Chair of Hockey Wales Conrad Funnell is to stand down at the end of his tenure next month. Conrad has served as Chair for four and half years and a member of the board since 2016.
As well as the challenging task of navigating the organisation through the Covid pandemic, some of the highlights of Conrad’s tenure as Chair include both the Men’s and Women’s teams achieving their best finishes at the Commonwealth Games last summer and the Men’s team qualifying for the World Cup, which took them to India earlier this year. The Men’s senior squad has seen its highest ever ranking.
Conrad’s time on the board has also seen him drive forward the Young Ambassadors Programme. Juniormembership has also risen by thirty percent, increasing hockey engagement at its grassroots. Hockey Wales has also secured a Silver Fair Play Award from the women’s equality charity Chwarae Teg further highlighting hockey as a sport for all:
“My experience as Chair of Hockey Wales has been both rich with wonderful experiences and challenging, as we saw our way through the restrictions of Covid. One of my personal highlights was the chance for Wales to host the World Cup Qualifier, which saw the men’s team beat France to go through to the finals of the competition. I believe hockey has a vibrant future in Wales and, despite this being the end of my journey as Chair, I will always be a passionate member of the hockey family here.“
Whilst the board reviews the Chair position, elected board member Bill Riley will take up the role of interim Chair of Hockey Wales.
Bill Riley has been elected to the board for the past six years. An avid hockey player since the age of nine, he has captained the Gwent Men’s 3rd team and played for Cardiff & Met. Although no longer playing, he and his wife Louise are passionate supporters of the game at grassroots and senior levels in Wales, and all of his children continue the hockey legacy.
In his career as a mechanical engineer, Bill has led on many high-profile projects and is looking forward to taking up the role of interim Chair:
“I genuinely love hockey and watching hockey and only want to see hockey thrive in Wales. Having had the good fortune to play, coach and umpire hockey in Wales and contributed to the board for many years, I am very much looking forward to taking upthis new role to support the hockey community.“
CEO of Hockey Wales Paul Whapham:
“I would like to thank Conrad for his time and commitment to Hockey Wales. I am sure everyone at Hockey Wales would join me in wishing him well and there is no doubt that he will still be a strong advocate for the growth of Hockey in Wales.”
It’s expected a new permanent Chair will take up their role in the Autumn once the board has carried out a recruitment process.