LINDA Shaw says she feels privileged to be part of the Portarlington Demons Football Netball Club’s 145-year history after becoming its first female president.
Following Andrew Aquilina stepping down as president, a decision was made under Rule 66 of the Club’s constitution to appoint Ms Shaw to the casual vacancy of president of PDFNC.
Ms Shaw said it was an exciting time for women in sport and she thought it was fantastic to see more and more women engaging in what had long been deemed a maledominated domain.
“I grew up with strong female role models who taught me valuable work and life lessons, none more important than that of never limiting your passions or opportunities based on your gender,” she said.
“I have received overwhelming support from the members, committee, coaching staff and the playing group as well as AFL Barwon and the other league presidents.
“I look forward to working with the rest of the Portarlington team for the 2019 season.”
Ms Shaw has been on the PDFNC committee for the past four years as the marketing and sponsorship director, and has had a number of years of experience in private enterprise and corporate marketing.
Mr Aquilina will still maintain an active role within the committee, working closely with Ms Shaw and the committee in implementing the new change management and procedures the club has been working on for 18 months.
In early 2018, the club applied for funding to explore a multi-million dollar sporting development in conjunction with several other local sporting fraternities for Portarlington.
Through many hours of dedication a small team of volunteers were rewarded with the promise of an initial State Government grant of $50,000 to complete a master plan.
Confidences were further boosted by visits from both political parties who had shown a genuine desire to improve community facilities for Portarlington.
Labot candidate for Corangamite Libby Coker pledged $455,000 towards stage one of the development last week.
One of the key people who have been instrumental in this process is Mr Aquilina. Given the importance of such a redevelopment and the impact it would have not only to the football and netball club but on the local community, Mr Aquilina has decided to fully commit and focus his energies into securing funding for the four stages of the development.