Mark Cosham is a Life Member and Past President of the Waverley Little Athletics Centre Inc. He was the 29th Centre President, taking over from Dylan Cooper during the 2015/16 season. Mark has been involved at the Centre for 13 years, was a member of the Committee for 9 years and is one of the longest serving volunteers in our history.
29th Centre President
30th July 2015 - 25th March 2017
|Vice President||John Shone|
|Preceded by||Dylan Cooper|
|Succeeded by||Dylan Cooper|
Waverley Little Athletics Centre Inc.
Mark and his family joined the Waverley Little Athletics Centre Inc. for the 2004/05 season, with two oldest children Jeremy and Susannah participating in the U9 and U6 age groups. Mark had little involvement at the Centre until he was elected to the 2008/09 Committee, as he stayed home to look after his two youngest children while his wife Kathy and oldest children attended Little Athletics. However, Mark is seen in some nostalgic photos watching his children and taking some photos!
During his time on the Committee, Mark made significant changes to the way the Centre operates, both on and off the field. His areas of interest are websites, result systems and making things easier for Committees to run Centres. Mark quickly became a senior member of the Committee and the administrative support he provided was invaluable, always sharing his knowledge on the various issues faced with running the Centre. Mark is an IT Software Developer, therefore he brought a wealth of knowledge to the table and implemented many innovative changes to our Results & Recording Database and website. He continues to maintain the WLAC website and email servers.
Mark was elected onto the Committee as Computer Manager in 2008/09, to alleviate the responsibilities from Matt Sturgess, who took over as President. This position was renamed to Website and Results Manager in 2014/15. He was also Vice President from 2012/15 (resigned September 2014) and President from July 2015 until the end of the 2016/17 season. Mark served on the committee for 9 years. At the time of his resignation from the Committee, he was the longest current serving Committee Member and the equal second longest serving Committee Member in our history.
Computer Manager / Website and Results Manager
Mark took over as Computer Manager in 2008/09 and started picking up some of the slack, the jobs no one else wanted to do. These jobs were; producing envelope labels for postage, generating emailing lists and sending bulk emails to members, looking after the Centres printing needs (registration forms, letters, medical lists etc), streamlining duty recording through data from NARS, finalized artwork for the 40th Anniversary Open Day drink bottles and more. Mark took over the responsibility of organising the Waverley Games Day recording spread sheets, printing Committee Name Tags, and arranging the end of season Key Officials and Athletes Certificates. In September 2008, Mark started looking into upgrading the existing website to make it easier to maintain and post future updates. In November 2008, Mark indicated that he would like to officially take over the Website Manager position, later absorbing it into the Computer Manager role. After Christmas, Mark provided a visual presentation of the new website with new web hosting through Quadra, which was a better deal for what the Centre already had access to. Mark added more calendar and Open Day dates to the website, built a new Committee only section of the website to house Committee documents and meeting minutes, which required a user name and password to gain access. He also gained access to the online credit card payment system, Register Now, and improved the payment process for Registration Days. Due to Mark's hard work, the website upgrade at this time served the Centre until December 2013.
Extract from AGM Minutes, Matt Sturgess – President 2008/09
We moved our website onto a new platform after the Christmas break. Our Computer Manager, Mark Cosham, did his research and has set WLAC up in an environment that should serve us well for a number of years. It is a huge improvement on the cumbersome site we had, and has enabled us to post news and photos in a much more timely manner. He also ensured that we have sufficient space that will allow us to keep much more in the way of pictures and information on the site.
During the 2009/10 season, Mark was an important member of the Standards Review Sub-Committee, responsible for looking over 10 years’ worth of results data and determining whether the Centre’s result standards needed updating. A full overhaul was done of the standards thanks to the work from this sub-committee. Mark spent a bit of time investigating the use of PayPal for online credit card payments for registration days, as the Register Now system had been upgraded and became too troublesome to use. Register Now was deemed the system to use and Mark integrated the credit card payment into the printing of receipts. Peter Ziguras (Treasurer 2008/10) and Mark were responsible for sourcing a magnetic credit card reader, which they purchased, and Mark integrated with the registration process systems. In terms of the website, many more updates were developed, including; allowing Committee Members to have "author only" access, to spread the workload and allow them to publish articles to the website, updating the season calendar dates, providing updates of website statistics, creation of the Open Day registration page and using those ideas to improve the Centre’s registrations page, monitoring the website logs and upgrading security protocols due to unwanted hackings. Mark also printed the WLAC newsletter for the notice boards, updated and printed recording information sheets for the event managers recording folders. Mark also loaned us his deep freezer to trial freezing our stock, which the Centre later purchased from him.
