In 1995 Mario “Mack” Alarcon was the third inductee into the Florida State Referees (FSR-FLSRC) Hall of Fame.
Mario H. Alarcon (Mack) was born in La Paz, Bolivia in 1931. Growing up he played soccer in the organized youth leagues until his departure to the United States in 1946. Since there was no soccer in Florida, he played high school basketball and football and was second team All Catholic Conference in both sports.
After returning from an Army active duty tour in 1957, he took the leadership of soccer and formed the first soccer league in the southeastern United States, the South Florida Soccer League and was the league’s first president for the next seven years. The league brought support for the formation of youth teams and youth leagues.
Mack arranged an invitation for the Cuban National Youth Champions, the Lawton Juniors, came to Miami for a visit which created vast publicity for all the youth programs. He was instrumental in obtaining funds from a grant given to adult soccer by the Kennedy Foundation so that the youth programs were given greater financial support. His friend Ray Thompson was able to hire ex-English League soccer coach and Canada National team coach Tom Hayes which caused a coach’s program to be organized. In 1963 he co-founded the Florida Youth Soccer Association and served as an officer until the year 2000.
Mack was instrumental in creating the Florida State Soccer Association for adult players in 1957 and was an active officer until 2012.
The first state referee program was organized, and the Florida State Referees (FSR) was born in 1964. He directed the Florida affiliation to US Soccer and became its first representative. There were no other states in the southeast affiliated at that time. Soccer was now a new sport in Florida and he conducted many clinics for referees, coaches, players, parents and administrators. Neighboring states were seeking his assistance. For his youth and adult soccer endeavors, he received the Key to the City of Miami on two occasions. In 1965, Mack, Fred Stauber, and Ray Thompson were the first three certified referees in the southeast registered with US Soccer.
Between 1963 and 1965 Mack served on the National Team Player Selection Committee for US Soccer.
In 1966 Mack began meeting with high school athletic directors and coaches to persuade them to adopt soccer as a new scholastic sport. He did the same with college level institutions to urge the addition of soccer in their athletic programs and encouraged all to support youth soccer since it would become a source for obtaining players at the college level. In 1968 he formed the first NISOA Florida chapter and served as president for 7 years. During 1972-1973 he was one of four to referee NCAA Division 1 finals and refereed several National Junior College finals.
Mack has written additional articles for Diario Las Americas, Miami Herald, Miami News, Touchline, Fair Play, Goal magazine, and others. Mack was commissioned to revamp the Florida Youth Soccer Associations Rules and bylaws on three separate occasions in a span of 22 years.
Mack was appointed to at least 20 regional and national youth tournaments as a lead referee instructor and/or lead referee assessor. He received an appointment from US Soccer as a National Referee Assessor being among the first group to graduate in the first course given by US Soccer and served in that capacity for over 25 years. He achieved the grade of National Instructor and served in that capacity for over 25 years also. The assignments as instructor and assessor gave him the opportunity to serve soccer at all levels by conducting clinics for ages youth and up.
Mack retired after 40 years military duty with the US Army and as a full-time officer in the US Army National Guard. He is a member of the following organizations:
National Guard Officers Association of the United States-Life Member and recipient of the US Legion of Merit Medal