Professional sportsman, author, entrepreneur
and humanitarian, Mike Ditchfield, completed a
recreational studies course at our Ilkley campus in
Mike’s remarkable career has been an
incredible journey - that began with one.
On a 6 week vacation to the United States, he got off the plane with his luggage when it refuelled in Boston and never looked back! He was rapidly talent spotted and became a football coach and then joined the Denver Broncos as a place kicker. At the time he commented, “It has been a fairy tale story for me. I have come through all the wrong channels for football, but it all comes down to who can kick in a game – who, under pressure, can put the ball through those two sticks.”
Mike went on to become Head Soccer Coach at Penn State University, a sports motivational speaker and wrote Coaching Soccer the Progressive Way with Walter Bahr.
Blessed with talent and business acumen, Mike has used his considerable skills to help a number of humanitarian causes. He donates a percentage of the profits from his restaurant to the Sixteenth of May Foundation, a charity he co-founded. As President and CEO he works tirelessly to transform lives.
“My time in Yorkshire was a watering shed that gave me much in the way of confidence and vision to tackle life in America. After publishing a best selling book on soccer and spending time working with the less fortunate in Ethiopia, Rwanda and now Darfur, I have a restaurant in Denver Colorado called Jing. I still travel to the Sudan where I am building villages for the returning refugees from the grasp of genocide. My Foundation continues to support those who cannot support themselves....yet.”
Photograph supplied by Mike Ditchfield