Life Membership of Northwood Falcons Softball Club has been awarded to the following people in recognition of their outstanding service to the club and its members
Glenys (Brockley) was a member of the first Ashwood team entered in 1961 and played with Ashwood until the 1883/84 season when she won the best & fairest trophy in B Grade. Glenys was a member of the first premiership side in 1962/63 in B Grade, the first A Grade premiership team of 1969/70, and in 3 A Grade runners-up sides. She played many years of representative softball as a catcher. Glenys was a long-serving committee member, coached Pixie teams and organised the Club’s umpiring commitments until moving away from the district after her marriage. She was always an inspiration, both as a player and as a club girl. Glenys was made Ashwood Softball Club’s first life member in 1977.
Elaine started with Ashwood Softball Club in 1973 and quickly became a scorer but soon realised that coaching was going to be her main interest. Elaine took on the role of representative for the Essex Heights Primary School on the Ashwood Softball Club Committee. Under Elaine’s stewardship in the 70s, Essex Heights fielded as many as 7 teams at Waverley. Elaine spent many hours over the years conducting clinics at various schools in the area recruiting players for the club. Elaine was Secretary of Ashwood Softball Club for many years and continued in that role after the amalgamation with Waverley North Softball Club to form Northwwo Falcons. Through this time, Elaine was attending coaching & scoring courses and was involved with a many as 3 teams each game day. Ashwood Softball Club awarded Elaine Life Membership in 1985.With the formation of Northwood Falcons, Elaine & Arthur Allsopp took control of the training of the Pixie teams – the first year Falcons fielded 5 U14 teams and 11 Pixie teams – with great success. At the same time, Elaine was also heavily involved with the under-age Waverley teams and was a stalwart supporter of the Softball Canberra Australia Day and Waverley Softball Association Easter carnivals, either managing, scoring or coaching. In 1997, as a tribute and appreciation of her outstanding services to the junior teams of the Club, Northwood Falcons created the Elaine Schultz Trophy which is awarded each year for the most promising junior player. Waverley Softball Association awarded Elaine a Life Membership in recognition of her many years of dedication to softball.
Chas was a foundation & committee member of Waverley North Softball Club in 1971. He held many positions on the Committee including Treasurer and President (4 years). Chas was Assistant Coach or Coach for many teams from Juniors to our top team. He also helped with our club umpiring duties. On the demise of the Blackburn North Softball Club, Chas was responsible for recruiting some of their senior players to join Waverley North to enable the Club to become an A Grade club. Chas was Club Manager of Waverley North for 3 years. Chas was awarded Life Member of Waverley North in 1983. Chas subsequently helped in the formation of Northwood Falcons when Waverley North and Ashwood softball clubs amalgamated in 1985.Chas was elected to Waverley Executive in 1974, appointed Treasurer until 1976. Chas was President of the Waverley Softball Association for 7 years (1976-1979 & 1989-1991), for which service he was appointed as a life-member of the association in 1990. Chas served on various sub-committees for the Victorian Softball Association including 12 years as Chairman of State League & 15 years as Chairman of Interview Board and also as Chairman of Selectors several times. The Victorian Softball Association awarded Chas the Merle Short award in 1995. In 2000, Chas was awarded the Australian Sports Medal, a commemorative award within the Australian Honours system, in recognition of his services to softball.
Lena was a foundation member of Waverley North in 1971. Lena fulfilled many positions in the formative years of the Club including Uniform Manager, Team Manager and Social Secretary. Lena was responsible for the development of scorers. As the number of teams grew, Lena often scored several teams on game days. Lena served on the Committeee from 1979-1985 including 3 years as Treasurer and was also very active in the Social and Fund Raising sub-committees. Lena was awarded Life Member of Waverley North in 1983.Lena was scorer for many years for Waverley U14 & U17 teams. More recently, Lena has been teaching new members of the Club the correct scoring procedures and still scores for the Falcons teams whenever needed. Lena was the scorer for winning Queensland Red Sox team in the 2002 World Masters Championships.
