AFL Chief Executive Gillon McLachlan today announced the appointment of Steven Hocking to the AFL Executive as General Manager, Football Operations.
Hocking, 52, will join the AFL in mid-October after the completion of the Geelong Cats 2017 season, where he currently serves as General Manager of Football on the club's executive.
McLachlan said he was delighted that Hocking had accepted the key role to run the elite AFL competition, and his portfolio would also cover the newly-formed AFLW competition, AFL Match Review Panel and Tribunal system, the Laws of the Game, Umpiring at the elite level, key talent pathways and elite coaching development programs.
"The senior AFL competition is our core business and the role of General Manager of Football requires strong leadership, wide experience at the elite level, a proven record of success and the ability to build and maintain relationships across a wide range of key stakeholders,' Mr McLachlan said.
"Steven has been a successful senior off-field leader at the Geelong Cats - a club with a strong sustained record of excellence over the last decade - in addition to a fine career on-field with the Cats.
"His experience at an AFL club will be invaluable to our organisation and his long history within the game is eminently qualified to guide the on-field progress of the AFL, further develop our umpires, harness elite talent into our game and broaden the knowledge base of our next generation of coaches.
"He will continue to serve in his current role at Geelong for their finals campaign before starting at the AFL next month.
"On behalf of the AFL and the wider industry, we are delighted to welcome Steve and congratulate him on his appointment.'
Hocking said he accepted the role yesterday and was both humbled and excited to take on the position.
“I wish to thank the Commission, Gill and the Executive for investing in me and I’m thrilled to be part of the AFL and the broader game," he said.
“I’m looking forward to the role immensely, meeting all the stakeholders and understanding the issues, and then making a contribution around the game.”
Steven Hocking CV
Played 199 games primarily as a defender with Geelong 1984-94, retiring after the 1994 Grand Final. Appeared in two grand finals and was named as the club's most determined player four times, including three consecutive seasons from 1988 to 1990.
2004-05 match committee chairman.
2006 - returned to Geelong full time as Training Services Manager, responsible for the planning, management and implementation of all training services for the club.
2010 - Assistant General Manager Football Operations to support Neil Balme.
2013 - General Manager of Team Performance.
2014 – General Manager of Commercial Operations.
2015 - General Manager of Football.