Name: Donna Milne
Birth place: Christchurch but raised in Southland
Position within Club/Association: President of the Invercargill Dodgers softball club, recruitment, sponsorship and volunteer captain, coach Dodgers u15’s, u17’s, assisting with the dodgers little league girls (aiming for the Grand Prix in Christchurch 2011), head coach of the Southland u15 girls, sit on the JAB/SAB committee's and play in the Major Reserve B competition.
Favorite Player: Jennie Finch USA, not only is she a fantastic pitcher she is an amazing ambassador for Softball. It would be great to replicate her softball programs for our children.
Favorite Movie: Horrors, I am a horror movie buff. My favorite is the SAW series.
Favorite TV Show: Outrageous fortune and now it is all gone forever!
Name 3 people you would like to invite to Dinner and why?
Entrée: Oprah Winfrey - she had a terrible childhood but from that, she grew into the most amazing compassionate person who has helped millions and made millions in the process.
Main: Jennie Finch - so much I could learn from her about softball and marketing.
Desert: Johnny Depp for so many reasons that I just can’t write here…..
How did you come about being involved in Softball?
My husband Kris has always played top level club softball here in Southland and in Western Australia and I played for Dodgers as a kid. When we came back to Southland 7 years ago we wanted our girls to play tee ball but Dodgers had no coaches and only 1 team for kids; so I decided to get in and help.
Who has been your greatest influence in Softball?
I love surrounding myself with like minded people who have sport at heart and are always innovative, forward thinking and have that “roll up your sleeves” up attitude. I admire the wealth of strength, knowledge and passion of those who volunteer their time and energy to Dodgers (including my wonderful family) to many name
What is your advice to a volunteer starting out at a club?
Wow! Where do I start, have softball at heart first and foremost, be clear about how much spare time you can offer the sport and do what you say you are going to do.
What is your vision for Softball in 5 years time from a local Perspective?
We are all competitive on the diamonds but off the field we need to work collectively as an association to increase our critical numbers. Dodgers have grown from 2 to 20 teams over the past 7 years; I would love to help other clubs realize the same growth and success. We need to be rolling out innovative programs, like “JUMP” for junior umpires and the Pink zone to get more girls involved. I also think there is more scope for the social game in softball which is cheaper to play and more rule relaxed.
What is your greatest achievement in Softball as a valued volunteer?
Rebuilding Dodgers over the past 7 years has been a true test of my resolve; I am so thankful to my many volunteers, the ILT Foundation and the ILT for their support in my vision. I needed to get people excited about playing our game, create a great structure and cater for many needs across many social demographics. Dodgers now have over 50 volunteers looking after 400 players; that is my success story. Our players and coaches are well supported, love the game and feature strongly at age group and development representative level.
What do you wish to achieve as a volunteer in the coming season(s)?
Immediate: Ensure that all Dodgers players and volunteers are happy and enjoying the game!
Working projects: I have some exciting new ideas that should help with dodgers fundraising, volunteers, player participation and retention for certain age groups. I want to get our club teams to the Grand Prix in Christchurch and have my very new Southland u15 girl’s team ready for our home tournament in Jan 2011
Future: My dream is to see Southland become a leading region in NZ because of our focus on retention and development. We need all clubs to recruit and retain numbers, not just 1 or 2 and it has to materialize from juniors up.