AFL Asia are delighted to announce that Paul Halliday, Rob Spurr and Rod White have been elected to the AFL Asia Advisory Board (AAAB). The new appointments are the result of a month-long process whereby AFL Asia accepted nominations from across the globe. AFL Asia is excited to work with the three successful candidates and believe that we have the future of AFL Asia in very capable and passionate hands.

Paul Halliday is one of the founding members of the Jakarta Bintangs, who has been a long-term committee member, is a former President of the Club and is currently serving as the Chairman of AFL Indonesia. Paul is an experienced campaigner and ambassador for local development, having played a major role in setting up AFL Indonesia as an entity, which is the overarching body that oversees local development initiatives and employs local players, coupled with the assistance of the Australian Volunteer Program. Paul has long been regarded as the backbone of football within Indonesia and has been the vital cog in seeing the Indonesian Garuda’s participate at the AFL International Cup in 2014 and 2017. Paul’s successful business enterprise and his deep and thorough understanding of governance practices, administration, local development strategies and the vision that AFL Asia needs to undertake will be critically important moving forward. 

Rob Spurr has a long-standing association with international Australian football having served as the Vice-President and Captain of the Jakarta Bintangs, which included leading the Bintangs to Asian Champs glory in their successful campaign back in 2002. Rob has also been a football pioneer in South America, where he developed the code within the region and was the founding member and President of the Santiago Saints in Chile for three years. Professionally, Rob works as a CFO with deep commercial experience with international companies across Australia, SEA, China and South America and with that will hopefully be able to assist with the AAAB’s sponsorship and commercial portfolio. Rob’s passion for sustainable regional development of the men’s and women’s game, ability to be able to provide strong governance and strategic planning, work with stakeholders including clubs, sponsors, and government, and his access to local and regional industry contacts will be highly beneficial to the AAAB and the region. 

 

 

Rod White is the current coach of the Vietnam Swans and has served on their committee for several years. Rod has been a very successful coach in his own right with the Vietnam Swans, having taken out the past three AFL Asia Indochina Cups and having guided the Swannies to their maiden Division 2 Asian Champs triumph in the last edition of our showcase event in 2019. Rod’s background in the business and commercial sector will be the cornerstone of what he can offer the AAAB as it looks to ramp up its sponsorship and commercial portfolio post-COVID19, which in turn will create a more sustainable business model.  Rod is a very astute operator, who has an outstanding understanding of the region’s current state of play and, more importantly, the strategies and foundations that the AAAB need to implement. Rod’s leadership skills, excellent interpersonal communication skills and business and commercial expertise will provide the AAAB with a reliable and visionary sounding board and will be an influential figure at ground level and across the region. 

 

 

The AFL’s Asia Development Manager, Simon Highfield, is thrilled with the announcement, and looking forward to working with the trio. 

“AFL Asia is excited about the appointments of Paul, Rob and Rod to the Advisory Board, and they will bring a wealth of experience and passion to their roles. We have a mountain of work to do, and we are confident that the Board will be able to take this on and get the job done. 

“There was an extraordinary response to the nomination process. I’d like to thank all our nominees, and I look forward to continuing to work with them through all things football in Asia”, Highfield said.

Existing AAAB Members Grant Dooley and Matt Gale will serve out the remaining year of their two-year terms in 2021, which shapes to be an important year for not only for the AAAB but for the region as it plans holistically post COVID-19.