Sharon was a member of the first Waverley North softball team. She is the only member of that team still actively involved with the Club. Sharon started her coaching career at 14 years of age coaching Pixies, various junior & senior teams and also as playing coach of the A Grade team, winning numerous premierships along the way. Sharon was one of the first 2 players to be appointed to the Committee as player repesentatives. Sharon served on the Committee continuously in many positions, Social Secretary, Assistant Treasurer, Treasurer and Vice-President, until the amalgamation of Waverley North and Ashwood to form Northwood Falcons. Waverley North Softball Club awarded Sharon Life Membership in 1983. Sharon continued in various roles, Secretary, President of the new club.Sharon was nominated to be a foundation member of the Waverley Players and Supporters Association and a committee officer in 1979-80. Sharon has always been very active for Waverley Softball Association, playing many times in various representative teams, coaching at all age groups, including 10 years as the U17 Coach. Sharon was also the Assistant Coach for the U19 Waverley team playing against the visiting Chinese team. Sharon was also Assistant Coach for the Victorian Open Womens team. Sharon is still coaching, managing or scoring for Waverley at the State Championships and carnivals. Sharon was presented with the Waverley Service Award in 1997.
Arthur joined North Waverley as Club Coach in 1974. When Arthur accepted the Club’s invitation to become Club Coach it caused great surprise and some envy amongst the other Waverley clubs. Arthur was recognised by the greater softball fraternity as the doyen of coaches and the Club was very priveleged to have him until 1986 when le left to join his son at Burwood East. Because of his outstanding personal sporting ability – first class cricketer (RH bat & wicket-keeper, played 21 matches for NSW & Victoria 1929-36, including as a team mate of Sir Donald Bradman), state baseballer, single figure (handicap) golfer, and a competitive squash player, Arthur was able to impart his sporting knowledge & develop young players. Arthur concentrated on developing the players and coaches at the junior levels. Because of his ability & efforts, the club achieved unparalleled success e.g., 4 successive grand finals for 3 premierships in Pixie A and in 1978/79 four premierships. The skills imparted, combined with the ability of many of his pupils, enabled the club to grow and reach the status of A Grade.Arthur’s experience was also of considerable benefit to the Committee where his knowledge of softball was invaluable to such a young club. He also umpired for the club and helped our potential umpires. He was certainly qualified to do so as he held an Australian badge and umpired in the 1954 & 1965 World Series. Having helped to form the Waverley Association in 1961, he was almost a full-time groundsman and ground manager. Arthur’s success with Waverley teams was legendary, e.g., his Victorian U14 teams were undefeated over a 20 year period. Most of the State players of the time had either been coached or taught by Arthur at some time in their careers. He constantly stressed he was a teacher first and a coach second. Arther was awarded Life Membership of Waverley North in 1984 and later the same year he was also awarded Life membership of the Victorian Softball Association. The Australian Softball Association honoured him by creating the Arthur Allsopp shield which is awarded to the winning U16 Boys team at the National Championships. Arthur died in February 1993, shortly before his 85th birthday.
Bill joined Waverley North in 1974 and immediately became very active in the Club. Bill was Treasurer from 1979-80 and President from 1980-4. He managed and scored for various teams and was also primarily responsible for Waverley North and, later, Northwood Falcons, entering the Club Championships. Bill was Chairman and leader of the sub-committee that oversaw the merger of North Waverley with Ashwood to form the Northwood Falcons. Bill was Co-President with Geoff Mansfield from Ashwood for the initial year. Bill was the driving force behind Northwood Falcons participating in the National Fast Pitch competition, being Manager, Scorer & transport organiser! Bill also continued to umpire and work as Club Groundsman for many years. Northwood Falcons awarded Life Membership to Bill in 1986.Bill was elected to Waverley Executive in 1983 and served as Treasurer from 1984-91. During his time on the Executive Bill was very active with the Waverley Easter Carnivals. Bill was awarded Life Membership of Waverley Softball Association in 1994. Bill served as President of the Victorian softball Association from 1989 for 10 years. He also sat on the VSA Interview Panel and State League Committee during this period. Bill was awarded Life Membership of the VSA in 2004. Bill was elected to the Australian Softball Association Board in 1991 and was an active member until 2005. In 2000, Bill was awarded the Australian Sports Medal, a commemorative award within the Australian Honours system, in recognition of his services to softball. On 14 October 2006, Bill was presented with life membership of Softball Australia at the annual Softball Australia Awards of Excellence dinner in Melbourne.