Extract from AGM Minutes, Tammy Stephens – President 2009/10
At Waverley we are quite lucky to have many outstanding individuals. One of these people is our computer manager, Mark. Mark’s drive and passion to help develop the centre into one of the best in the state, is second to none. Over the years I have seen a transformation of the website, adding a “committee only” section, photo gallery, and a new Online Open Day Registration page. It is now much easier to make changes to the events, calendar, sponsors and other information.
Other areas Mark has been involved in are:
- Incorporating a magnetic card reader on the system and has worked very well to improve the speed of the registration process.
- Streamline clubsonline process for the registrar. Making it easier to be make a member financial.
- He was also a key member in the standard sub-committee. Without his expertise we would still be looking at it.
Mark has also set himself some future goals to help streamline the centre’s operation and I hope he understands how much we appreciated him.
In his third year on the Committee, Mark continued to streamline the maintenance of the website and the management of registration details, by reducing the amount of time involved to hand type every manual registration form into NARS and also into Clubs Online. Mark wrote a small but effective program call "Clubsonline to NARS", which downloaded an extract of registration details from COL and uploaded them into NARS. This saved future Registrars from having to take a week off from work to type all the information into two systems. Upgrades to the website consisted of updating accessibility and receiving an increase in disk space from the host server. Our website was set up so well that the Cranbourne Little Athletics Centre sent through a request asking for details on how and where we host our website. Mark also added information into NARS about our sponsors so they would receive our emails. U16’s were introduced at Centre Level, so Mark needed to include the standards for results and points purposes. The decision was made to adjust standards accordingly and set U16 records at U15 gold standards, all of which Mark completed. For most of the season, Mark took the pressure off the President by taking the minutes of Committee Meetings, as he always had his laptop at meeting to provide some statistics from NARS or show us the developments on the website. Toward the end of this season, Mark started to think about electronic recording at events out on the field.
Extract from AGM Minutes, Tammy Stephens – President 2010/11
Mark Computer Manager minute taker is always thinking of the future and how we can streamline operations better. Thanks Mark for being practical, always helping and listening to me so much this year.
Extract from AGM Minutes, Darren Stephens – Registrar 2010/11
This season saw Waverley use the LAVic clubsonline registration system properly for the first time. This allowed extra information to be recorded such as payment of the duty levy and permission for usage of photo’s as reducing the time taken to do reconciliations. Special thanks to our computer Manager, Mark Cosham. Mark created an application that allowed transfer of data from the clubs online database into NARS, preventing the hours of data entry involved with the previous approach.
Electronic recording software was one of Marks major focuses for the 2011/12 season, along with ensuring that the Registration systems were functioning correctly. Further improvements were made to the COL to NARS program that ensured the Registrars job and manual workload was kept to a minimum. Mark started looking at developing recording software for use with iPad/tablet hardware. He also approached Officeworks Glen Waverley to see if they can sponsor the Centre and donate a tablet for development trials, which was successful. The software for electronic recording was progressively thought of and trialled, but was not implemented during this season. Further thinking on the larger scale had to be done. With the name of our Centre being changed to Little Athletics Waverley, Mark updated the information on our website including the logo image.
Extract from AGM Minutes, Kate Sanford – Registrar 2011/12
I have by no means completed my role as Registrar single handily and would like to especially acknowledge the assistance of Mark Cosham who has been instrumental in ensuring the process operates smoothly. I would also like to thank the committee in helping at the registration desk on competition days during busy times, especially Adrian Bugeja. I would also like to thank Ellie Sanford for volunteering to write out the majority of the registration patches at the beginning of the season.
