making friends and connecting with new people. He volunteered for the Student Council at Vis Valley and used his skills to get people involved with sports and school activities. He was the captain of the Vis Valley ultimate team and he’s transferred those leadership skills into his summer job coaching younger kids how to play. Along with assisting training sessions, Taleni also manages the social media for Ultimate Impact.
Shanise recently graduated from Roosevelt Middle School and enjoys singing, gymnastics, dancing, cooking, playing baseball, softball, basketball, having fun with kids, and spending time with family. She decided to be a Junior Coach because she wants kids to believe in themselves. She enjoys coaching through Ultimate Impact because teaching kids puts a smile on her face, especially when she sees them happy and exercising. Shanise’s favorite thing about coaching younger kids is providing leadership and mentorship. She wants to be part of creating places where kids feel safe. Shanise wants to attend law school to become a lawyer and then one day a judge. Her dream is to be on the Supreme Court someday.
Izzy graduated from Visitacion Valley Middle School with a 4.0 GPA in the spring of 2016. Izzy enjoys studying how music, food, sleep, and exercise affect the human body and would like to study philosophy in college. Izzy also completed the full circle in music class which included playing the drums, bass, guitar, keyboard and singing. He enjoys playing the drums, writing poetry, and playing sports. Izzy plans to attend Mission High School. Fun fact is that Izzy won coolest hair award in 8th grade. Izzy wants to change the world and improve people’s lives. He admires Martin Luther King Jr because he made the equality movement for Blacks a reality. Izzy also admires Malcolm X because he was wise and wasn’t afraid to use freedom of speech to make a difference.