I followed my sisters into softball at the age of 8 starting with Essex Heights Softball Club which became Ashwood Softball Club in the Seniors. My first memory of softball is running across the diamond directly to second base and bypassing first base all together. Throughout my further 30 years playing softball I have experienced every emotion from embarrassment to elation but most of all laughter and the friendships I have made surpass everything else. Throughout my junior years my fondest times are when I played for Waverley in the Rep teams. At the age of 14 I took up the rewarding position of coaching the Pixie C to a Premiership and continuing coaching for many years after that. During this time I was very involved with the club and won the Best Club Girl Trophy. After Ashwood Softball Club amalgamated with Waverley North and became Falcons Softball Club we had a very successful run in B Grade and won 5 Premierships in a row. And there I stayed for many, many happy years. I am proud to say that I started playing B Grade with Sharon Stocker in my team and was still playing B Grade when her daughter Karlie was old enough to play in B Grade with me as well.I love the game and the fact that after playing for 30 years I am still learning and able to play the sport to a competitive level. As I now qualify to be able to play in ‘Master Tournaments’ (i.e. over the age of 35) a new level of softball has opened and I am enjoying softball as much as I ever have.
Jesse joined Waverley North in 1983 from the Nottinghill Club where he was a coach and player. He immediately became heavily involved in all our Club activities acting variously as Team Manager, Club Treasurer and Assistant Coach of many teams from Juniors to Open age. With the amalgamation of Ashwood and Waverley North to become Northwood Falcons, Jesse continued his committment to the club and to softball generally. Jesse has served Falcons as a Committee member and Treasurer. For many years he was Club Equipment Officer. He has always been, and still is, available for umpiring duties whenever called upon. Jesse’s undoubted contribution to the Club has been through his coaching since 1985, including several Premierships ranging from U14B to the ultimate, last year’s Open Trophy – Falcons first. Jesse’s ability as a coach has resulted in him being offered positions as Head Coach from other clubs, an offer which has always been refused.Beyond Northwood Falcons, Jesse represented Victoria in the National Open Mens Championship held in Canberra in 1986. Jesse has been a Waverley Coach several times and also an Assistant and Specialist coach on 3 occasions for the Victorian U16 girl’s team. Last year was appointed Senior Coach and led Victoria to runners-up in the 2005 National Championships. Jesse has been re-appointed in that role for the 2006 National Championship
Dianne’s softball journey begins with Waverley North softball club in 1974. It didn’t take long to experience the first taste of success when, in 1975, Waverley North Pixie B were crowned Premiers. Premierships were also won in the following year in Pixie A, this time as captain of the team, again in 1977 with Femme D Grade, and again in 1980 in the A Reserve team. Grades were very different then, perhaps only A Reserve is recognised nowadays. 1979 saw the first of many representative selections with Waverley U16 Blue Sox. I can assure you that the competition for places in both Red and Blue was fierce in 1979 with well over 300 players trialling to make the team. You had to be good to get in either team, and at most tournaments around the country you would find Red and Blue Sox playing each other for the title. 1981/82 and 1982/83 began the coaching career of our nominee with stints as the Pixie B1 coach in the first year, and then Pixie C the following year. 1983 saw recognition of 10 years of service for a combined Waverley North/Northwood Falcons. 1984 saw our nominee playing for Falcons in the State League competition, the fore-runner to the Ausport Classic. 1989 was the first ‘official’ position held, that of Players Representative, then 1990 the second with a position on the Falcons committee, continuing throughout 1990. In 2004, Dianne coached a Pixie A to Runners Up. A career coaching highlight was guidance of the Waverley Under 12 Red Sox in 2004 at the Australia Day Carnival in Canberra and the Waverley Easter Carnival in 2004. The team made the semis in Canberra and won the Easter comp beating Canberra Gold in a thrilling tie-breaker in the Grand Final. A championship winning coach! 2005 saw a transition from playing/coaching to a more managerial position with the Waverley U14 Red Sox. In 2006, Dianne was elected to the Falcons Committee and in 2007 was elevated to the lofty position of Club Secretary. My favourite story about Tich is the A reserve Grand Final against Rebels many years ago. We had another girl who most in the competition would tell you was the best pitcher going around. I was coaching that game, and she mentioned to me that she really didn’t want to pitch and was not feeling at all confident about this game. I told her she was “the best” and to put all that stuff out of her mind and go do the job. Mind you, this was 5 minutes before the game. Well, it was only TWO PITCHES in to the Grand Final and we were 2-0 down when I made the pitching change, and Tich came to the plate. In what was a quite magnificent performance, Dianne held the very powerful Rebels hitting line up to a solitary single for the rest of the game. Unfortunately, we could not score ourselves and we lost 2-0, but her performance made me realise that I should have started with her. I subsequently found out that Rebels were terrified that Tich would be the starter. I can also tell you that Dianne has reduced some very good hitters to tears… very ably supported by her sister, Sharon. Now, it would be fair to say that Tich’s pitching speed could probably be measured with a sun dial. She certainly didn’t wear out too many catchers gloves. This was a source of constant annoyance to opposition hitters whom she would make wait as long as she could before pitching one time, and then quick-pitch them the next time… and many times strike them out. Can you imagine how it felt to be struck out by someone who’s pitches lost the race with a tortoise? Well, that was where Sharon came in to it… she just could not resist reminding someone that they were either just about to strike out, or just had. Anyway, please join me in thanking Dianne Otter for her many years of service to Falcons and in congratulating on her life membership of Northwood Falcons softball club.
