AGM of Irish American football association
The AGM was held on Sunday the 28th of January at the Louis Fitzgerald Hotel in Dublin. A full report on topics discussed and outcomes of submissions by teams, board members & officials will come in time. A number of new people were elected to the Board of Managment and as a result, there has been a significant change to the makeup of the governance of the organisation.
First, it is important to acknowledge the contributions of those outgoing members and the service provided to the Association this year and in years past. Particularly Cillian Smith, who stepped down as Commissioner of the League, for his long and faithful service in that role. Cillian will continue as an ordinary Board Member. Also, thanks must go to outgoing President Michael Smith, following the expiration of his term.
The new members of the Board are, Liam Ryan, from University of Limerick Vikings, who was elected to a three-year term after topping the poll. Stuart Donaldson of the Cork Admirals, who was also elected to a three-year term. Stevie McCrystal of the Belfast Knights, who was elected to complete the remaining two years of one of the vacated seats and Donncha Ó Conmhuí, of the Dublin Rebels, who was also elected to complete the remaining two years of one of the vacated seats.
Orla McAleese, previously Team Ireland General Manager and of the North Kildare Reapers was elected as President to serve a three-year term, the first female President of IAFA. President McAleese had the following message for the membership.
My plan for the association is very simple and has three key components. The first is communication. It is important that you are being heard. I will answer my phone and my emails. I am eager to hold conversations and I listen to hear, not to merely answer. As President, I can guarantee you that you will be heard and you will be answered. Nobody in this association will be ignored or forgotten about.
The next component is the Board of IAFA. The Board works for you, the membership. We will be accountable to you. We are just the custodians of your association and we will remain so at your discretion. The Board should lead by example and by what the membership wants, not the other way around. As President, I will guarantee that board meetings will be productive, positive and professional. We are all individuals, from varied backgrounds and skillsets, we all have the same priority; football on this Island.
Last but not least, Transparency. Now that I am your President. IAFA will be transparent in its operation. If the board works for you then they are accountable and accountability is reliant on transparency. From our finances to national and international matters, we will be clear in our dealings. The age of secrecy has ended.
I firmly believe that if we work together on these three key components that everything else we work for will come together. It will make a difference to how football is perceived and played on this Island, Everyone involved in this sport, be it coaches, players, admin, officials and board members will get the support they need to help make their club or organisation better. Whether it is education for coaches and players, administrative or fiscal knowledge to run a club. We can go back to grassroots to help our clubs be strong and football will be strong as a result.
We need to remember what this association is based on, football and the love people have of the game.
Thank you for electing me your president and your time in reading this message.
– Orla McAleese,
Irish American Football Assocation.