What is Ann Arbor Ultimate?
Ann Arbor Ultimate (or A2Ultimate, or A2U) is an all-volunteer organization dedicated to growing the ultimate community in Ann Arbor, MI. Also known as Ann Arbor Ultimate Summer League, the organization was formed in the summer of 1994. The first summer league featured a handful of teams playing all games on one field at Lakewood Elementary School.
Since those humble beginnings, Ann Arbor Ultimate has grown steadily, adding more players and teams. In 2016, we had over 600 unique individuals spread out over 87 teams across all of our leagues and divisions. Among the priorities of the organization are spirited play and participation by all. New and experienced players play alongside each other with common goals of learning the sport, socializing, and above all else, having fun.
At the top of the Ann Arbor Ultimate organization sit the board of directors. These 5 directors are charged with shaping the league and providing direction. Other volunteers help the league by serving as treasurer, running the captain's committee, or by organizing tournaments and clinics. And last but not least, we lean heavily on our league captains to help make games and teams run smoothly. Ann Arbor Ultimate could not function without these volunteers, and we are very grateful for each and every one.
We are always on the lookout for more volunteers or fresh ideas, so please let us know if you would like to help.
For other issues, contact us.
Our Vision and Mission
Ann Arbor Ultimate (A2U) strives to form a socially welcoming community that values spirit and learning for players of all identities and experiences. To these ends, A2U provides consistent and accessible playing options, as well as social events, learning opportunities, and community support.
To learn more, check out our extended mission and vision online here.
Who Are We?
As previously stated, Ann Arbor Ultimate is an all-volunteer organization. We simply could not function without the support of all involved whether they are a player, a captain, or a volunteer on one of our committees.
Board of Directors
At the top of the organization, the Board of Directors oversees the financial health and long-term planning of Ann Arbor Ultimate by coordinating leagues, events, and budgets. The board is composed of 5 people and meets throughout the year. You can get in touch by sending a message to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Victor Arena was first infected by ultimate frisbee circa 2002 when a buddy said "Hey, do you want to come to practice and check out ultimate frisbee? It's over in Southfield." One practice quickly evolved into a passion. After moving into the greater Ann Arbor area towards the end of 2005, Victor played with local club teams, both mixed and open. As the years passed, he dabbled in different leadership roles, played in different leagues around the state, and even had a stint in Cleveland! He is looking forward to adding to the greater think tank and working with the league as a director. He was appointed to the Ann Arbor Ultimate Board of Directors in 2019.
Rachel Cawkwell started playing ultimate at Emory University in 2010. She still primarily (and proudly) wears her Luna gear at league. In Ann Arbor, she’s had the opportunity to play on two different club teams, captaining the mixed team Rocket Lawnchair in 2017 and playing on the women’s team Autonomous in 2018. She is a graduate student at University of Michigan studying English Language and Literature and will never turn down a conversation about books. She was appointed to the Ann Arbor Ultimate Board of Directors in 2018.
Ryan, a software developer by trade, started playing ultimate in 2008 in the Ann Arbor Ultimate Summer League. He began his club career in 2012 as a member of the mixed team Sidecar!. Since then, he has captained two mixed club teams, Handlebar and Pile-Up, played on one mixed club team, Rocket Lawnchair, and has played in the open division with Spoiler and Mango Tree. He was appointed to the Ann Arbor Ultimate Board of Directors in 2013 and also serves as the web designer, developer and admin.
Sara was first introduced to ultimate during her junior year of high school when her AP chemistry teacher decided ultimate would be more fun to teach than chemistry. She was unaware that there was actually strategy involved until she joined Ann Arbor Ultimate in the fall of 2013. Since then, she has enjoyed the transition from self-proclaimed spirit captain to actual captain (but still spirit-focused!). She started playing club with Rocket Lawnchair in 2017 and was named one of the captains for the 2018 season. When Sara is not playing ultimate she also enjoys petting dogs and eating. She was appointed to the Ann Arbor Ultimate Board of Directors in 2018.
Scott started playing ultimate while enrolled at Grand Valley State University. He was home for the summer and was looking for more ultimate to play and stumbled upon Ann Arbor Ultimate. Since then he has played in almost every league and is always looking for pick-up. After that first summer, he has played club every year and has never been on the same team more than once. He was appointed to the Ann Arbor Ultimate Board of Directors in 2014 and also serves as the fields coordinator.
