Our story

RefMasters is the brainchild of two NBA referees asking a simple yet powerful question:

If athletes can leverage the latest technology to elevate their skill level, why can’t sports officials?

As pros traveling the country they saw the issues first hand: Young referees unsure of where or how to grow. Coaches and athletes with basic gaps in rules knowledge. Fans with misconceptions about what referees and umpires actually do.

Unsatisfied with the state of things, they sought to build the premier place for referees, coaches, athletes and fans to elevate the game: An educational curriculum that combines virtual and augmented reality with the most respected experts in the world. A social platform to grow and nurture relationships. A marketplace to match each game with the perfect referee.

All this for a better world of sport, where each playing field and court has a high-quality, and happy official. But also for a better world, where people see referees and umpires as humans.

It’s an audacious goal, but we’re relying on a world-class team and unflinching principles to realize our vision. 

RefMasters app

Meet the founders

Sony Tiwari CEO at RefMasters

Sony Tiwari


12+ years in education
Led talent at VC and PE-back orgs
Studied at NYU and Columbia
James Williams Co-Founder at RefMasters

James Williams

Head of Partner Development

13th season as an NBA official
NBA Playoffs, Finals, and All-Star Games
Featured in Forbes and the New York Post
Kane Fitzgerald Co-Founder at RefMasters

Kane Fitzgerald

Head of Referee Education

13 Seasons as an NBA Official
NBA Playoffs, Finals and All-Star Games
Current NBA VP of Referee Operations
Jason Stewart Head of Product Design at RefMasters

Jason Stewart

Head of Product and Design

12+ years in product design
Led Allspark Interactive and PreeMe+You
Venture catalyst for emerging startups

Shawn Price

Executive Vice President

20+ years establishing and leading orgs with an emphasis on finance, sales and marketing

The RefMasters Principles

They guide our curriculum and our culture.

Coverage is a team concept

Anything worth accomplishing is impossible to do alone.
Perfect your role

Quiet confidence

Be someone others can lead and want to follow.
Be human

Eyes on the play

Ignore distractions and anything unrelated to your mission.
Stay focused.

Ignore the crowd

Don’t let the noise affect your ability to hear yourself.
Do you

Call with conviction

Rely on your preparation to communicate clearly and honestly.
Speak the truth.

Guard the game

You are responsible for the integrity of the process and safety of others.
Take ownership.

Right place, right time

Much of success comes down to nailing your positioning.
Be mobile.

It’s not about you

Try to laugh a little, and stay humble a lot.
Maintain perspective.