I know you are in a whirlwind time right now and I really appreciate the initial steps you have taken to fix something that we both love and live.
When the initial news of Greg's email and tweet came out, I didn't jump on board the disaffiliation train right away. I wanted to speak to some people and get a few different perspectives before I made my decision. After hearing what they had to say and hearing the deafening silence from HQ, my mind was made up.
We were no longer going to be a CrossFit Affiliate. It broke my heart. I discovered CrossFit in 2010 in the Cayman Islands. I was an out of shape, sort of former athlete that found something that made me want to get up at 6am to sweat and work and bond. I shared my love with some of my best friends in Canada and they fell in love too. They started an affiliate out of their garage in 2012 and in 2013 we moved it to Windsor Ontario Canada to become a real brick and mortar CrossFit box, CrossFit All Levels. We started with 1600 sq/ft and slowly grew into about 4000. Then in 2018 we moved to a new 7100 sq/ft facility and we rebranded. We had found our home and our members were ecstatic. My kids (4 and 5) had grown up in a CrossFit gym. Several of our members met and got married because of CrossFit. CrossFit has been a big part of my identity for 7 plus years. Having to distance myself from that was an immense and very hard decision, but one I didn't regret. I wanted to be a part of positive change in my gym, my city, my country and my community and I didn't feel CrossFit was aligning with my values and my way forward.
We changed our name to All Level Performance and Health and took the initial steps to no longer being an affiliate. I was interviewed by local TV and radio about my decision and I explained myself as best I could, but stated that the door was still open as I believe in the power of change. I believe in growth. I believe in second chances. I've had plenty of second chances and without them I wouldn't be where I am today and for that I'm thankful. So when the email came back from Affiliate Support that they would close my account immediately, I asked them to hold off. I wanted to see what would happen next. Everything happened so quickly, I thought it was time for a quick break. When the news came that you would be purchasing CrossFit, I thought it was a really great start. Your passion, your track record and your dedication to CrossFit seem to make you the perfect steward to shepherd CrossFit in a new and exciting direction. But I want to wait. To see what comes next. Do we get a board of directors? Do we get top down initiatives to make inclusion and diversity a priority? Do we get structure and programs to make these initiatives a reality at the affiliate level? Do we make communication a priority, especially in times of crisis. Side note, I've never received so many emails from CrossFit as I have in the last two weeks.
So in short I'm hopeful. I'm cautiously optimistic. I'm apprehensive. I want to be able to say proudly that I'm a CrossFitter. I hope you can make this happen. I really do.
If there is anything I can do to help, I'd love to be a part of positive change.
Thanks and good luck.
Thanks so much for the note, John!
I completely understand where you're coming from. I faced many of the same challenges as an affiliate owner in the past 18 months. It's been a whirlwind, and I have seen firsthand the areas of opportunity (sometimes painfully).
I am going to fight tirelessly to regain the community's trust. I hope to show you through our actions that it's worth sticking around as a CrossFit affiliate. The amount of feedback that we have received this week has been incredible. I can't wait to dig in after the transition.
Feel free to reach out to me anytime. We are here for you.
-------------- Eric Roza