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'Ready to Board' alumni look to fill key roles after FIFPRO programme

Employment Market Women News

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FIFPRO’s Ready to Board program empowering women to take decision-making roles in football boardrooms has wrapped up, with female players among those sharing their plans to take their careers to the next phase.

FIFPRO General Manager Britta Sluis told participants they would continue to offer support, wishing them every success in the next steps of their careers.

FIFPRO began the initiative with U.K.-based Women in Football in April following a decision to triple the number of women on its global board, and subsequent moves to increase the representation of women on regional FIFPRO boards.

The 14 participants include footballers, player union staff, lawyers and entrepreneurs. They come from Afghanistan, Australia, Canada, Denmark, Guatemala, Israel, Italy, the Netherlands, Senegal, Sweden, Switzerland and Uruguay.

“You’ve all made huge steps,” Sluis told the participants. “It’s not a goodbye. Come to us if you need any support. From the beginning, we wanted to get great women ready to take on all sorts of goals in leadership. I’m really happy we have made progress.”

FIFPRO General Secretary Jonas Baer-Hoffmann said the program has shown “the power and relevance” of continuing with programs for women and other groups with less representation in professional football.

The program was guided by Ebru Koksal, the chair of Women in Football who is a former chief executive of Galatasaray, with assistance from colleagues Jane Purdon, Professor Sue Bridgewater, Monique Choudhuri and Lungi Macebo.

The WIF experts assisted them with their personal development and shared advice about how to maximize their potential. In the next phase, Fran Boorman, founder of Goal 17, helped participants find a mentor to help them achieve objectives.

Signing off on the course that began in April, Koksal encouraged the 14 participants to stay in contact, work together and use the “power of networks” to achieve change in the football industry.