Georgie played for Waverley North and played and coached at the Northwood Falcons for around 30 years. She started when she was 6 years old playing T-ball for Waverley North in 1977 under the guidance of Arthur Allsop. Moving up through the junior grades Georgie went on to play representative softball for the Waverley U16s. Georgie made it up to A Grade when she was in her teens and also played for a lengthy time in A Reserve. In her 20′s and 30′s Georgie played for B and B Reserve and was player coach for many seasons. In the words of Elaine Schultz, “She has been a great strength in the club particularly in coaching and playing in the B Reserve Femme team. She willingly undertook the difficult task of playing and coaching when only young herself.” Georgie also coached secondary teams for around five years.
Megan began playing T Ball while she was attending Essex Heights Primary and has played through Pixie, Under Age and Femme ranks. She like Elizabeth Caldwell (they are both the same age and progressed through the teams together) was always willing to help out in any capacity. She did her own and many other extra umpiring duties and there was no financial reward, played double games, helped as an assistant coach and then took on coaching on her own. She has a great rapport with the younger girls and is very popular with everyone. She is a great girl always willing to help without any complaint. I am pleased she has stayed for the club for so long and contributed so well in many ways to the club’s success.Megan became interested in softball when she was in Grade 2 at school. Elaine Shultz came to Essex Heights Primary School to speak to the children about T Ball. Megan wanting to be in everything asked if she could go along. Expecting the enthusiasm to wane after a couple of years has proved to be wrong. Megan started as a T Baller, graduated to Pixie’s and moved through the various grades. After many new bats and gloves Megan continued to play for over 18 years. Megan owes a lot to Elaine Shultz for the introduction to the game and importantly as a wonderful mentor and supporter which contributed to Megan’s enthusiasm for the game. Megan coached the little T Ballers for seven years having a natural rapport with the beginners and was able to radiate her love of the game and enthusiasm onto the girls she coached. This has had a flow on effect to Megan being a Joey leader until recently Megan would leave home at 8 am and end up returning at 6 pm – coaching, umpiring, playing, often filling in on other teams or just staying to watch games. Megan played in various positions – 1st base, short stop, catcher and outfield. Megan’s awards have included: Most valued player, ’98/’99 and ’05/’06; Coach’s Award ’03/’04; B Reserve Premiers ’03/’04 and ’05/’06; Best Club Girl Award ’99 and ’06.Megan is probably one of the few girls who can lay claim to have left the pitch in an ambulance. Megan was not playing as she had suffered concussion the day before as the result of a fall on a Venturer hike and spent the night at Monash Hospital. Keen not to miss the game Megan was on duty to retrieve the bat after the player ran to 1st base. Megan went to retrieve the bat only to be hit across the head by the player practicing her swing. The girls gave her a guard of honour with their bats as Megan was dispatched to Monash Hospital for the second time in one day. We are pleased to say that it did not affect her softball ability!
Liz started playing T Ball at the age of 5, before she started school at Solway Primary. Her elder sister Ruth was playing and Elizabeth was coming to practice and I suggested she also play too. She didn’t play the next year, but when in Grade 1 she started again and has played ever since. She is a very pleasant, helpful girl with a lovely disposition and has always helped out in any way she was asked. She played double games when we were short of players, helped as assistant coach, did her own and may extra umpiring duties and generally ‘filled the gaps’ in many situations always with a smile and without a grumble. As she got older she began coaching in her own right and is very popular with everyone. Over the last five years she and Megan Holman have been responsible for keeping their Femme team together and functioning well. She has served on the Falcons general committee and has been a true Falcons stalwart and I hope she keeps up her involvement with the club for many years to come.
Life Members of Ashwood and Waverley North were automatically awarded Life Membership of Northwood Falcons at the 1985 merger.