LAVic released information in May 2012 about a new timing/results system called Timing Solutions, who were introduced at the 2012 conference as the preferred timing system for Little Athletics. This new development kept Mark busy for the 2012/13 season, along with his duties as Vice President of the Centre. Mark put his electronic recording software on hold and started to review the Timing Solutions software. At the June Committee Meeting, Mark provided the Committee with an update on where Timing Solutions was currently at. It looked like a great system compared to NARS, but Mark needed to further investigate. He attended the forum at the LAVic Minifest, determining that Timing Solutions would not be ready or suitable enough for us to use as our primary registration or results system, but it could be trialled in parallel to NARS. He did some thorough investigations on the new system and came to the conclusion by September that the software would not interface with our timing gates and we would stick to using NARS. Soon after the season began, some Centres who purchased the software and hardware mentioned there were some teething issues, proving a good choice to stick to the system that was working for us. Mark reconsidered the electronic recording software and decided to write an application for electronic long distance timing. There were no tablet hardware purchases this season due to the increased research into Timing Solutions and the options available to us. After Christmas, Mark started to test importing results into ResultsHQ, Timing Solutions recording system, to enable families the opportunity to log in and utilise the presentation of results and graphs. He spent countless hours conferring with LAVic and Timing Solutions about the issues and possible improvements with their software. All of these discussions were included in the 2012/13 Annual Report, for future referencing.
This season all registrations were done online, eliminating manual paperwork. Mark purchased 3 new Laptops for the Centre including 3G WIFI access, to enable the Registrar and Administration team to use these computers on Registration Days and during the competition days, which significantly streamlined the registration process by allowing parents to complete the online registrations at Central Reserve in a timely manner. It also meant that athlete’s details are in the system and results can be input straight away.
As the name of our Centre was changed to Little Athletics Waverley, Mark updated the website and email domains accordingly to www.littleathleticswaverley.org.
Extract from Annual Report, Dylan Cooper – President 2012/13
Mark Cosham – Vice President & Computer Manager is currently the longest serving Committee Member, this season being his fifth. He brings a wealth of knowledge from his work-life (I.T & Computers) and has been working very hard both last and this season to implement a fully wireless timing and recording systems. This has been a hard task to implement as the LAVic/Timing Solutions has many “holes” to fill before it could be used at Waverley. Mark has been “helping” Timing Solutions – providing them the necessary feedback from a Centres point of view and what we would expect/need. This season Mark has taken a step up and became our Vice President. He’s been a great help to me always providing guidance when needed. Having served on the past 5 committees, Mark has seen many changes and knows exactly what is best for our Centre. Along with his wife Kathy, they both manage the Results. This includes updating NARS, Printing recording sheets, preparing folders, printing programs, setting up races in NBS (NARS Barcode System) which is used on the track, then inputting the results after the competitions. Updating IMG (Online Registrations) and maintaining our website are part of Marks Computer duties. On Saturdays Mark would manage the Administration table along with Marie and be a general all round helper – doing anything needed! Thank you Mark for your help this season and your dedication to Waverley!
Extract from Annual Report, Marie Valle – Registrar 2012/13
The introduction of computers on event days by Mark Cosham has seen new C&Ts, registrations and queries dealt with in a highly efficient manner, substantially reducing the administration and waiting time for all involved. Special thanks to Mark Cosham, Adrian Bugeja and Joanne Paola for the ongoing support to Registrar duties throughout the season.
2013/14 saw the Centre name being changed back to Waverley Little Athletics Centre. Mark purchased and updated the new domain into (www.wlac34.org) and made some significant upgrades to the website hosting.