Jordan has played pick-up and intramurals for long enough to pick up some really bad habits. She is a biochemist by training and currently works in R&D for Swift Biosciences. Jordan is also a captain for Autonomous, a new Ann Arbor/Detroit women's club team. An inaugural season member of Brooklyn Book Club in NYC, which she played for two years, she has experience as a commissioner and board member of Manhattan Ultimate Disc (MUD). She has played league in BADA, MUD, PADA, and Ann Arbor Ultimate. She has captained more league teams than she cares to admit and is currently trying to teach her 2-year-old to throw anything other than a scoober. Coaching the infant starts soon. She was appointed to the Ann Arbor Ultimate Board of Directors in 2017.
One day in middle school, Matt was out at the soccer field with some friends when he had a wild idea: "Let's throw this power bar across the field to each other!" Steven sprinted out for a long pass and Matt let one go that soared through the air over the field and straight into Cory's forehead (not Steven). Although he felt bad for Cory, he also felt the pure joy of throwing and watching a flying spinning object for the first time. A year later he began playing ultimate with the infamous Frisbee Tuesday pickup group in his home town, and the rest is history. Matt is a graduate student at the University of Michigan, has been playing A2U for the past 5 years, and really enjoys having fun. He was appointed to the Ann Arbor Ultimate Board of Directors in 2019.
Jenna started playing pickup when she was about 10 or 11, and got into organized ultimate, including Ann Arbor Ultimate, in 2010. She played for Air Raid through high school, intramural and pick up in college, and returned to Ann Arbor after college to play for A2U again. She has captained numerous leagues and loves the community. She is also a small animal veterinarian and frequently examines her long suffering black lab mix, Sandra, and domestic shorthair cat, Shadow. She was appointed to the Ann Arbor Ultimate Board of Directors in 2019.
Our captains committee is an integral part of the organization as they select captains and provide them support in the form of meetings, trainings, and feedback.
Katie first played ultimate her senior year in high school. All it took was one sample of the sport and she was hooked. She joined the Grand Valley State University club team, eventually becoming Captain and President of the team. After Grand Valley, she joined the Ann Arbor Ultimate, and has been captaining for various teams within the league since 2015, and joined the Captain’s Committee in 2019. She loves teaching ultimate basics to new players, and has always emphasized the importance of enjoying the sport regardless of the score. Outside of ultimate, Katie is a Web Product Manager who loves bringing her dog Sammy to work.
A native of Ann Arbor, Andy fell in love with ultimate during 8th grade gym class. He started playing organized ultimate in Germany in 1988, where he finally learned to throw a forehand. He played the inaugural Ann Arbor Summer League in 1994 before moving away and playing leagues in Colorado and Texas. Returning to Ann Arbor in 2003, Andy has played and captained nearly every season since. He has been part of the Captain's Committee since 2014 and still looks forward to every single game.
Alex spent every Saturday morning the summer before his freshman year of high school playing pickup with the Saline cross country team. He continued every year until he graduated, taking his talents to Washington, DC and Stall 11, American University’s men’s ultimate team. Over those next four years, he also played with ro-sham-bo at the University of Edinburgh and in Ann Arbor Ultimate Summer Leagues before taking five years off. Alex returned to Ann Arbor and to ultimate in 2017 and was invited to join the Captain’s Committee in fall of 2019. When not working on his lefty backhand or scoober, Alex enjoys going to bourbon club, listening to Ben Folds, and playing with his and his partner’s miniature dachshund.
Chris started playing pickup ultimate in 2010. Since 2014, he has played leagues with Capitol Area Disc Association in East Lansing and Ann Arbor Ultimate, where he would later go on to join the Captain’s Committee in 2018. Chris works as a Fire Safety Specialist for a local health system and has had a lifelong ambition to have a son and name him Harry… Harry Wolf. However, those dreams were dashed in 2013 when he married his far too sensible wife, Meredith. When Chris isn’t playing ultimate, you can bet he’s cheering on his Spartans. Feel free to ask him what he thinks of Jim Harbaugh!
Anna first learned about ultimate watching her siblings play in college and being forced to play pickup over Thanksgiving break. She finally played a real game after moving to Ann Arbor in 2016 and joining Fall League. She was hooked! Anna played for Autonomous, SE Michigan's Women's Club Team for its first two seasons and started captaining league teams in 2017. She joined the Captain's Committee in the Spring of 2018. When she's not working on perfecting the deep cut, Anna is a social worker who does public service program development and community integration. She lives on the west side of Ann Arbor with her husband, pitbull, and 6 chickens.
Last Updated: December 3rd, 2019