Indigenous elder and renowned WA artist Richard Walley has been appointed Fremantle Dockers Number 1 Ticketholder for the 2016 season.
Walley follows Victoria Cross recipient Corporal Ben Roberts-Smith, who held the position from 2012 to 2015.
An artist in every sense of the word, Walley has established himself as a writer, director, dancer, musician, painter, and teacher of Nyoongar culture.
Walley has a strong connection to the Fremantle Dockers, having designed the club’s inaugural indigenous guernsey and has also been a key contributor in delivering actions such as ceremonies and welcome to country messages as part of Fremantle’s Reconciliation Action Plan.
Walley said he was privileged to not only accept the honour on behalf of himself, but the Nyoongar people as well.
“It’s an honour for me to be in this position,” Walley said.
“But nothing happens to an individual, it happens as a collective, and you become part of a team, just like Fremantle” Walley said.
Walley also said he was excited to be a part of football’s ability to bring people together.
“Football has no age and no barriers,” he said.
“Fremantle over the years have had people from all ages, all backgrounds, and have been very inclusive and innovative, and to be a part of that is very exciting.”
Fremantle Dockers CEO Steve Rosich was thrilled to welcome Walley as Freo’s number one ticket holder, citing his long-standing relationship with the club and positive impact on the WA community.
“Richard’s been a long time supporter of the Fremantle Dockers and has been involved with the club in many ways, including designing our indigenous jumper and playing a lead role in our indigenous round each and every year,” Rosich said.
“He’s made a significant contribution to the WA community."