Mark continued his work on the electronic recording system into the 2013/14 season, which eventually saw the system become much more than just electronic recording at events. Mark began looking to move the website domain to a new host with better features at the same price, which was his long term goal for the Centre. At the conclusion of the 2012/13 season, Mark started to write/code the new Results Database System from scratch. He continued through the winter months, making significant progress to enable us to introduce a new system compatible with IMG, allowing us to stop using the NARS system for recording purposes. In June 2013, Mark gave the Committee a detailed visual presentation of the new Results Database, showing us that the system is fully operational for entering results data at the conclusion of the weekly programs. The system comprises a combination of what ResultsHQ offered along with NARS. Both systems on their own did not do enough of what we required. The new system was also able to be used on mobile and tablet devices as its web based. Once the initial database was written, it included; preparation of programs that automatically created the programs online, ready to print and automatically set up recording sheets for printing, importing from IMG which enabled the system to be updated with one simple upload, statistical reporting on athletes registrations, results entry system (although electronic recording was not completed this season), live Results once the results are in the system, log in portal for parents and athletes to monitor results and PB’s, PB Lists, results archives and much more. Through this system, the database automatically calculated end of season reports for points and trophies in a matter of seconds, eliminating the manual work required to organise trophies. A custom built email server was integrated into the database which allows Mark to create and easily maintain email addresses with every IMG upload. Other reports also include tracking and monitoring things such as Working with Children’s Check details. The database also included the functionality to maintain the honour boards, contact details etc., integrating the honour board details with the website. The athletes section of the database allowed for Come and Try registrations to be put into the system straight away so athlete’s results could be immediately recorded, particularly for electronic recording.
Mark set up the IMG ONLINE SHOP, which would enable us to sell uniforms online and allow families pay for these as part of their registration via credit card, to further eliminate manual cash handling. However, this did not eventuate.
The Waverley Open Day was reintroduced in 2013 after a two year break. Mark spent numerous hours developing a special section of the Results database especially for recording the Open Day results. Significant functions were written into the system that allowed us to create the Open Day program, print the recording sheets, upload the online registration files (from IMG), listing athletes by event, listing events and allocating event numbers, creating a list of athletes with clashing of events, displaying an event matrix which summarised the number of registrations per age group per event, the results export and allocating lane orders. The development of the Lane order allocations and lists of finals/results had to comply with the LAVic and IAAF rules and regulations, such as the rule for 1st place in each heat qualifies for the final then the next fastest times overall. Software had to be written to convert heats into straight finals where required, to automatically count back results in the event of ties and to allow equal placing’s if required. All of this software was written in a short period of time which allowed us to move away from using the old excel spread sheets, which enabled more than one person to help with results input as the database is fully web based. Results were input within a matter of minutes, results went up on the website "live" and finals listings were printed and displayed on the noticeboards and sent to presentations within minutes.
Extract from December Committee Minutes, Dylan Cooper – President 2013/14
Dylan thanked Mark for all work put into website and result system, for Open Day. Countless hours and emails getting it ready. Mark has replaced the entire system that LAVic uses. We had a few bugs on the day but it was all fixed, presentations were done within 5 minutes of paperwork coming in and we had live results. Mark said there are a few bits left to write such as the end of year certificates. Additional things Mark did to make results for Open Day suitable were: Heats, finals, straight finals, placing’s based on LAVic regs, end of competitions result export and certificate export. Everyone thanked Mark.
Once again, Mark upgraded the Waverley website in December, to the latest version of Jamoola (website platform), which provided better security features and enabled users who accessed the website from a mobile phone much better functionality, shrinking down the menus and pages to mobile phone size. Team App was also created for Waverley, another form of communication to members; however this is not integrated into the website so has to be manually updated.
No further progress was made on Electronic Recording at field events for the remainder of the season; a few more features were needed to be able to manually record a result for athletes that aren’t listed in the system.
Money was once again set aside for the purchase of tablet hardware but further developments were still required before we go ahead with any purchases of equipment. Further software was planned to be written during the off-season ahead.
