Atlanta Kookaburras

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Club News

Ryan Downey Elected 2021 Atlanta Kookaburras President

Ryan Downey2020 has been and continues to be an unprecedented year, and footy, like all elements of our public life, has certainly been adversely impacted by the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. Following a late 2020 campaign that saw our club return to limited, in-person practice, host a socially distanced AFL Grand Final party, and closely monitor the broader public health context within our nation as a whole and the USAFL in particular, the Board of Directors convened on November 23, 2020 to hold the Annual General Meeting and elect members for 2021. The AGM provided an opportunity for outgoing President and Life Member, Wayne Kraska, to not only assess the state of the club in 2020, but to look back on his tenure and many of our recent successes. Having spent the better part of two decades in service to the club and the USAFL as a whole, he is now setting his sights on growing his new club, the Rome Redbacks, ( alongside his portfolio of businesses including Play Aussie USA. Wayne also has recently helped generate Footy 5000 ( that will bolster participation in footy and build a more sustainable footprint across the American South and the wider North American footy culture. His legacy will forever remain an integral part of Atlanta Kookaburras culture, and we know that as he looks further afield for his next footy adventure, he will continue to anchor our sporting culture in our neck of the woods.

Looking ahead to 2021, we have a vision for a safe return to footy as the public health context allows, and we have a crop of veteran and new leadership alike to see the Kookaburras into this next phase. Building on his six years as a player for the Kookas and five years as a Board of Directors member, Ryan Downey was elected to serve as President for the upcoming year. In his return to Atlanta from D.C., rising Kookas star Seth Stokes was elected to serve as Secretary, and long-time Kookas player Chris Alexander was elected to serve as Treasurer. Beyond the Executive Committee, many members stepped forward and were elected to serve in at-large Board Member roles, including Ben Tischler, Andrew Schoppe, and another stalwart of the club Jim Batten. Long-time Board Member and 2018 Best & Fairest winner, Braden Medders, joined Wayne Kraska in rolling off of the Board of Directors, earning a well-deserved break after a long tenure serving the club in myriad crucial capacities. As his final act of service in his previous capacity, Braden delivered the Treasurer's Report for 2020, and one thing is clear even against the backdrop of economic uncertainty faced by so many: the state of the Atlanta Kookaburras' financials remains stable, and our effort to invest in a building fund that will see a brighter future for footy in Atlanta and the South continues to gain momentum with the fund growing year-over-year.

While we know there is much that remains unclear about how we can return to some semblance of normalcy in 2021, in all facets of our lives, we also know that the Atlanta Kookaburras will persist and seek to grow our membership in service to our current members, our Life Members who have poured so much into this club, and our Greater Atlanta community. We intend to add additional Board of Directors members for the 2021 year, and we are looking both within and outside of the club for folks who can support our efforts to take this club to the next level and to honor the investment of time and care made by the Life Members who preceded us. 

Atlanta Kookaburras Board of Management.

Kookaburras Return To Practice In 2020

KookasSaints450The Kookaburras return to practice, albeit modified for safety reasons.The Kookaburras are pleased to offer a return to footy activity. Our hope is we can progress safely towards co-ed social footy in the very near future. The first step is to get out there on the track, have a kick, get some run in our legs and have some fun.

11.00am each week, contact us for the location as it may change week to week. Bring your own ball or we will supply one, bring your own water etc. Bring some legs and a mask.

Contact Head Coach Linley Laverdure if you would like to join us. This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Kookaburras Covid-19 Statement - Updated

The safety of our players, members and their families is extremely important to us. With that in mind the Atlanta Kookaburras Board of Management has postponed all club activities till further notice. The Kookaburras Board will be monitoring events and will be evaluating future training, AFLS and club matches in accordance with advisories by the CDC, WHO and our parent body, the USAFL

Our community and friends of the Kookaburras including our sponsors, may need our support in the very near future, we will endeavor to relay to you what that help means and what you could possibly assist with, when we have further details to give.

For now, if you are feeling ill or showing any possible symptoms please self isolate. If you may have been exposed to COVID-19 please do not attend places where you may be in contact with others.

If you have immune system compromised friends and family you routinely interact with, consider self isolating immediately. While you may be at low risk due to the virus, those around you may not be. Please consider your family and community when making your decisions.

We will continue to update you as best we can. Be smart and please be safe, not only for yourself but for those around you.

The USAFL has made this statement regarding COVID-19:

Wayne Kraska
Atlanta Kookaburras Australian Rules Football Club

Ryan Downey Wins Second MVP Award

VoteNightWinners2The Kookaburras Captain Ryan Downey capped off a great season winning his second Best & Fairest Award recently. The MVP and Mike Powers Medal recipient did so despite breaking his hand 4 weeks before the USAFL National Championships. Downey did play at the USAFL Nationals in Florida with the hand heavily padded, a true sign of his commitment to the game, his club and his teammates, however during the regular season he was able to accumulate 76 votes too hold off the fast finishing Seth Stokes with 68 votes, who took the runners-up trophy and Best 1st Year Player Award.

