For the past two weeks, Bay Area Derby has been reeling from a serious tragedy in our league that has left us completely heartbroken. Amanda Pomba, a beloved leader and league mate, took her own life. We have been slow with this news in order to give ourselves and her family privacy and space to grieve and to figure out our next steps for moving forward. Through this extremely difficult time, we are wholeheartedly grateful for your patience and understanding. We appreciate all of our friends, families, volunteers, sponsors, fans, and the many members of the global roller derby community who have reached out to offer support.
Additionally, BAD would like to acknowledge some of the negative posts and stories which have come out in the past few days. We fully respect everyone’s rights to share their experiences and feelings, but we feel it is also important to understand that the events of the past few months leading up to Pomba’s death were complex and lengthy. Amanda Pomba was not a victim of ruinous bullying from BAD. Out of respect for Pomba, her family and the other parties involved, these details will remain private. We request that anyone speculating on these matters pause and consider the consequences of inaccurate public assumptions.
Bay Area Derby does not condone bullying in any form. It is with sincere humility we recognize that in years past, our organization did not work as hard as we should have to create a positive culture for our members and our derby colleagues. In light of this realization, the last few seasons have been spent examining our shortcomings and working to create a better culture—one that our members deserve and can be proud of.
As we regroup after this tragedy, our efforts—now more than ever—will be dedicated to creating the most supportive and welcoming league we possibly can. We appreciate all constructive feedback and will do our utmost to give our skaters, officials, volunteers and fans the best experience we can collectively provide.
With derby love,
Bay Area Derby