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Interview with CIFSS: Answering Fan Questions During Playoffs

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GoFan had a chance to catch up with Mitch Carty this month on customer service for schools and associations during the playoffs. Carty serves as the Chief Financial Officer at the CIF Southern Section (CIFSS), the largest association under the umbrella of the California Interscholastic Federation. The CIFSS governs more than 560 schools and is the fourth-largest high school governing body in the US, behind Texas, Florida, and Ohio.

CIFSS membership has a unique perspective, as it serves schools that make up all ranges of demographics. The CIFSS has extensive experience hosting urban audiences like Orange County with 3+ million people, to rural audiences like Mono County with 14 thousand people.

Watch our full interview with Carty to learn more about providing exceptional customer service during the postseason. 


Before COVID-19, the CIF Southern Section offered both paper and digital tickets. Paper was taken away as an option during the pandemic, ultimately because of state guidelines around person-to-person interactions. In addition, host schools were expected to verify that only family members of participating athletes would purchase tickets and attend events. During that time, digital became the simplest and most realistic method to manage event sales and entry. 

When asked about the previous process with paper tickets, Carty said:

“They would come to our office [...] to pick up tickets, which really made it inconvenient for athletic directors. The athletic directors were having to leave their schools, drive to the regional office, go back to their schools, then pass off the tickets to their business and activities office to put the tickets up for sale.” 

As you can imagine, this was a nightmare for anybody with experience navigating traffic in Los Angeles on a Friday night.

Next Steps

To learn more about providing exceptional customer service during the postseason, check out our guide on How Schools Can Handle Fan Questions During Playoffs.

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