The Kookaburras celebrated the end of the 2019 season with a full count of the MVP voting meticulously organized as always by Life Member and club statistician Jim Batten, with other awards going to Will McDonald for Best Clubman, Kyler Johnson for Most Improved & Coaches Award. Jeff Whitlock received the Goal Umpire Appreciation award for continued efforts during the year despite not being able to play and Andrew Schoppe was awarded Top Volunteer.

Chase Trujillo who also tied for 3rd in the MVP voting with Braden Medders on 48 votes, picked up the Best at Nationals Award with some great games in Sarasota.

Leading goalkicker for the year was Tom Gultom who slotted through 33 goals from his 8 games.

The Kookaburras Annual General Meeting was also held on the night with Wayne Kraska re-elected as returning President, Ryan Downey moving into the Secretary's role and Braden Medders taking up the Treasurer position. We welcome new on the Board this year long time supporter of Aussie Rules football in Atlanta Sandy Lawrence, elected as VP and Jim Batten retained a Member at Large role. The Kookaburras continue to look for interested people in getting involved in the promotion or organization of Australian Rules Football in Atlanta. Contact us if you can help or know someone with some resources to help.

See the full MVP voting tallies here.

Linley Laverdure Appointed Head Coach For 2020

Linley2020bThe Atlanta Kookaburras are pleased to announce Linley Laverdure as the new Head Coach of the club. Linley has been with the club since 2014 and has been a solid contributor on and off the field, with his ability to kick a few goals when needed and shore up the backline in times of crisis. Linley brags, and rightly so, as being the longest kick we have had at the club for a long while. He can roost it, as they say in the classics, and big 'barrels' are a favorite of his.

Linley first came to the US for a college scholarship playing soccer for South Georgia College then later transferring to the Georgia Southwestern State University.

Official Kookaburras practice commences February 29th and players can look forward to Linley's goal he wanted to convey.  "To drive every player to reach their best in 2020, both physically and skillfully for the game of Aussie Rules and continue to improve the Kookaburra's on field performances and competitiveness".

An avid Hawthorn Hawks supporter we wish Linley well in his new role as Head Coach of the Kookaburras in 2020.

Chef Cordel Catering - Premier Sponsor For 2020

chefcordel optThe Atlanta Kookaburras welcome greatly a brand new Premier Sponsor for 2020. Chef Cordel Catering of Atlanta owned by Miguel Harris has become our current third Premier Sponsor for the 2020 season. Chef Cordel Catering specializes in small to large event catering for weddings, corporate events and special occasions and since the Atlanta Kookaburras have utilized their services already, we can highly recommend them for quality, service and affordability.

You can check out their menus and other information on their website at

They also have a DJ Entertainment service they can include in their event catering services. Please visit their website, remember to refer them when you hear of a catering opportunity, or use them yourself. You will not regret that decision.

Kookaburra's New Women's Team Go Help Out, But Get Scorched

Atlanta Kookaburras Women 2019Decked out with new guernseys generously funded by donations from our major sponsor, Sandy Lawrence at Dorsey Alston Realtors, the new women of the Atlanta Kookaburras traveled to Nashville on May 4th to join forces with the Chicago Swans to face down an experienced Nashville side. Shortly before game time and exercising their powers as Hosts, Nashville secured the experienced Swans players to their side, and our intrepid newcomers to the sport faced their first trial by fire.
The combined Nashville-Chicago team started the game high-scoring and did not relent. Backline players Shaunna Chamlee (playing her first ever game) and Megan Hils worked tirelessly to keep them at bay. Gin Nugent (first game) and Kelsey Teets (first game) made superb efforts in the forward line with Kelsey pulling down multiple contested marks. But the clear standout of all players on the ground (Nash-Chi included) was our own Madison Longchamp (first game). Standing at a gargantuan 5 ft 2 inches, Madison dominated the center of the ground all game. Only skilled, experienced kicks away from her could reduce her thundering effectiveness.
Goal Kickers: Madison Longchamp 1, Kelsey Teets 1
The score did not turn out in favor of the Kookaburras, but Madison, Kelsey, Shaunna, Megan and Gin improved tremendously quarter after quarter. There is much to work with, and they'll get better. The coaches expect to see a big improvement when they turn out for the Eastern Regionals in Raleigh, NC on June 15th.
Many thanks to the supporters, especially club luminary Sandy Lawrence, who made the trek to Nashville to cheer on our burgeoning women’s team. A thank-you also goes out to the members of our men’s team who made the drive to serve as coach’s and water runners. Sponsors, supporters and volunteers are an integral part of our club’s success.

Where We Play

2020 Playing at NH Scott Park

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