COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. (March 4, 2019) – Nicky Nieves (Kissimmee, Florida), a member of the U.S. Women’s National Sitting Volleyball Team and member of the 2016 Paralympic Games gold-medal team, has been selected to the newly created World ParaVolley Athlete Commission.
Nieves, who has been part of the U.S. Women’s Sitting Team since 2011, has earned silver medals in consecutive World ParaVolley World Championships in 2014 and 2018. She and her 2016 Paralympic teammates were honored as with Team USA’s “2016 Best Paralympic Team” at the 2016 Paralympic Games.
“Being on this new commission means having the opportunity to give my community a voice,” Nieves said. “What resonates in my head is ‘No taxation, without representation’ and I get to be the voice that represents what is so important to me.”
The WPV Athlete Commission is a six-member team with one representative each from the four ParaVolley zones (Pan America, Asia/Oceania, Africa and Europe), one at-large member (Nieves) and one sitting volleyball representative. A seventh member will be elected to the WPV Athlete Commission in the near future to represent Beach Paralympics, a newer form of the sport that has three-member teams playing on sand.
Nieves is excited to lend her voice to the commission as a means to express new ideas to the World ParaVolley community.
“I love ideas that promote diversity and inclusion, so I’m excited to see new possibilities will arise,” Nieves said. “I’m just so excited to be on this commission, ready for anything that comes my way.”
Nieves started playing volleyball in 2002 for Life Academy Lions and later would earn conference player of the year honors her senior year in high school. She played one year of standing indoor volleyball with NCAA Division II Queens College (N.Y.) where she earned a degree in speech pathology in 2012. During the summers, Nieves works at a camp called Nuability Athletics where she teaches sports to children ages 5-18 with physical disabilities.
Jose Rebelo was elected by members of the Athlete Commission to serve as a chair and will represent athletes on the WPV Board of Directors. The vice-chair, which must be a female, will be elected soon and also represent athletes on the WPV Board of Directors.
“I’m very pleased that the World ParaVolley athletes have demonstrated a high level of engagement in the election process and that the newly elected members of the Commission will be actively involved in providing information and feedback to the Board and Commissions of World ParaVolley on a variety of matters from the perspective of an athlete,” WPV President Barry Couzner said.