Women of AFL – Vanessa Creeley

Vanessa Creeley
Secretary for Sarina Demons Junior AFL Club, Executive Member on AFL Mackay Junior Executive.

What does your role involve?
Secretary role – Organising meetings, running of game day including the paperwork, keeping members up to date with information, creating documents i.e. flyers, spreadsheets for contacts and rosters, organising members for our weekly raffles. Executive role – Organising the Junior League Presentation Night, organising the Final Series paperwork for all clubs.

How long have you been involved in AFL?
3 years, I became Secretary of the Sarina Tigers JAFC in 2010 (now Sarina Demons JAFL Club), I also joined the AFL Mackay Junior Executive in 2010.        

How did you first become involved in AFL?  
I was trying to find a club for my children to play in and our President was in the process of starting a club in Sarina so I put my hand up for Secretary. I met the President of the Junior League through our Clubs interest in becoming an incorporated Club and he asked me to join the Executive.

What is the greatest challenge you have faced in your role?
Becoming an independent Incorporated Club as when we first started our Club in 2010 we were affiliated to another Club, which members were hesitant about the change, but I am thankful they saw the possibilities I was informing them of if we become our own incorporated club.

What has been your greatest achievement/s?
Helping our Club get an AFL field approved for development in the local sporting complex in Sarina which is to be completed within the next 4-7 years.

What has been the most rewarding thing about working in football?
Seeing our great sport develop further in Qld and meeting new people.

Do you think being a woman helps you to bring a different perspective to your role?
Definitely, we just think different.

What do you find most rewarding about your role in football?
Witnessing kids getting out on the field for the first time and loving AFL.

What do hope to achieve in football?
To see Sarina Demons field built in Sarina and to help make AFL the most played sport in the Mackay region.

Who inspires you and why?
Josie Rogers – Matriarch of Mackay AFL – Josie is a gorgeous soul who has tirelessly dedicated over 30 years to AFL in the Mackay region, she knows everything there is to know about anything regarding footy. Josie is one of the kindest people I have met since getting involved in AFL she helped me immensely when I took over from her as Secretary for the Mackay Junior League in 2011. I can only hope to be as dedicated and knowledgeable as Josie one day.

What advice would you give to other women hoping to work (or working) in AFL?
Don’t be afraid to get involved in a predominantly male sport, the rewards are worth the effort and enjoy every minute!

Why do you think it is important to have women in football?
As majority of women are the ones that take their kids to sports it is necessary to have their opinion and aspect on the sport. I also think having both men and women involved creates a better demographic for the sport.

What do you see in the future for women in football?
Great things, I see more and more women being recognised for their tireless work and contribution to AFL. I also see a Premiership Women’s Competition coming to fruition and for this I am very excited as I have just started playing Women’s AFL in Mackay.

What is the most important attribute in a leader?
Integrity and being approachable.

Is there anything else you would like to add?
I love being involved in AFL it has changed my life! My life has now taken a different path to what it was and for this I am very grateful.

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