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Searle Nominated for 2014 Football Woman of the Year

Development coach Peta Searle has been nominated for the 2014 Football Woman of the Year Award.

Presented at the Grand Final Comedy Debate, the award recognises the significant contribution and impact women have had on the game.

Searle made history this year after becoming the first female to hold a coaching position at AFL level.

Working with St Kilda’s young up and coming players throughout the season, she played a role in the Saints’ VFL affiliate side, Sandringham, recording its first finals win since 2006 despite losing to Port Melbourne in the semi-finals.

This year’s Football Woman of the Year Award, run by the Essendon Women’s Network, will feature two categories including the Professional category in which Peta Searle is nominated and an Honorary category, with another important Saint recognised for her commitment.

Barbara Datson, the President of St Kilda’s womens’ group the Angels, has been nominated for her selfless devotion to the football club.

The positive achievements of young women in the industry will also be recognised with the establishment of an Emerging Leader Award.

Essendon Women’s Network chair Jane Grover said the Grand Final Comedy Debate has grown into one of the marquee events of Grand Final week.

“I’m delighted to announce the Football Woman of the Year Award has expanded to recognise the incredible work women are doing across Australian Rules football,” Grover said.

“The Football Woman of the Year Award is a significant announcement in AFL Grand Final week and a fantastic way to celebrate the achievements of these talented women who help grow and nurture the game from the grass roots level to the elite level of AFL.”

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