Extract Annual Report 2013/14, Dylan Cooper – President 2013/14
Mark Cosham – our Vice President & Computer Manager – 6th season on the Committee and always providing senior administrative support and guidance. This has been the busiest 12 months for Mark, developing the new WLAC Results database, which is much more than just “results”, it’s the core database for all of the Centre’s needs. This is a huge massive project that Mark has completed for the Waverley Centre in his evenings and on the weekends. Hundreds of emails back and forth have meant that bits and pieces have been included along the way, always improving it. It also has the functionality for parents to log in and view their children’s results and compare week to week. The software was written starting end of last season and recent developments implemented from October meant we could use it fully for the Open Day. Other developments have included the Honour Boards and website information. Mark upgraded to the current website software and is now in the process of re-writing the entire website, developing it (similarly) from scratch. In addition to this big project, Mark worked on our Incorporation “stuff” and worked in with the LAVic SubCommittee developing information for the 103 Centres in Victoria. Each week Mark also prints the recording sheets, sets up the barcoding Computer, charges the timing boxes, assists the Registrar on comp days (or fills when required) and has helped me with Treasuries duties on comp days. Mark is well supported by his wife Kathy, Results Input Manager for the last 5 years, they work tremendously together. My sincere thanks to you, Mark & Kathy
By April 2014, Mark had launched the new, custom built Waverley website, which he fully controlled and hosted through the Results Database. Lots of time had been spent on the layout of the Result Database and Website. Initially the database was plain and the focus was on its functionality. As the website was further developed, other features built into the website included; athletes and volunteers profiles, such as Life Members and Past Presidents, a section for athlete awards, calendar of events, improved security, RSS feed to copy news articles on to Facebook and the ability to track documents and expiry dates. Both sites have been set up to work on mobile phones and tablet devices, with the screens shrinking down to a usable size.
Once the database and website had been running for some time, Mark implemented further updates. He trialled various different layouts, including a checked background and plain black. In the latest developments, Mark had; set up the website to randomly select and display a background photo and a photo in the top corner of the website, selected from one of the various photo albums, except for when the website is used on a mobile device (to save the users data usage), automatic calendar dates to appear and delete itself upon expiry, improved security with email blocking, lists of people requiring Working with Children’s Checks and expiry dates, list of sponsors and their images on home screen that rotates, link to LAVic twitter, limiting and shuffling of menu items, now drop boxes, splitting calendar events into categories and more!
Mark proposed the Centre purchase a brand new Timing Box system from KC Kew Electronics in Tasmania, to enable us the option to time 8 lane circular track events, especially on the Open Day. This equipment was a significant cost to the Centre, but an upgrade of an asset that was desperately required.
Progression was made to introduce electronic recording at field events, but the system was not implemented. Mark also competed writing a replacement program for NBS, which uses the same functions as the NBS system, but is fully integrated with the Results Database to further streamline the process in which results are loaded in to the system. This system is used on competition days and highlights important information such an athlete’s personal bests and if a record is broken. The system also has a failsafe, it can be used manually if any of the technology fails (such as Bluetooth or barcode scanning devices) without stopping the program and falling behind.
Mark created an online Come and Try registration form through the Results Database, which significantly reduced the workload on the Registrar, cutting out all forms of manual registration work involved for the role.
Insert information from 2015/16 as Website and Results Manager.
Mark stepped up in 2012/13 and took on the responsibilities of Vice President, to support Dylan Cooper, who took over the role of President at 19 years of age. This was a huge step in the history of the Centre, having someone so young take on this responsibility, so Mark, the most senior Committee Member, showed his commitment and support to the Centre by taking on this dual role. As Computer Manager, Mark was already part of the Administration team, so taking on Vice President further strengthened this team work as he would assist the Registrar and Treasurer each week. He also took on the responsibility as one of three bank signatories, as he would often help count the money at the end of each week. Mark ensured that the Centre had good governance and followed the Deed of Operations and LAVic Regulations correctly. He also represented Waverley the LAVic AGM in 2012.
The LAVic BOM make a decision in 2013/14 that Centres would need to become incorporated to protect Centres, Committees Members and families. As well as ensuring the Centre ran smoothly, this kept Mark fairly busy further investigating the requirements involved to complete the process. Mark attended the discussion meeting held by LAVic and provided lots of detailed feedback to the Committee in April 2013. He joined the LAVic Incorporation Sub-Committee as part of the Business Assurance portfolio, to help the LAVic Directors prepare information suitable for distribution to the Centres to further assist Centres in becoming incorporated. Mark represented Waverley at the 2013 Centrefest and AGM where vital information was released on good governance of the Centre and incorporation, all of which Mark fed back to the Centre Committee.
