David Robinson (March 2006)David Robinson joined the club in the Spring of 1999, to manage a then new Under 9 Mini Soccer team in the start-up of the Stourbridge and District Mini Soccer league. In the seven years of his association with Kewford Eagles FC, the club has gone through possibly the biggest transformation in its 28-year history - and a large part of that huge change has been down to David and his unique contributions.
Early on, it was Dave's enthusiasm for coaching, to introduce quality in this area into his team and into the club, which grabbed the attention of the existing committee. With a degree of solid experience of how professional academy coaching works, he became an outspoken advocate of changing the way football is coached within the club, and this approach was gradually picked up by others.
Debates within meetings during Dave's early years in the club were lively, robust and "entertaining" as the new intake of team managers, brought in by the demands of mini soccer, started to put forward a number of ideas, which were the start of an overall transformation process. Dave was one of those people, initially outside the club governing body, who you just knew would have to be involved in a greater official capacity at some point, as his ideas and different approaches to tackling problems gained ground and favour in the body of the club meetings. It was Dave's often sideways view of issues, and his talent for putting forward solutions to problems, which perhaps hadn't been thought of, that often made a big difference to how we viewed the future and its possibilities. This ability to think "outside the box" has been a thread throughout his time with Kewford.
Two major contributions can be attributed to Dave's thinking and ability to get things done.
In 2001, the club was left with a major gap in its committee roles - we didn't have a Treasurer. Dave stepped into the breach through a sense of duty to the club. In a relatively short space of time we had agreed in committee to completely revamp the way the club operated its finances. With David overseeing the process, we were able to turn the whole thing around so that the club itself was no longer a poor relation to cash-rich teams, often almost begging teams to pay a little extra so that we could cut the grass at the Scout Ground! Since the move to central funding, which Dave ensured went through without any significant problems, the club is now able to provide quality and equality throughout in terms of kit, equipment, grounds, goalposts, coach and player insurance, qualified coaches, training facilities, and much more. We can now cut the grass and mark the lines at the Scout Field without worrying if it sends us into the red! Dave made sure we got into this position.
When the club heard that girls and ladies football was starting to take off in the West Midlands, Dave, who has a talented footballer in his eldest son Zach, was able to bring his daughter Jess into the Robinson football-playing fraternity by agreeing to oversee and implement a full Girls football section within the club. With Jess now playing for Kewford Under 14 Girls and perhaps looking to go further into the Under 16's, Dave has managed to steer the club through to a very successful implementation of girls football. With team managers and coaches looking after girls teams at Under 8, Under 10, Under 12 and Under 14, and a plan to take this forward next year to Under 16's and perhaps Ladies senior football beyond that, the club is now in a very strong position to go forward in this relatively new and exciting venture.
As a Director of his own business, its again amazing that he can find sufficient time to do "other stuff" - but he does. As with Richard and Delyth Molland, Dave and Cassie Robinson enjoy a varied social life with a large group of friends. There is often a lot of singing and music within the Robinson household as Cassie gets very involved in organising charitable events and "Stars in their Eyes" fund-raisers. The youngest Robinson, "EJ", is one of the best drummers of his age that you could hear - we await his appearance on the stage for a big rock group in the near future! Jess has sung on stage, as has Cassie, and Dave does a very neat impression of Frank Sinatra without too much persuasion! So . . Kewford doesn't have to take up every waking moment - there is life outside, and in this case a pretty lively and hectic social life.
Thanks for all the ideas and input David. As Frank might say - "You did it your way"! Keep it going!