Some of Victoria’s best coaches, volunteers and umpires will be honoured for their contribution to community football at the 2019 Community Football Awards Night on Friday 18 October.
The 2019 AFL Victoria Community Football Awards is an amalgamation of the traditional Australian Football Coaches Association (AFCA) Awards and NAB AFL Auskick Volunteer Award events.
Of the 17,000 accredited coaches across the state, four finalists have been selected in one of four Coach of the Year award categories – Junior, Youth, Senior and Female.
In addition, the Greg Sidebottom Memorial Umpire Coach of the Year Award will be announced, as well as the School Ambassador of the Year.
NAB AFL Auskick volunteers will be awarded for their efforts this season with the NAB AFL Auskick Volunteer of the Year Award.
The AFL Victoria Community Football Awards will acknowledge the AFL Merit Awards, WorkSafe AFL Victoria Country Volunteer of the Year Award and AFL Victoria State Metro Volunteer of the Year Award.
The Victorian representatives from the National Inclusion Carnival All-Australian team will be recognised, as well as the Victorian All Australians from the Wheelchair Aussie Rules National Championships, and the inaugural captains from the Victorian Blind Football League.
AFL Victoria received many nominations this year and congratulates everyone for their efforts throughout the year.
Below are some of the nominees:
DAVID PARKIN JUNIOR COACH OF THE YEAR
Alan Moulden (Mt Martha JFC)
Alan has been nominated for his outstanding attention to detail in preparation for training and game days. At 70 years of age, Alan dedicates an incredible amount of time developing the 22 players in his team as both footballers and young men, while also continuously developing his knowledge in coaching.
Adam O’Keefe (North Warrnambool Eagle FNC)
Adam’s enthusiasm and encouragement of all his young players on and off the field, along with his willingness to pass on his skills and knowledge has landed him a nomination for this award. Adam goes above and beyond in providing specific feedback for each player highlighting their strengths and areas to improve on.
Craig Nuttal (Prahran)
Craig has developed a deep understanding of coaching junior football and the sequential development of football skills for each age group. Craig makes efforts to know and connect with each player individually, while also building a relationship with parents. Taking time out of his week, Craig prepares a weekly match report to highlight the team’s strengths while also highlighting areas for improvement.
Derek Waters (Caulfield Bears JFC)
Derek has provided a fun and progressive environment for his team. He understands the game, the learning needs and challenges whilst catering for abilities of all players. Derek’s open and regular communication is appreciated by so many at the club.
STAN ALVES YOUTH COACH OF THE YEAR
Matt Dowling (Geelong Amateur FNC)
Matt’s impressive coaching education has given him a huge amount of knowledge in the field. Matt’s dedication to the club is shown by his communication with all players, parents, coaches and umpires. Matt ensures a fun training environment while also teaching players about simple, new and effective tactics that they can utilise on game day.
Bernie Porter (Kokoda JFC)
Bernie has had a great year of coaching, with his team demonstrating a vast improvement since 2018. From not winning a game in 2018, his side went on to play in the grand final this year. Bernie’s passion and coaching style has imparted great knowledge and confidence in the team.
Daniel Raudino (Keilor Park FC)
Daniel’s efforts have been categorised in three areas. First, Daniel never forgets that it is all about the kids. Second, Daniel makes an incredible error in inspiring parents to get involved and third, football is first for Keilor Park. Daniel has also worked very hard to build the bridge to hopefully have two clubs (Airport West and Keilor Park) working closely together to move forward.
Sam Stevens (South Warrnambool FNC)
Sam has been around the SWFC for over 20 years in several roles ranging from Auskick Coordinator to coach. Sam’s natural rapport with young footballers and the ability to teach the skills of football whilst creating a fun and inclusive environment has been second to none.
PETA SEARLE FEMALE COACH OF THE YEAR
Sophia Ikosidekas (Beverley Hills JFC)
Sophia has been nominated for her calm and caring nature for all the players in her group, developing her groups playing knowledge and providing clear instructions or feedback to improve players at all levels. Sophia engages not only her players, but also parents and volunteers to ensure everyone is working towards a common goal.
Christina Polatajko (VU Western Spurs)
Christina has been nominated for being extremely motivated and innovative. With a P.E teaching background, Christina provides knowledge in an easy to understand way. She has strong investment at all levels and has also developed and grown senior program over multiple years.
Jessie Mount (East Brighton JFC)
Jessie has had a magnificent year receiving several nominations for different awards which all revealed a common theme. Jessie’s time and detail that she puts to her match reviews and individual player feedback has been positively recognised. She is a great role model for the club and playing group who always tries to bring the best out of each of the players.
Hanna Sparks (Glenroy JFC)
Hannah has been nominated for her ability to connect with her playing group, effortlessly inspiring and empowering her players to achieve their full potential. She achieves this by tailoring her communication to the team/person and to suit the situation at hand while also providing constant review analysis and identification of areas for improvement.
GERARD FITZGERALD SENIOR COACH OF THE YEAR
Leon Davis (Heathmere FNC)
As former player, Leon knows the importance of good coaching. Leon is thoroughly organised and always prepared as a teacher and mentor. He is continually positive, enthusiastic and encouraging, especially to the younger players. Leon has been an outstanding role-model to payers in the broader community.
Leigh Hutchinson (Sebastopol FNC)
Leigh has developed Sebastopol’s young existing list of homegrown talent. Leigh has been nominated for his efforts in helping oversee developments in the junior program, assisting on Junior/Senior nights throughout the year, as well as building great relationships with the head coach of the netball driving Sebastopol’s ‘one club feel’.
John Delahunty (Minyip/Murtoa FNC)
John has an unblemished record in Coaching. Currently a Senior Coach, John has been nominated for his calm and measured approach to teaching and developing players at all levels. He also provides his Assistant Coaches with opportunities to gain valuable knowledge to increase their passion for coaching and creating a coaching pathway.
Shane Morwood (Dingley FNC)
Shane has made a positive change on and off the field at the club in the nine years he has coached there. A leader in the mental health space, Shane has devoted his time to introduce a wellness program to interact with the junior club. Shane also takes time out of his day to provide support and lend a shoulder to players about any life issues they are facing.