The season saw a number of early resignations from Committee Members, which significantly impacted the running of the Centre. Luckily we were fortunate enough to find a new Registrar within a number of weeks. Mark spent a number of hours teaching her the computer systems and process of Registrations. During the season, Mark would always assist the Registrar on competition days, often running the Administration on his own in the absence of the Registrar and Treasurer. He would take registrations, payments and sell uniforms. In addition to running the registrations, the Treasurer was unavailable to attend most competition weekends, which meant the duties fell onto the President. Thankfully, Mark assisted in the Treasury duties on a weekly basis, staying behind after the program to count the money to ensure correct protocol is followed. Mark also chaired Committee Meetings when required, as part of his Vice President role.
Incorporation was an important part of Marks role as our Vice President. He spent countless hours preparing information for the Committee and Members, set the date for the Special General Meeting to cast the vote to incorporate and set up the SGM and motions required. Unfortunately, the first meeting didn’t go ahead as planned, so Mark had to do it all again in preparation for a February meeting. Mark and Dylan spent a number of hours going through and reviewing the proposed Constitution to present to members to vote on.
Extract from Annual Report, Adrian Bugeja – Treasurer 2013/14
After 2 years as Treasurer, I won’t be re–nominating due to other commitments. I wish the next Treasurer all the best.
Finally, I’d like to thank Dylan & Mark for looking after the Finance duties on a Saturday & Thursday when I’m unavailable to attend.
Extract from Annual Report, Cathy Haung – Registrar 2013/14
Big thanks to Mark, the Vice President and Computer Manager who managed and improved the computer system, showed me how to use it and has been a great help to me, always providing guidance when needed. With the computer system, it became easier, more secure and less fault for the registration process.
Mark agreed to take on the Vice President role again for the 2014/15, indicating that he will resign if someone else wanted to take over or once the final step of incorporation was complete and the Centre became fully incorporated. Mark resigned from the position in September 2014. He stated that he had no desire to succeed to President, his work in this vital role was complete and he stepped down from this position satisfied that the Executive is in a stable position. He remained on the Committee as Website and Results Manager, concentrating on further upgrades to the website.
On 30th July 2015, Mark was elected as the new Centre President, after Dylan Cooper's resignation due to work commitments in Benalla, Victoria. At the time, he was the longest serving and most experienced Committee Member, therefore graciously nominating himself to take over the role. Interestingly, Mark previously served as Vice President, resigning in September 2014, stating that he had no intention of becoming President therefore allowing for someone else to learn the role.
Mark took over as President with the following statement; "I am not going to do as much as previous Presidents and I will be constantly saying, here is a job, who wants to do it?, rather than doing it myself". Mark also changed the internal communications, to ensure all Committee Members were involved in the decision making process and sharing the workload. This approach worked very well for Mark, which was the complete opposite to other Presidents he previously served under. Some of those Presidents took on most of the workload and became overwhelmed throughout their Presidencies.
While Mark was President during the 2015/16 season, he was also the Website and Results Manager. There were several challenges to deal with; The change of President, registrations continued to decline despite the Committees efforts in marketing, and shortly after taking over as President, the Registrar and Coaching Managers both resigned from the Committee. Mark, along with Katy and Georgia, shared the role of Registrar for the remainder of the season, adding to his workload. However, there were several highlights throughout the season; improved relationship between Little Athletics and the Senior Club, hosting a Level C Walk Judging course, increased registrations in the U6-U8 age groups and good retention rate across all age groups. During the summer season, Mark managed the administration table on a Saturday morning and spent the rest of his time talking to our parents, families, sponsors and key officials, liaising and ensuring everyone was happy with Waverley LAC. This was Marks way of gathering feedback and ideas to improve the Centre. Mark also assisted with set up and pack up, troubleshooting technology issues out on the track and signing off on Centre Records.
