Helena Youth Soccer Association

Board of Directors

The HYSA Board of Directors meets on the third Monday evening of every month, at 5:30 pm at the Comfort Suites Washington Avenue, north of the Siebel Soccer Complex.

Board Members
Sean Lawlor - President
Sean's interest in soccer began in college when he played club soccer while at Dartmouth to supplement training for track and field and cross-country running. He began his association with HYSA when his oldest daughter, Aine, started in the Recreational League program. He quickly transitioned into coaching her team and continued coaching as Gracie and Tess were added to the Lawlor clan. After several years coaching, Sean joined the board. He has been on the board since 2010 and is currently serving as President.
Frank Cornwell - Vice President

Frank Cornwell has lived in Montana his entire life and has grown to love the greater area of Helena since he moved here in 2009. He developed a love for the game of soccer during the first time he saw his daughters, Taylor and Ashlynn, start playing for HYSA.

Ever since their first games, he’s been coaching having earned his E License and then joining the HYSA Board of Directors in 2013. He has coached 6 years of recreational league soccer and had 3 straight seasons were his teams did not lose a game. He is also proud that most of the players he has coached with the recreational program have moved on to play competitively in the Arsenal program. Along with his involvement with the recreational program, Frank continues to be actively involved in coaching after having completed 5 years of coaching Arsenal Academy and Arsenal competitive soccer.

Wayne Gardella - Treasurer
Entering his fourth season as an assistant coach for the Carroll Collefe Saints, Wayne Gardella grew up in Central America where he participated in youth soccer leagues from an early age.  While in Honduras he played in the Club Deportivo Motagua youth academy system.  When Wayne returned to the USA and played varsity soccer for McLean High School, Virginia.  He also played club soccer for McLean Youth Soccer. As an adult, Wayne coached nationally ranked youth travel soccer teams for Team America Soccer Club in Annandale, VA. He also coached numerous futsal and indoor youth teams, successfully competing in many regional and national tournaments. 


Scott Lockwood  - Immediate Past President

Scott Lockwood started his interest in soccer when participating on the Helena High ski team. The coach was looking for a fun activity that involved lots of running to get the team into shape during preseason so he had them play soccer. Nobody knew the rules except for a French foreign exchange student who knew the game but not how to coach, especially in English. Scott went on to play intramural soccer in college and occasional adult soccer in Helena. Coaching for HYSA began when he coached his son Sean on the U-14 boys Arsenal team (along with the legendary John Hollow) in 1985. Since then he has coached Arsenal teams at every age group and gender. He started coaching girls in 1993 and met his wife Dawn while coaching her daughter Kim Leighton. His teams have won numerous State Championships and competed at the Far West Regional Tournament as well as the USA Cup. He has a National “D” coaching license and continues to assist HYSA teams. He also assisted with the Helena High School girls soccer program for a number of years.

Recognizing a need for girls to develop their soccer skills in an all-girls environment, 1990’s he approached the HYSA with an idea for an All Girls League. He and Dave Michels set up a registration table in the Capital Hill Mall and the first season about 45 grade school age girls played the first recreational soccer sponsored by HYSA. The turnout doubled every season for many years and became a vibrant force in the emerging dominance of Helena girls soccer throughout Montana. This program eventually evolved into our recreational soccer program available for boys and girls.

Scott has been on the HYSA board of directors nearly every year since the beginning and is currently the President of HYSA. He was the MYSA state player registrar and has been recognized as coach of the year by HYSA and the Montana Youth Soccer Association. He was the State Referee Administrator for Montana for more than 25 years and continues to train more than 100 referees every year. He has been the Soccer rules interpreter for the Montana High School Association for more than 20 years and has sat on the National Federation of High Schools Soccer Rules committee for 3 years.


