British American Football Referees Association
 

BAFRA News


The BAFRA Board consists of 8 Directors who are elected for a period of 2 years. To ensure we maintain a level of continuity we open 4 of the posts for election every year. As such, this year the President, General Secretary, Director of Training and the Director without Portfolio #1 were open to nominations. Following the election process, I can confirm the following appointments:

Director of Training – James Ford-Bannister replacing Pete Tom who served as interim for Tzvi Lindeman who stood down due to illness.

General Secretary – Richard Moger replacing Paul Sutton

Director without Portfolio #1 - Pete Parsons returned unopposed

President - Davie Parsons, who was returned unopposed, takes this opportunity to thank those who have served on the Board:

  • Pete Thom is a long-time guardian of the sport and has from time to time served the board as Director of Training and other roles within the organization. Pete stepped up when Tzvi was sadly incapacitated due to his increasing illness. Picking up on initiatives set in motion by Tzvi and continuing to expand on plans to support training efforts throughout the country. The Board were most grateful to Pete for his steady guidance during the interim period ahead of the AGM, when the post was expected to be filled permanently.
  • Paul Sutton has provided the services of General Secretary to the Board for more than 12 years and I personally want to thank him for maintaining administration across the organization with the utmost professionalism throughout this period. The services he provides are those administrative tasks which often go unnoticed such as updating meeting minutes, booking and planning board meetings, administering memberships, working on the Examination Committee and so much more. This administration is what makes BAFRA stand out as one of the most professional and well-run organization is grassroots sport and I am proud to say this is down to Paul’s unwavering stewardship. Whilst not an active as an Official on the field for a number of years, Paul has always put his heart and soul into the organization and it is plain to see his joy at contributing in this way. I thank you on behalf of the Board and I am glad to know you are continuing to support your successor and other organizational committees ongoingly.
  • The late Tzvi Lindeman is remembered by the Board as a quiet but passionate supporter of development throughout the organization and we are still grieving for his passing earlier this year. I take this opportunity to again thank him for all he did whilst he could and for his professionalism to the end.
  • I would like to welcome on board James Ford-Bannister as Director of Training. He has, since earning the Alan Wilson Award in 2018, committed himself to personal development and providing support to Keith Wickham on the Elite Programme review team. I believe James is an excellent addition to the Board and he offers many great ideas which will provide new impetus to training and development of officials in this country for our members and the wider community.
  • Also joining us on the Board is Richard Moger as General Secretary. Richard joined BAFRA in 2014 and has established himself as a steady set of hands on the field as I am sure he will provide off it. With a background in education I have no doubts of his abilities to handle the workload and he will have my full support in achieving the necessary tasks assigned to this role. I understand Paul will be continuing to provide support for some time for which we are incredibly grateful.

Once again thank you to all Board members for serving for another year under challenging circumstances. The forthcoming year will provide many more which I am certain we will address with professionalism and commitment.

Thank you

Davie Parsons

President BAFRA

Note: Details of the AGM may be found under the private members only area of the website including statements from all Directors relating to their area of responsibility plus Q and A responses.


Davie Parsons

Director of Recruitment Ollie Maskell

The BAFRA Board and I have been working on a number of responses to the ongoing impact of Covid-19 on activities in UK. We are committed to ensuring your safety and supporting the British American Football community in any way we can. We are saddened to see the current suspension of the all British American Football related activities and gatherings in line with the various announcements BAFA have made in the last few weeks. The situation continues to be under review by BAFA and BAFRA is fully supportive of the decision that has been made. During this time we continue to work with the relevant people to ensure that we are ready to provide high-quality officials when American Football returns to Great Britain.

Many of us are facing a really tough few months, with key workers and those in the medical and care fields providing vital roles to keep us all safe. Many of you have been working round the clock to keep Britain safe, healthy and supplied, BAFRA is incredibly thankful for your efforts and for this we applaud you. Others are juggling working from home with family care commitments, financial concerns, job insecurity and uncertainty.

In this period some of you might find that you have more free time that usual and a desire to make a difference. This opportunity is aimed particularly at those of you who fall into this last group and are interested in expanding your knowledge of officiating.

As part of BAFRA’s preparations for when American Football returns, we continue to recruit passionate people who want to start their officiating career right now. This is your opportunity to take on something new, and develop your knowledge of a sport you love. Learn in your own time via skype or other online services and be ready to go out on the field just as soon as it is safe to do so. BAFRA will support you every step of the way.