Mark was re-elected as President for the 2016/17 season, since no one else wanted to take on the position. This would be his final year on the Waverley Committee, so Mark did not hold dual positions or take on any additional responsibilities. He wanted to ensure that the Committee could function properly and everyone was doing their job. The season was an overall success with less challenges, an increase in registration numbers, equipment upgrades, no Committee resignations and great support from everyone involved. Mark continued to manage the administration on a Saturday morning, liaise and talk to families, set up, pack up, sign off on Centre Records and troubleshoot out on the track.
At the 2017 AGM, Mark handed over the Presidency to Life Member and Past President, Dylan Cooper.
Even though Mark is no longer involved on the Committee, he continues to host and manage our website and database from behind the scenes.
Add more information on Mark's involvement as System Administrator.
Waverley Open Day
From 2008/09, Mark was a Key Official at the Waverley Open Day. Along with Kathy, he set up and ran the various Results Input systems. From 2008/11, Mark and the Results Input team would work inside the Committee Office, usually in the 40+ degree heat all day long. When the Open Day was held again in 2013 and 2014, the Results Input team "moved house" into the much cooler Announcers Booth, which overlooks the track. For our first Open Day after a 2 year break, we used the new Results Database system for recording our results. All went smoothly except for a few minor bugs, that Mark quickly fixed on the spot to ensure that it didn’t hold our program up at all.
LAVic ICT Committee
Mark expressed his interest to join the LAVic Information, Communication & Technology Committee in 2014/15 and attended their one and only meeting. Mark shared his ideas and views on all things technology, websites, Timing Solutions, Team App etc, but the Committee was driven towards one goal and that was Timing Solutions. As the Committee did not want to open up and search for alternative systems or improvements, Mark resigned.
Email sent from Mark to the LAVic ICT Director
I hand-coded the website for Waverley last season as IMG, Timing Solutions and our old results system NARS were not able to provide for our requirements. While Timing Solutions' ResultsHQ has come a long way, it is still a long way from being a suitable system. I would be happy to share information on what I have done so that these features can be incorporated into the relevant websites. Most of the features are not visible on the public website but have been written to make it easier for the Committee to run the Centre.
The building of our current website was done in Marks spare time, between working a full time job and spending time with his family. He has a passion for websites and system developments which has driven these significant upgrades during Marks time at WLAC. All of the website coding is done behind the scenes and only half of it is actually visible online. The Waverley website is by far one of the best websites in Little Athletics.
Mark was such a valuable asset to our centre and any Centre would be lucky to have him, with all of his knowledge and experience. Mark has always provided any assistance, guidance, advice and reasoning that he can, is able to provide the detailed explanations to the many questions that arise, including what the Centre has done in the past, to help identify what has and hasn’t worked. He also made it his responsibility to ensure that the Centre is under good governance and that Committee Members are fulfilling their roles properly.
Mark Cosham was a tireless volunteer at the Waverley Centre, who volunteered 9 years on the Committee. He was involved for the betterment of all children and volunteers. His focus was on athletes striving to achieve Personal Bests and ensuring that they enjoy their time at our Centre, along with streamlining processes to ensure that parents and adults can enjoy volunteering their time. He is still involved behind the scenes as our System Administrator. Mark was never involved at Region or State Championships, as his children did not participate outside the Centre. He was always happy to help anyone when help is needed, or sought, he also tackled any issues that arose, head on.
In 2014/15, Mark was awarded Life Membership at the Waverley Little Athletics Centre Inc., in recognition of his exemplary service to the Centre.
Mark had a lot of experience and input with selecting the criteria for end of season trophies and awards. His input regarding discipline awards was crucial in the decision to abolish those trophies in 2013 and concentrate on all athletes. On Presentation Days, Mark always set up the required tables, tents and trophies. He was also very experienced in areas outside his own positions; how the programs run, WWC requirements, Open Day and previous issues, Registration Fees (held numerous discussions), setting the yearly calendar and the Records Policy.