Cindy is a fourth generation Montanan whose only early exposure to soccer was when she played crab soccer in her high school P.E. class. She married a die-hard soccer fan in 1990 and soon caught soccer fever. Her daughter played five years in HYSA’s recreational soccer program, spent four seasons in HYSA’s Academy soccer program, and has been playing Arsenal since Spring 2013.  Cindy has served as an Arsenal team manager since 2013.
Cindy is currently senior counsel with Doney Crowley PC.  Prior to that, she was the Chief Remediation Counsel for the Montana Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ) and served as the State’s senior superfund attorney for over 20 years. Before working for DEQ, Cindy was in private practice in Missoula with the law firm Datsopoulos, MacDonald and Lind, P.C., and also clerked at the Montana Supreme Court.
Besides serving as the Secretary on the HYSA Board, Cindy coordinates the Westside Womens’ Soccer Club, which is the booster group for the Capital High School girls’ soccer team.  She is also the Capital High School parent representative to the Helena School District’s Parent Advisory Council, and is the parent representative on the Helena School District’s Materials Review Standing Committee. She previously served on the Board of Directors for the Helena Youth Choir, as the Secretary of the Board of Trustees for the Shodair Children's Hospital, on the Montana Children's Home and Hospital Foundation Board of Trustees, and as Chair of the Phoenix Fund for Animals for 11 years.
In her spare time, Cindy’s greatest joy is spending time with her family and together they enjoy traveling, reading, cooking, hiking, theatre, and lake life.

Mark Etchart


Mike has been involved in youth soccer since 1995 when he coached his oldest son Chris in Kennewick Washington.  Since then he has coached both girls and boys teams up to the U-14 level in Washington and Montana.  He holds E Level Coaching Certification.  Mike also played high school soccer well before soccer was a popular youth sport.  While living in Germany with the US Military he played on the local club soccer team.  He currently has two children involved in the program both playing at the Arsenal level and his niece is currently involved in the recreational program.  Mike is an active referee and each weekend you can find him refereeing multiple youth games.  Mike works locally for an environmental remediation firm located in St Paul MN.  

Shawn has been in the insurance industry since 2007, coming into the business from a successful career coaching and working with the highest level of collegiate and professional athletes. Coming back to Montana in 2007 thru 2012 Shawn was a commercial producer in Helena, Mt. for Western States Insurance. In 2012 he was elevated to Branch Manager. However, later in 2012 he jumped at the opportunity to join the Leavitt Group as a owner instead of taking a ownership position with the newly formed PayneWest. The Leavitt Group is nationally an industry leader, and expanding rapidly it’s footprint into Montana. His role with Leavitt Great West includes not only building a culture and creating a new team in Montana for the Leavitt Group, but to provide cutting edge solutions that were previously unavailable to Montana businesses on the ground.
Shawn’s maintains a high level of professional involvement and carries that high involvement over to his family. He and his wife Ami have 4 children, ranging from high school to twins in grade school, where they are both very active with their activities.


Damon grew up playing soccer in Helena and at Capital High School in the mid 1990’s.  He continued playing soccer recreationally while attending the University of Montana and earning a B.A. in Archaeology and an M.A. in Forensic Anthropology.  He has been coaching his daughter and son in the HYSA recreational program since they were in Kindergarten and enjoys teaching them, and their friends about the game of soccer.  Damon is the Cultural Records Manager at the Montana Historical Society’s State Historic Preservation Office.
  • Grew up playing soccer in Helena, with the YMCA program and during the very early years of HYSA -- attended Capital High School in the dark ages before soccer was a sanctioned high school sport
  • Played collegiate soccer for four years at Willamette University in Salem Oregon, graduated in Chemistry
  • Graduate school at University of Wisconsin in Madison, M.S. in Water Chemistry
  • Coach/assistant coach for HYSA Arsenal teams beginning in 2008, assistant coaching U-16 Boys this year
  • Married with two kids - wife Shannon, son Eli (15), daughter Brynn (14), both HYSA players
  • Employed at Hydrometrics (consulting environmental scientists/engineers) for 19 years, currently sciences group manager in the Helena office
  • Other interests -- my second career as a musician, playing classical and jazz piano around town as much as possible, a couple solo gigs with the Helena Symphony, accompanist for the Helena Chamber Singers, church musician at First Lutheran and occasionally other houses of worship -- flyfishing and wilderness hiking/backpacking
  • FUN SOCCER FACT - my college roommate at Willamette played high school soccer with former U.S. National Team goalkeeper Kasey Keller.

Meeting Minutes

Questions about the HYSA Board's Meeting Minutes can be sent via our general email address to the attention of our Board President.

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