I have been a bit of a broken record for a while now, shouting that attentions need to turn to the FA Women’s National Leagues to help develop them and importantly bring money into the divisions which will allow the teams involved to grow and not get left behind by the top two tiers, the WSL and Championship.
So it is very welcomed new that the FA have announced a new board that will oversee the development of the FA Women’s National League.
The new board has been formed to drive forward women’s football across Tiers 3 and 4 of the Women’s Football Pyramid, taking on responsibilities such as agreeing and implementing the strategic direction of the FA Women’s National League and its competitions, as well as making recommendations in respect of commercial partnerships, league development and policy.
The board will report to the FA Women’s Board and is made up of professionals making waves in their respective industries, with men and woman working in football, as well as in areas including finance and media.
The variety of skills, experience and diversity of thought that each member brings will be invaluable in supporting the League Management Committee, who continue to run the league day-to-day, and together ensure the league’s competitions are progressing and developing.
The board has a valuable and important blend of independent and club representation, alongside some FA representatives including Kelly Simmons, the organisation’s director of the women’s professional game.
The board’s independent chair will be Sandi Dosanjh, who is currently a consulting director at KPMG, as well as a former player of Wolverhampton Wanderers. “Football has always been a happy space for me and the opportunity to chair this board and to drive and accelerate the progression of the women’s game is both humbling and inspiring,” said Dosanjh.
Adding, “Having played football since I was a young girl, and as a current player in the women’s game, I’m incredibly proud to be able to bring 15 years of corporate governance experience and combine it with my passion for the game to realise and maximise the potential of the FA Women’s National League.”
The board’s immediate role will be to assess how the pandemic has affected the FA Women’s National League and plan for how it will come back even stronger at the start of the 2021-22 season, and to create a new League strategy with clear priorities for the Leagues development over the next three years.
The FA WNL Board members are:
Chairperson: Sandi Dosanjh
Independent: Jessica Creighton
Independent: To be confirmed in due course
Club representative: David Mallin (Huddersfield Town)
Club representative: Tim Greenwell (Southampton FC)
League representative: Carol West
FA representative: Sue Hough
FA representative: Kelly Simmons
This move should go a long way to moving the women’s football pyramid forward and we very much look forward to hopefully building a line of communication with the board and sharing their great work.