Mel Mallam appointed to Football Australia as General Counsel

Mel Mallam

Football Australia have announced the appointment of Mel Mallam as General Counsel.

Mallam returns to Australia having lived in Zurich of Switzerland for the past 15 years, working with several global brands and will commence with Football Australia on October 1 2022.

Mallam’s extensive history within sport has seen her work on two FIFA World Cups, the London 2012 Olympic Games, and an array of International and European Summer and Winter sporting events. Mallam’s first job in sport was also at the Sydney 2000 Olympic Games.

At FIFA, Mallam negotiated some of the world’s first digital media agreements in sport – with Facebook, Twitter, and Google, including the development of the first application for FIFA for the FIFA World Cup. This led her to segue into technology, working for global technology company Parallels as their global General Counsel (software and platform as a service) and then as Head of Legal and Compliance for fast-growing unicorn track Swiss scale-up Beekeeper – SAAS product for frontline workers.

Mallam has also previously held roles as Head of Legal and Compliance for Swiss watchmaker Breitling, Managing Director of Repucom in Switzerland, Senior Legal Counsel with the European Broadcasting Union/Eurovision (the European alliance of public service media) and Commercial Legal Counsel with FIFA when she joined them as one of the first Australians to do so in 2008.

Football Australia Chief Executive Officer James Johnson was delighted to appoint Mallam, who will be a member of the Football Australia Executive Leadership Team, to such an important and expanded role as the organisation continues to drive forward the bold and ambitious 15-year vision embodied by the ‘XI Principles for the future of Australian football.

“Mel will bring an outstanding set of skills, experience, and football acumen to Football Australia. She was the strongest candidate in an extensive recruitment process and will play a key role in Australian football,” Johnson said in a statement.

“Mel is not just a lawyer who likes football or works in sport. She has formal academic sports law qualifications, experience as an athlete and administrator and an understanding of both football and sport from grassroots to elite. Mel previously sat on several sporting association boards including Capital Football.

“Mel is well placed to help drive our strategic agenda and, our football structural reform, commercial, regulatory, governance and integrity priorities.

“Mel’s 20 years of experience covers leadership roles across a number of global organisations and industries including with FIFA in Zurich, and we look forward to welcoming her back to her place of birth, Australia.”

Mallam grew up on a farm in the Northern Rivers of New South Wales and was one of the first to graduate with Australia’s first ever double degrees in Sport and Law at Southern Cross University.

Mallam was excited to be returning to Australia and join Football Australia in this key role,” Mallam said via press release.

“Football took me to Switzerland fifteen years ago to work with FIFA and now it is bringing me home to work for Football Australia in my home state of New South Wales.

“I look forward to joining Football Australia at such an exciting period for the sport and being part of the new management team, that is driving a fresh 15-year vision and clear strategic agenda for the sport.”

Federal Budget commits $97 million investment for sport programs

The 2024-25 Federal Budget, which was released on Tuesday night, includes more than $97 million over two years to the ASC to extend Sporting Schools, the Local Sporting Champions, and Local Para Champions programs, and participation funding to help more Australians get active.

This two-year extension runs until 30 June 2026 and helps kids of all different sports afford an opportunity to play at a local level if they come from and under privileged background.

Football Australia is a part of the Sporting Schools program, with each state offering participation Officers and local clubs that are ready to implement in-school and after-school programs for students of ages up to Year 8, plus all abilities programs.

Football Australia use this program to link local football clubs with schools to facilitate an ongoing relationship and provide further opportunity for students to continue their football journey outside of school, whether that be MiniRoos Kick Off, MiniRoos Club or Junior Football.

More than 24,000 young Australians will be supported with the Local Sporting Champions (LSC) and Local Para Champions (LSP) grants programs continuing for a further two years.

These are fantastic programs that have supported Australia’s best athletes including many Matildas like Courtney Nevin, Cortnee Vine, Alex Chidiac, Teagan Micah and Clare Hunt.

World Cup veteran’s Caitlin Foord and Ellie Carpenter also rose to success with assistance from the LSC program throughout their junior careers.

Australian Sports Commission CEO Kieren Perkins OAM mentions the importance of this investment to continue critical national sporting programs.

“Once again, I want to thank Minister Wells and the Australian Government for their continued support and investment in Australian sport,” Perkins said in a statement.

“This funding extends critical sport participation programs like the Participation Grant program and Sporting Schools which provides free and fun sporting opportunities to more than two million students each year.

“This follows last week’s announcement of $249.7 million to upgrade the AIS Campus to ensure our athletes have access to the world’s best testing and training facilities, and accommodation ahead of the Brisbane 2032 Olympic and Paralympic Games.”

This is a fantastic initiative that will benefit football amongst other sports and has a history of helping kids of all skill levels play in their respective sport.

The Federal Budget have put in almost $350 to improve sport, mostly around the 2032 Olympic Games but it is great to see some investment in the world game after the huge success of the Women’s World Cup last year.

The biggest Female Football Week to date draws to a close

Female Football week is at its climax across the country with each respective state firmly involved in what has been a monumental year of growth and perseverance with one of the hottest topics amongst the sporting plethora across the nation.

Symbolising the significant strides in which female football has made down under, off the back of its maiden World Cup hosting tenure.

Football Queensland throughout the grand occasion were busy shining a spotlight upon the continuous growth of participation, encouraging women of all ages to become involved and immersed within the global game.

Football Victoria – Commentary

Football Victoria (FV) celebrated women’s football week in style.

Round 8 of the National Premier League Women’s (NPLW) competition within Victoria was unique throughout its coverage, with every match throughout the round featuring a female commentator.

A monumental feat spearheaded by the FV Commentary team, this was the first time an all female commentary round was executed.

Football Queensland

FQ CEO Robert Cavallucci disclosed his appreciation for the momentous occasion via the FQ website.

“While celebrations like FFW serve as a crucial milestone in FQ’s journey towards achieving 50/50 gender parity by 2027 and helps to further reinforce our commitment to enhancing accessibility and inclusivity, our support is not confined to this week, as we remain dedicated to prioritising our female football community year-round.”

Football Queensland – Award Ceremony

Paying homage to Referees, Club Volunteers, Players and Community Champions of the year was conducted through awards up for grabs.

FQ showcased an award ceremony towards multiple facets of football throughout the state.

A nice incentive dedicated to the recognition and appraisal of the hard work undertaken by different areas of football.

The Female Football Week club of the year was awarded to Central Football Club following their extraordinary contribution to female football within Queensland.

Displayed throughout the clubs commitment to female football, the club are fully dedicated to the advancement of women’s football.

Harvesting a fostering environment throughout the club, alongside the nourishment of young promising female footballers has been symbolised by FQ.

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