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Todd Anderson appointed NYSAC director of MMA

Referee Todd Anderson, left, raises the hand of

Referee Todd Anderson, left, raises the hand of John Makdessi after his win over Renee Forte at UFC 165 in Toronto on Sept. 21, 2013.  Credit: AP/Chris Young

Todd Anderson has been appointed director of mixed martial arts for the New York State Athletic Commission, filling a position that has been open for several months after Ed Kunkle resigned.

Anderson has worked as a referee and judge and has experience regulating the sport at both the professional and amateur level.

"I would like to thank NYSAC Executive Director Kim Sumbler for her trust and confidence in my overall knowledge, skills, and abilities as they relate to the position of Director of New York Athletic Commission’s Mixed Martial Arts," Anderson said in a news release provided to Newsday. "I look forward to working with all the members of NYSAC with the continued pursuit of advancing the sport of MMA in New York to the highest levels of the industry."

As MMA director, Anderson will oversee professional MMA events in New York, and Sumbler told Newsday last November that the position likely would also oversee the state's third-party sanctioning and licensing programs which cover amateur events in New York.

UFC fans may remember Anderson best as the referee in the main event at UFC 208 in Brooklyn between Germaine de Randamie and Holly Holm. In that fight, de Randamie twice struck Holm after the bell sounded to end a round, but she did not receive a point deduction. But that fight represents 0.67% of his refereeing experience. According to Sherdog's referee database, Anderson has been the third person in the cage for 149 fights, including other title fights in the UFC, Bellator and PFL.

Anderson, 54, has worked as a referee at other UFC events in New York and elsewhere as well as Bellator events, most recently working the Sergio Pettis-Kyoji Horiguchi title fight at Bellator 272 in December. He also refereed a title fight between Valentina Shevchenko and Joanna Jedrzejczyk at UFC 231 in 2018.

A black belt in Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu, Anderson helped implement MMA regulations for Ontario, a Canadian province, and worked with the province's commission to perform skills assessment testing on new combat sport athletes, according to NYSAC's release.

"With vast experience in combat sports, Mr. Anderson will be an asset to the New York State Athletic Commission," Executive Director Kim Sumbler said in a statement. "The Commission and the athletes competing in New York will benefit from Mr. Anderson’s expertise and extraordinary leadership in regulating amateur and professional Mixed Martial Arts and by his robust knowledge of combat sports in general. We are pleased to welcome him to the Athletic Commission team."

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