I am Juan Raymond, head coach at Cosmo Stars Soccer Club. My passion for soccer started when I was just a kid. I was born and raised in Colombia where soccer (aka futbol or football) is highly competitive. It is played everywhere, even in the smallest and narrowest streets, and by pretty much everyone. During my childhood, adolescence, and early part of adulthood, I played for my school, as well as for professional and amateur clubs such as Millonarios, America Los Biablos Rojos de Bogota, and Club Los Buhos. I was also convoked to join the youth divisions of the Colombian National soccer team under direction of Finot Castano. I had received a wide variety of awards, including gold ball trophy for best soccer player of the year for two consecutive years in my city, and top tricker of several tournaments at high school, recreational and competitive levels in both Colombia and United States. The most memorable ceremony was when my team and opponent team formed a line in midfield and were clapping as I was leaving to be substituted. The organizer was waiting with the trophy for best player of the year outside of the midfield line. I also received and presented the championship trophy of the Coca-Cola High School Tournament nationwide during a ceremony in my high school. I say that passion and putting the best effort and heart are always the path to success in anything you do; whether it is soccer, any other sport, or even in your professional career.
My name is Kamilla Raymond. I am the executive director and club manager. Even though my education and professional experience is in World Economy as well as Marketing and Advertising, I also share the passion for Sports and understand the benefits of it. During my adolescence, I played volleyball for my high school and my city’s team in Kazakhstan. I strongly believe that sports improve physical activity and health, promote social connections, improve academic performance, and teach important life skills. Overall, exercise improves mental health as exercise reduces the levels of cortisol (hormone associated with stress), as well as releases endorphins and increases serotonin that play an important role in feeling good and in the mood. Playing a sport and contributing to a team create a sense of accomplishment, which improves self-esteem and confidence. I am a big advocate of the benefits of sports in children and adults.