Every season Mark was in charge of updating Committee contact listings on the website, changing and creating Committee Members website access details and ensuring these people know how to access the site. He helped at every Registration Day, usually held in September. His role comprised of assisting the Registrar and Treasurer with each process and helping with online registrations. He taught most Registrars what to do from scratch and worked fantastically with each of them. Mark attended almost every Committee meeting during his time on the Committee. Also, as part of his Computer Manager role he was responsible for exporting data from NARS regarding schools for LAPS programs, creating and printing Committee name tags, creating and organising end of season certificates and printing athletes barcodes for registration patches, athletes details lists and temporary registration patches for those who lose or forget theirs on a weekly basis.
Recording sheets for each week’s competition didn't print and sort themselves. Preparation for the weekend’s competition took quite some time and Mark spent his Thursday and Friday nights from 2008 until 2016 printing the Recording Sheets and copies of the program for all of the recording folders. While using NARS, this process took approx. 4 hours or more each week. Using the current Results Database, the process takes less than an hour. Mark also exported athlete’s data from NARS and imported it into NBS to allow for barcode scanning and vise-versa to upload results into the system. Mark always purchased out of pocket expenses for this job, namely printers, toner, stationary, paper, website domain names and the web hosting, paying for these items and seeking reimbursement for such, without any fuss.
Mark and Kathy managed the excel spread sheets and input the results on the day for the 2008/10 Waverley Games Days.
On the day of competitions, Mark arrived by 8am with the timing unit boxes and computers, setting up the Registrars table and computers with Wi-Fi access and anything else that is required. Once the administration was set up, or later during the season once the administration has become very quiet, Mark would always be outside on the arena helping to set up the timing gates, timing box, tables, chairs, tents, recording computer, first aid table and anything else that is required. During the Program, Mark spent his time helping inside at administration or outside on the track, often helping teach someone the results barcode scanning or troubleshooting the barcode computer or timing gates. When the program is coming to an end, Mark was one of few people that always helped to pack up equipment, the timing gates, tables, tents and BBQ. When pack up is finished, Mark didn’t pack up and leave, he always stayed behind well after everyone else had gone home, to ensure the equipment is packed away correctly, the money is accounted for and the Clubrooms are locked. Mark took home the timing box equipment to charge the batteries ready for use the following week, he had done so since at least 2012, if not before.
- 2014/15 - WLAC Life Member
- 2008/11 - Computer/Recording Manager - Waverley Open Day Key Official
- 2008/14 - Committee - Computer Manager
- 2008/17 - Administration
- 2009/10 - Standards Review Sub-Committee
- 2010/11 - Minute Secretary
- 2011/12 - Representative - LAVic Minifest & Gala Award Dinner - Sandown
- 2011/15 - Representative - LAVic Annual General Meeting
- 2012/13 - Representative - LAVic Centrefest & Gala Award Dinner - Bendigo
- 2012/15 - Committee - Vice President
- 2013/14 - Representative - LAVic Minifest & Gala Award Dinner - Albert Park
- 2013/15 - Results Input/Comms Manager - Waverley Open Day Key Official
- 2013/22 - System Administrator
- 2014/15 - Life Member
- 2014/15 - Representative - LAVic Centrefest & Gala Award Dinner - Bendigo
- 2014/16 - Committee - Website and Results Manager
- 2015/16 - Co-Registrar
- 2015/17 - Committee - President
- 2013/14 - LAVic Incorporation Sub-Committee
- 2013/14 - LAVic Volunteer of the Year Nominee
- 2014/16 - LAVic Information, Communication & Technology Committee
WLAC Life Members - 2014/15
Tony McMahon, Kathy Cosham, Geoff Gray, Mark Cosham, Mark Baxter, Daryl Thiele & Bruce Reynolds
Dylan Cooper Life Membership Presentation - 2015/16
With Life Members Daryl Thiele, Mark Cosham (President) & Kathy Cosham
WLAC Life Members - 2018/19
50th Anniversary Celebration
Bruce Reynolds, Lindsay Harrison, Barry Cole, Mark Baxter, Mal Walker, Russell Weber, Ed Chinery, Daryl Thiele, Mark Cosham, Nicole Mardell (Frank Mardell*), Doug Kerr & Dylan Cooper (President)