New Zealand’s southernmost football federation has a new chief executive for the 2022 season.
Dougal McGowan (52) has been appointed CEO of Football South, one of the country’s six regional federations.
McGowan succeeds Chris Wright who left Football South in October to take on the CEO role at sports technology company Friendly Manager.
Football South chair Graham Marshall announced the appointment, saying:
“Dougal has a long association with football in the region and is a familiar face to many in the game and community.
“With over 25 years’ experience in football in Otago and nationally, Dougal understands the environment and is passionate about making football accessible to all.
“Dougal has maintained his involvement in the grassroots of the game and is totally committed to our purpose of having more people playing, loving the game, and where everyone can reach their potential.”
“Dougal’s experience in the Not-For-Profit sector, including being previously CEO of the Otago Chamber of Commerce, means he has a deep understanding of the importance of the community and values that drive the organisation’s purpose.
“This experience along with previous governance in key roles with Football South, New Zealand Football and New Zealand Secondary Schools Football, provide a solid platform in delivering on our focus areas of participation, people, pathways, and Football South continuing to be a high performing organisation.”
About Dougal McGowan
McGowan says football has been a big part of his life since he began kicking a ball around with his brothers when he was three.
He grew up in Wellington and moved to Auckland where his football was played at Takapuna. He was good enough to earn selection to the New Zealand U-16 squad.
A shift south to Dunedin to study physical education saw him play for a number of clubs including Dunedin City, Roslyn-Wakari, Caversham and Dunedin Technical.
Off the field, he took on governance roles with stints as chair of Football South, chair of the New Zealand secondary schools board and until recently, he also served on the board of New Zealand Football while president of Football South.
He told the Otago Daily Times:
“I’m just really excited to work with a group of people and a board that has a real strong vision about what it wants to achieve in its community.
“They talk about participating and playing to the highest level they possibly can and being involved in getting opportunities.
“Football is a community builder. I really align myself with places that have strong values and connection to that community.”