WAAFL elects new boss

Cockburn Gazette - - OPINION -

THE WA Am­a­teur Foot­ball League (WAAFL) has a new pres­i­dent for the first time in two decades af­ter Sam Birm­ing­ham un­seated John Davies at last week’s an­nual gen­eral meet­ing.

Clubs ral­lied around Mr Birm­ing­ham’s prom­ise of trans­parency, com­mu­ni­ca­tion and col­lab­o­ra­tion, as well as a com­mit­ment to im­prove the in­tegrity of the com­pe­ti­tion.

For­merly pres­i­dent of the West Coast Am­a­teur Foot­ball Club, Mr Birm­ing­ham will step down from that role to fo­cus on his new po­si­tion.

“The WAAFL is a strong com­pe­ti­tion with a ter­rific fi­nan­cial base and it con­tin­ues to grow each year,” he said.

“I’m ex­cited about de­vel­op­ing a vi­sion for the fu­ture. Trans­parency helps all club pres­i­dents un­der­stand the op­por­tu­ni­ties and chal­lenges ahead and will hope­fully lead to in­creased com­mu­ni­ca­tion and col­lab­o­ra­tion be­tween clubs.”

Stamp­ing out all player pay­ments and harsher penal­ties for poor on-field be­hav­iour re­main a pri­or­ity but Mr Birm­ing­ham said he would seek to high­light the pos­i­tive achieve­ments of the clubs.

“I hear so many good sto­ries about what is go­ing on at in­di­vid­ual clubs, whether it’s turn­ing the cul­ture around or in­vest­ments in com­mu­nity in­fra­struc­ture or im­prov­ing club in­tegrity, and I don’t think those are em­pha­sised enough,” he said.

In the short term, Mr Birm­ing­ham said he would busy him­self with grasp­ing the fi­nan­cial im­pact of the new Perth Sta­dium deal.

“Ob­vi­ously the new sta­dium will af­fect the fund­ing of the WA Foot­ball Com­mis­sion and there­fore am­a­teurs too and so it is go­ing to be re­ally im­por­tant to put to­gether a fi­nan­cial plan for the next three to five years,” he said.

He also praised the out­go­ing pres­i­dent.

“John Davies’ con­tri­bu­tion to the Colts com­pe­ti­tion has been se­cond to none,” he said.

Mr Davies said he wished Mr Birm­ing­ham all the best.

Pic­ture: Matt Jelonek d433259

New pres­i­dent Sam Birm­ing­ham, vice-pres­i­dent Scott Gar­vey and Cameron McKay.

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