There are always plenty of highlights for me at a Hobart Chargers home game night. I love the music, the lights, the videos, Rex (of course!) and the basketball! But the highlight of last Saturday night was having the very real privilege of presenting three life memberships on court at half time.
The Chargers have been in existence since 1997. Since that time, only 3 life memberships have been granted. We see life membership as the pinnacle for recognising long standing and valued service to the club. We know there are many members who have given of themselves to the Association over many years. In fact, every week we enjoy hundreds of hours of volunteer efforts to make our club work. We value and appreciate this service and want to recognise more of this volunteer contribution.
According to our records however, only three volunteers have given continuous service to the Hobart Chargers since its inception in 1997. It is this ongoing and uninterrupted service over such a long period of time that I am in awe of.
So it was with great pleasure I got to stand centre court with Kay Bailey, Sandra Robinson and Josh Byrne.
Kaye and Sandra have been volunteers with the Hobart Chargers since the Association’s inception. Prior to this, they also volunteered for the Tassie Devils.
It was with great pleasure I got to stand centre court with Kay Bailey, Sandra Robinson and Josh Byrne.
Kaye’s and Sandra’s faces are well-known to basketball fans and players around the country. Every Game Night for the last 21 seasons, they have worked mainly on the front door helping our fans get entry to games. They have dealt calmly and patiently with the questions, the requests for free entry, and the changes in technology and venue without hesitation and completely supportive of the Club’s policies and goals. Kaye’s daughter Nellie is as much a stalwart of the Club as Kaye herself; passionate about her basketball and her players! Given that our games are in winter, their willingness to sit in the coldest spot at a Chargers game; year in and year out is to be admired and is highly valued. Our new venue partners at the DEC have made a point of letting us know how much they value the work Kaye and Sandra do helping with entries. We certainly had a few challenges last year learning how to make entry work effectively at the DEC. We couldn’t have achieved such a smooth process without Kaye and Sandra’s help.
Josh Byrne started to volunteer with the Chargers 21 seasons ago when he was about 15 years old. Unlike many teenagers who move on to other interests as they go through their late teens and early 20’s, Josh has remained committed to the Chargers and worked every season.
At first, he helped out with the stadium set up and pack up. He would lend a hand to Sue Leedham wherever he was needed. Ultimately, he learned the role of Game Commissioner and became our expert in this field. As Game Commissioner, Josh is SEABL’s representative at the game. He makes sure our games are played according to the SEABL rules; that the teams, referees and officials have the information and resources they require; and that SEABL are advised of results and issues. While most nights it is smooth sailing, there have been a few with interesting challenges. Most of the fans wouldn’t know that there have been issues though, with the confident and professional way that Josh has dealt with the challenges that have come his way.
On behalf of all Chargers fans…thanks Josh, Kaye and Sandra. We couldn’t do it without you!