Eagle Alumni Spotlight: Meet Daniela Mogro

When and where did you play rugby?

I started my rugby career in college at Arizona State University. I've always been a huge fan of playing and watching sports and I was a multi-sport athlete (soccer, basketball, track, etc.) I was burnt out from running, stumbled upon rugby and I thought, oh yeah, this is like soccer and football which I love. Well I was in for a bit of a surprise, but I was hooked right from the start! Big thanks to my coaches and teammates for making it amazing from the start! Another hook for me was I loved that there was the opportunity for me to learn a new sport in which I could travel and represent my university, but that there were still opportunities for me grow and play at a high level after I graduated. I always dreamed of representing my country so it was a no brainer that it became such a huge part of my life.

When did you play as an Eagle?

My first international tournament as an Eagle was in 2001/2002 in New Zealand! Adventure from the start as we got detained by the police at the airport because a teammates forgot she had an orange in her bag! I've had the honor to get to play in so many amazing places with so many amazing people around the globe in Hong Kong, Canada, Barbados, US, Dubai. It spanned until about 2008/2009.

What is your favorite rugby memory?

Ok there is no way to pick one. There are so many amazing moments and memories for me thanks to rugby; The people, the teammates, the friendships, the traveling, the singing (B A N A N A S!,) the dancing, the laughing, the jokes, the dares, the bus/van/car rides, the ice baths, the weigh-ins, the training, the fitness testing, the scrimmages, the fire ants, and then there's the tournaments and the games. Moments like being under the lights of a packed stadium running onto the field in the final, the sound of boos from crowd for being the U.S. team. Then the electricity of cheers and running around the stadium giving high fives to the international crowd for pulling out the win!

What are you doing now?

After a 15 year stint out east in New York City, I'm back close to family out west in Arizona. I'm still in the same line of work -- a Sr. Director of Marketing in the technology and digital application space. I miss New York City and the east, but it wasn't too hard to trade in my snow boots and shovel for flip flops and a pool. Plus I'm excited to help with Rugby in Arizona!

What do you believe is the most important factor in growing the game in the United States?

I think it's such an exciting time and there is so much opportunity! I believe it starts both from the top down and from the grass root efforts up. I also think it's challenging to talk about "growing" the game without the clarity of what we are defining as "growing," and without knowing what the goals and game plan at play are currently. I think one of the most important things is to take a step back and establish what the "goals" are and prioritize them. There should be buy-in and clarity within the organization, and then there should be an outreach to the major regions and territories leads to share, educate and explain how we are going to monitor and measure our performance to our goals. I probably should cut myself off here because there is no chance there is enough paper for me.