UPSL Strengthens Academy and Women Divisions with New Hires

March 21st, 2024

In support of the rapidly growing Academy and Women divisions, the United Premier Soccer league has made two key additions to its staff. Chris Mejia has been named National Director, Academy & Women and Joe Janner has been named Assistant Director, Academy & Women.  

Mejia, who also serves as the UPSL’s Conference Manager in Oregon, brings to the UPSL 30 years of soccer coaching experience, as well as 3 years of experience on the Board of Directors for the Oregon Youth State Association. Mejia also holds a degree in business administration as well as certificates in leadership, management/supervision, human resources, and project management.  

Meija shared his thoughts regarding his new role in the UPSL.  

“Building upon both the Academy and Womens divisions helps create a well-rounded, full year soccer experience for all players aged 12 to adults, regardless of gender, ensuring nobody is left out. Our goal is to continue building upon the growth of our well-established Men’s divisions across the country.” 

Janner, who also serves as the UPSL’s Conference Manager in the Midwest South, is currently a director at Kansas City Surf Soccer Club in Kansas City, Missouri. Janner brings a wealth of knowledge that includes 12 years of managing, coaching and scouting in soccer, including working with the Borussia Dortmund International Academy and scouting at the collegiate level for Sports Recruiting USA. 

With years of experience in the sport, Mejia and Janner will work with the conference managers to navigate the growth of both the UPSL Academy and UPSL Women. 

Spring seasons for both the Academy and Women will kick off in the coming weeks with applications still open for academy soccer teams and women’s teams across the country. Interested teams are encouraged to visit For further information on all UPSL divisions, please visit