That is why BAFRA is creating a special promotion reducing the joining fee for new members by 50% to just £15 until the 31st May 2020.

Follow the link here and complete the information form making sure to include your telephone number and we will call you right back. Complete your application by 31st May to be sure to take advantage of this special offer.


Ollie Maskell

On the 8th of March every year, sporting communities around the world celebrate women’s contribution, achievements and increasing visibility and call for the acceleration of gender equality. It’s a fantastic celebration of just how far we have come in raising awareness against bias.

Since BAFRA was formed back in 1984, we have had just over 40 women come through our ranks. However, we have never been in a situation where we have had 6 fully qualified and experienced Officials at any one time. We have that now.

Last year at the Women’s European Championships held in Leeds, 2 of our Officials were selected to work the event, Susannah Taylor and Alisha Darkins. This was a very proud moment for the Ladies, BAFRA and for American football in Great Britain. A great achievement and reward for all their hard work in their officiating development and support to the sport in general.

Throughout the world there are many activities planned by various sports organizations to mark the day and BAFRA are included. We want to shout about our very own amazing Woman.

This coming Sunday, 8th March, BAFRA have assigned its first all-Female Crew to the BUCS Playoff game between Derby Braves and Newcastle Raiders. The Ladies have been working hard to make this happen and is testament to their determination. I have no doubt they will do a great job.

If you are free why don’t you come along to watch what should be a very competitive game

Location: University of Derby Sports Centre, Kedleston Road, Derby, DE22 1GB

Kickoff is at 1:00pm

The Officiating Crew are as follows:

Referee:                           Alisha Darkins

Umpire:                            Benita Grant-Booker

Head Linesman:                Leanne Spencer

Line Judge:                       Lil Bush

Back Judge:                      Susannah Taylor

Centre Judge:                   Barbara Jacquin

 

Davie Parsons, BAFRA President


Davie Parsons

Celebrated PAC-12 Official Jeff Dahle Returns to Speak at 2020 BAFRA Convention

The BAFRA Board of Directors are delighted to announce that Jeff Dahle will be the Guest of Honour and main speaker at our 2020 Convention and Training Weekend.

View related article here for PDF version or here for Doc Version


BAFRA Webmaster

New BAFRA member Gus Mckechnie appeared on BBC South Today, talking about his football journey, becoming an official and the benefits it brings. You can check out the full report below.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3OVyZ9-byx0

Thank you to Tony Husband for creating this article


Susannah Taylor

Appointments to the board at the Annual General Meeting (AGM) held at Yarnfield Park on Saturday 6th April brought forward new faces and names to the established team.  The BAFRA Board of Directors are pleased to welcome Roger Goodgroves who succeeds Richard Vernon as Director of Operations, and Ollie Maskell who replaces Lee Taylor as Director of Recruitment.  Further details of appointments will be filed in the members section of the website under “meeting minutes - AGM”. These are two key roles in shaping the future of the organisation and delivering on the long-held mission to provide quality officials to the sport of American Football in the UK and overseas.

I caught up with Roger during the week to get his views and plans.

“I am pleased to be given the opportunity to head up the operations team within BAFRA and I will look to make a smooth transition for all officials and teams.  I am very fortunate that the team within operations that I have worked with over the past few seasons have agreed to continue to work with me to achieve this.  I will look to build on the work that Richard Vernon put into the role which gives me a very solid foundation for the growth that's needed as American Football expands in this country."

Ollie Maskell who has a background in recruitment and was an Alan Wilson Award nominee this year, brings fresh ideas and passion for excellence to the board.  I had a chance to get his initial views at the end of the convention.

"I am delighted to have been appointed Director of Recruitment, I know I can bring a new view to the role given my background in in-house recruitment. The next few years will see the British American Football game go from strength to strength under a new BAFA board, and it is important that BAFRA can continue to deliver enough high-quality officials so that the sport can continue being played in a safe manner."

I’m sure you will all join the other members of the Board and wider BAFRA membership in supporting Roger and Ollie in their personal development and delivery of their respective responsibilities to the organisation.

Board of Directors

BAFRA

 


Susannah Taylor

The BAFRA Board of Directors are delighted to welcome Bill LeMonnier again as Guest of Honour and main speaker at our 2019 Convention and Training Weekend – 6th/7th April 2019. For more than a decade BAFRA’s Annual Convention has grown in stature to become one of the best officiating training events in Europe.

