Congratulations to our new Rookie in Western Australia – Justin Power.
Having umpired his first WAFL Grand Final in 2016 alongside two fellow GF debutants and close mates Nathan Williamson and Mark Worabec, Justin is looking forward to the season ahead and the new experiences that will bring.
Like many other umpires, Justin joined umpiring for some fitness and pocket money when he joined a school friend at training one night. Justin realised early on that a playing career was probably not going to get him to the elite level, but perhaps umpiring might.
So Justin commenced in 2005 as a 13-year old in the West Perth Junior Football League. He continued to umpire juniors until he was invited to join the junior talent squad in 2009, and in 2010, he was selected onto the West Australian Amateur Football League (WAAFL) umpiring panel. Justin worked his way up through colts, reserves and league football and his highlight was umpiring the 2011 A-League Grand Final.
In 2012 he was invited to trial and then selected onto the WAFL umpiring panel where he spent the first two years in the development squad umpiring colts and reserves football. In 2013 he made his WAFL league debut, umpired his first WAFL Colts Grand Final and then proceeded to umpire the next two WAFL Colts’ Grand Finals in 2014 and 2015. In 2016, he umpired his 50th WAFL game and the 2016 WAFL Grand Final. Justin was also involved in the National Officiating Scholarship Program in 2016.
Justin works as a Commercial Accountant for Compass Group, a company that provides catering and support services to a range of sectors including offshore and remote, healthcare and education. He spends most of his spare time at the beach or along the coast at local cafes. He has an active interest in most sports and doesn’t mind a competitive game of tennis, golf or cricket and also enjoys going to the gym and swimming.
Justin praises the assistance provided by Craig O’Donoghue and Gareth Parker, both previous coaches in the WAFL, who assisted him with the skills necessary to become a stronger umpire but also took an interest in, and had a great impact, on his personal development.
Justin is motivated by his family and a constant desire to improve and to reach the highest level. He admires the professionalism, composure and work ethic of AFL Field Umpire Jeff Dalgleish. “Jeff is always striving to improve himself and sets a very high standard both on and off the field.”
His advice to up and coming umpires is to be coachable and willing to take on board feedback from anyone who takes an interest in their development as there will always be some piece of advice from each person that you can add to your game that will help you reach that next level.
We look forward to watching Justin’s progress in season 2017!
Article written by: AFLUA Marketing and Communications Coordinator, Peter Kelly