Donna Milne: You can overcome everything
Women in Sport Murihiku board member Donna Milne has played a major role in the resurgence of Southland volleyball.
Tell us about yourself. Who are you, where are you from and what do you do?
I am a Customer Relationship Manager for Focus Technology and a wife of Kris, a NZ age group triathlete and mother of two daughters - Kloe (21) studying in Wellington, and Courtney (19) studying in Dunedin.
I am a volunteer national board member of Volleyball NZ, South Island Zone board member (Volleyball), Regional board member of Volleyball Southland (Chair), Women in Sport Murihiku board member (Treasurer) and I am involved with other Southland community groups where and when possible.
What are you passionate about ?
To be a strong role model for my daughters and other women. To learn and grow every day from my mistakes, challenges and life experiences.Ensuring all Southlanders, from all walks of life have opportunities to better themselves.
Name a person who has had a significant impact on your life? Why were they so important?
My late Auntie Elaine who always said “You can overcome everything and do anything you put your mind, passion and energy into Donna.”
What is your earliest sporting memory?
Playing hockey for Southland and breaking my ankle in Picton on tournament at 13 years old, and breaking the high jump record in Southland athletics.
What is your favourite sporting memory?
Having NZ’s best beach volleyball players competing in the SIT Velodrome in our purpose-built beach volleyball pit and watching the men earn bronze at the 2018 Commonwealth Games in beach volleyball’s first ever inclusion in the games.
Why is sport important to you?
All my life, sport has brought me joy. When I was young, having friends and fun right through to when I was living overseas and meeting new friends through sport. I love giving back now, and seeing how sport can turn peoples’ lives around.
Has there been any other moment when sport has played a major part in your life?
For me I was really honoured to be appointed a board member for Volleyball NZ. Super proud of our daughters both being selected for NZ ISA softball teams and my husband representing NZ in age group world championships in Mexico (2016), Rotterdam (2017) and Gold Coast (2018) over the past three years.
Why is it important that women and girls are valued, visible and influential in sport?
It is 2018, and we need to help influence the creation of a New Zealand culture of inclusion, fairness and being valued that is universally accepted for females.
How will the Women in Sport Murihiku network know when it has been successful?
There will be measurable and unmeasurable outcomes. I believe we will grow and become a solid foundation for women in Southland to turn to, have a voice, be the voice, lead and support.