Bill Le Monnier

Davie Parsons, BAFRA President said, “We are thrilled that Bill has once again accepted the offer to be our guest and Principle Speaker at the Convention. This will be his fifth visit to our shores and our members are really looking forward to his presentations and insight. Bill has an extensive background in officiating and is a renowned Clinician. He is in constant demand to speak at training events all over the world and we are privileged to have him on-board.”

Following their attendance at the IFAF training clinic in Budapest Bill and Davie are bringing the latest updates and developments to the UK convention.

As well as Officiating in the Big Ten Conference for 20 years, LeMonnier has an impressive list of 20 Bowl assignments and numerous awards to his credit. In 2013 he was awarded the National Association of Sports Officials' Gold Whistle Award which recognises outstanding contributions of sports officials, referees and umpires beyond their officiating duties.  Since 2014 to date Bill has been taking his wealth of knowledge and experience to ESPN/ABC as rules analyst for NCAA football broadcasts. 

The Convention will be held at Yarnfield Park Training & Conference Centre in Yarnfield, Staffordshire over the weekend of 6th and 7th April and places are going fast. Attendance is not restricted solely to BAFRA members as we have Officials attend every year from all over Europe. Information on how to attend the Convention is published in BAFRA’s weekly Newsflash available here.

BAFRA Board of Directors


Susannah Taylor

The BAFRA Board of Directors are delighted to announce that Jeff Dahle will be the Guest of Honour and main speaker at our 2018 Convention and Training Weekend. 


Jeff began his officiating career in 1999 with the Northern Nevada Football Officiating Association. He served as the NNFOA’s president over half of his tenure and was elected twice as crew chief. He worked several high school playoffs including two Nevada state championships in 2004 and 2007.

He started working at the NCAA level in 2004, joining the Northern California junior college association as a Side Judge and Referee where he was assigned three post-season assignments including a state semi-final. He was hired by the Western Athletic Conference (WAC) in 2010 as a Side Judge where he worked for two years and received a post-season assignment in 2011. Jeff then moved to the CFO West in 2012, consisting of the Mountain West and Big 12, for two years and worked a bowl game in 2013. Jeff was hired by the PAC-12 in 2014 and has been assigned a post-season bowl game every season, most recently being the 2018 CFP semi-final Sugar Bowl.

Additionally, Jeff is part of the PAC-12 Referee developmental program. He also participates as an instructor and mentor at several officiating camps and clinics during the off-season.

Over the last 10 years BAFRA’s Annual Convention has grown in stature to become one of the best officiating training events in Europe. Davie Parsons, BAFRA President said, “Once again we are thrilled to welcome a high-profile college official to our Convention. We are looking forward to gaining from Jeff’s 20 years of experiences officiating at the highest level as well as his expertise in delivering quality football clinics and training.”

BAFRA Board of Directors


 


Susannah Taylor

A vacancy has arisen on the BAFRA Rules and Mechanics Committee for an experienced official with good rules and mechanics knowledge. The Committee does most of its work electronically so the time commitment is easy to organise around a personal schedule. Actual face-to- face meetings only take place very occasionally.

For more information on the responsibilities of the role, please contact the Committee Chair, Jim Briggs on rules@britishamericanfootball.org.

Expressions of interest should be emailed to Paul Sutton secretary@bafra.info by 11th November please to allow the Board to make its selection.


Sean Welsh #458

The BUCS season is fast approaching and if you are a game day manager for a team and wanting all the information for your game day then checks out our team pack page 

This page has all the information any team should need regarding game day including Getting BAFRA Officials for your games, BAFA Field Markings and BAFACL playing Rules


Sean Welsh 458

BAFRA are taking advantage of the gap between the end of the 2016 National League season and the start of the 2016/17 BUCS season to update its online presence including the BAFRA website. The plan is for the new website to go live in early October. A further bulletin will be sent out once the changeover is complete. If your team website has a link to BAFRA, please forward this information to your webmaster.

The current site is at www.bafra.org

The new site will be at www.bafra.info

The new website is being tested on multiple platforms, but if you experience any
access problems after the changover, then please send the details to webmaster@bafra.info

All e-mails for BAFRA are changing too - ".org" becomes ".info" so,

operations@bafra.org becomes operations@bafra.info
training@bafra.org   becomes training@bafra.info
etc etc

The new E-mails are already live, so you can change your address book straight away.


Sean Welsh

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LATEST NEWSFLASH #19 1st July 2020
  • BAFRA Elite Panel (BEP) 2020/21