Nominees for 2018 Volunteer of the Year

Over the next week, AFL New Zealand will be announcing the nominees for all seven categories of the annual AFL New Zealand High Performance Awards. 


Categories include:

  • AFL New Zealand Coach of the year
  • AFL New Zealand Senior Player of the year
  • AFL New Zealand Female Player of the Year
  • AFL New Zealand U18 Player of the year
  • AFL New Zealand U17 Player of the year
  • AFL New Zealand Rising Star
  • AFL New Zealand Volunteer of the year

AFL New Zealand would like to congratulate the following nominees for the 2018 Volunteer of the Year. 


The winner will be announced at the 2018 High Performance Awards which will be held on Sunday the 22nd of April at Mac’s Function Centre in Wellington. 


Congratulations to all the nominees!


Donna Gill

Wellington based Donna Gill has made a impact in the development of the sport in the nations capital over past few years.

Donna gives up her time to help out with the local Wellington league, AFL New Zealand Youth competition and the AFL New Zealand Academy to ensure events run smooth and efficient.

Her daughter, Sydney will be representing the New Zealand Youth Girls over the ANZAC campaign.


Fran Serrano

Fran Serrano first became involved with AFL in New Zealand by offering his services to help out at the AFLNZ Regional combine in Auckland.

Over the past few years, his involvement in the community has grown with his three children (Sebastian, Valentina and Max) now all playing AFL.

Fran volunteers his time to help out with the AFL New Zealand Youth Competition, Academy and most recently, the AFL New Zealand Premiership.

Fran was recently named manager of the New Zealand Youth Girls for their ANZAC campaign.


Howard Gilbert

Howard Gilbert has been involved in multiple roles with the University Blues Football Club in the Auckland local league for over 20 years and was named as the Team Manager of 2017 AFL New Zealand Premiers, the Southern Saints last season.

In April last year, Howard took up the role of Team Manager for the New Zealand senior side during the ANZAC Campaign and continued this role for the 2017 AFL International Cup in August.


Mitch Ryan

It has been a busy year for Aucklander Mitch Ryan.

The 24 year old was the first ever coach of a New Zealand team to win a series over a touring Australian side when the AFLNZ Youth Girls defeated the Mornington Peninsula Youth Girls over ANZAC weekend.

Mitch was also the coach of local Auckland Club side, the North Shore Tigers who took out the 2017 competition for the first time in nine years and to cap things off, Ryan was Assistant Coach of the Auckland NPC side who won back to back titles in December last year.

Mitch has also given up his time to help coach local North Shore Secondary School sides in the AFL Cup.


Shane Goodwin

Shane was initially involved in the local scene in Wellington through his son Beren participating in the AFL New Zealand Academy.

In the past two year’s Shane has taken on a coaching role through the AFL New Zealand Youth Competition and Wellington Academy and was the assistant coach with role with the Academy Level 1 team in 2017.

Shane will be the Assistant Coach of the AFL New Zealand Academy Level 2 side during the ANZAC campaign.


Steve Langridge

Steve Langridge is the current President of the Canterbury AFL league and is making a positive impact in the Christchurch community.

Motivated to grow the game in Canterbury, his involvement with AFL runs deeper as Steve volunteers his time to umpire in the CAFL, NPC and most recently the AFL New Zealand Premiership.