Honours to the hockey family just keep coming, with Australia’s Rosemary Stern the latest to receive an award for her services to the sport.
Rosemary – known in hockey circles as Rosie – has had a long and distinguished career as an international hockey official and administrator. Her professionalism and service to the sport has been recognised by the Australian government, who recently made Rosie a Member (AM) in the General Division of the Order of Australia.
While her international career spans 15 years, Rosie actually began officiating in 1968 and her curriculum vitae includes local under-age competitors and Masters events as well as competitions on the world’s largest stage – the Olympics, a trio of Hockey World Cups and the Commonwealth Games.
Rosie’s international experience began as judge at an Olympic Qualifier in New Zealand in 2004, and subsequent appointments took her all over the world. Events have included, Tournament Director at Hockey Champions Trophy (2007), Hockey Junior World Cup (2009), Commonwealth Games (2010), Olympic Qualifiers (2012) and Hockey World League Final (2014). She was also a Technical Official / Judge at three Hockey World Cups (2002, 2006, 2014) and the Assistant Technical Director at the 2008 Olympic Games in Beijing. She bowed out of tier one international events at the 2014 Hockey World Cup in the Hague.
Among her many honours, Rosie was named Hockey Australia Official of the Year in 2009, was a finalist in the Sport South Australia Official of the Year in 2010 and received an Order of Merit from the South Australian Olympic Council in 2014.
Hockey Australia General Manager, Ben Hartung, said, "Rosie has unquestionably been the leading female Tournament Director in Australia and in the top eight female tournament officials worldwide.” And, he added, “As one of the world's leading tournament officials, Rosie has been extremely generous with her knowledge, time and experience to train and mentor a significant number of tournament officials across Australia. She is recognised as one of the most experienced officials in the Oceania region.”
Rosie retired from hockey officiating in 2015, with her last event the XV Australian Masters Games, held at the South Australia State Hockey Centre.
International Hockey Federation (FIH) President, Dr Narinder Dhruv Batra said: “It is individuals such as Rosie who make hockey the successful sport it is today. While the athletes provide the skill, speed and excitement that draws in the fans, it is the often overlooked professionalism and dedication of the officials that allow our events to run smoothly and safely.
“I am delighted that Rosie has been honoured in this way. It is yet another sign that hockey is being recognised and appreciated by a far wider audience as a sport that is leading the way in participation and professionalism, a key component of our 10-year Hockey Revolution strategy.”