An announcement was made yesterday that Brent Rasmussen elected as first sitting volleyball representative to USA Volleyball Board of Directors. Last summer, the board decided to add a Sitting Volleyball Athlete representative position, with the criteria being that to be eligible, a person had to have been a member of the national team in the past ten years.
Lori Okimura, chair of the USA Volleyball Board of Directors, was quoted in regards to his selection as saying, “The addition of Brent Rasmussen to the USA Volleyball Board of Directors is an important step towards giving our men’s and women’s sitting volleyball teams a strong voice, and enhancing our role as the official governing body of sitting volleyball. […] His perspective and representation of sitting volleyball will be a wonderful complement to an already diverse Board. We are all very eager to start working with Brent to keep supporting the success of the sitting teams as we approach the Paralympic Games in Rio 2016.”
Rasmussen was a member of the United States men’s national sitting volleyball team from 2003 to 2011, and competed at the 2004 Summer Paralympics in Athens where he was the team captain. His team came away with a bronze at those Games. Rasmussen is quoted as saying of his selection to the board, “After 10 years of playing sitting volleyball and seeing the results the men’s and women’s team have progressed to, I am ecstatic to have the U.S. Sitting Teams be included under USA Volleyball […] Seeing and experiencing the growing pains the Sitting Program has endured and conquered, I look forward to bringing my experiences to the Board of Directors to take the program to the next level.”
The volleyball player has been active in other disability sports. Originally a baseball player before an accident in 2002 that resulted in losing part of his foot, he took up wheelchair softball and played for the Nebraska Barons wheelchair softball team. He helped guide his team to the 2003 National Wheelchair Softball Tournament while setting a number of records. Continuing with the sport, he was inducted into the National Wheelchair Softball Hall of Fame in 2013.
Outside of sport, Rasmussen is the president of the Omaha based Mortgage Specialists, LLC. He also works as a motivational speaker.