Ann Castles to retire after 20 years of loyal service

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After 20 years of playing a crucial role shaping the umpiring pathway, Ann Castles has announced her retirement from Netball Victoria.

Ann’s contribution to netball in the state cannot be understated. Since joining Netball Victoria in 1996 in the role of Umpire Educator in the Field, she has continually upheld our values of teamwork, accountability, integrity, innovation and empowerment.

Her passion and dedication for umpiring has seen her empower hundreds of umpires and umpire coaches, working as a mentor, tester and umpire coordinator.

When reflecting on her time at Netball Victoria, Ann would like to thank all the amazing, passionate and dedicated volunteers who have supported her over the last 20 years.

“Without these wonderful people, netball, could not be the sport it is today, so thanks to these people for everything, especially the friendship. It has been a joy working with you all over the many years and I know I am leaving umpiring in your good hands.”

Ann will continue with volunteering in netball working with Netball Victoria in umpire coaching and mentoring at Netball Victoria events and competitions. Ann will also use this time to work on her bucket list and spending quality time with families and friends

“On behalf of the Board and Staff at Netball Victoria I extend a heartfelt congratulations to Ann Castles on her 20 years of service and on her impending retirement,” said Netball Victoria CEO Rosie King.

“Annie’s warmth and care for our netball community is well recognised and appreciated by so many.  She has made a massive difference to the game of netball; through her professional approach, her eye for detail, and her genuine care and compassion for those she works with.  Ann has nurtured many; providing feedback, including some tough love no doubt over the years which would be well balanced with lots of encouragement and support.  We will miss Annie at Netball Victoria however her legacy remains intact.”

“Thank you, Annie, for your incredible contribution and we look forward to seeing you around a netball court soon!”

 Highlights and achievements

  • Assisted in the planning, development and implementation of the Netball Victoria Beginners Umpiring Course.
  • Developed a visual Level 1 Umpires Course to suit players/umpires with a hearing difficulty.
  • Number 1 ticket holder at Mathoura Netball Club
  • Twice selected as National AA candidate
  • Awarded the National Anne Clark Memorial Scholarship
  • Officiated at training/match play for Australian Diamonds, England, Phoenix and Kestrels.
  • Umpire and Technical advisor for Welsh and Fijian Netball Teams.
  • A Grade Tester and National Course Presenter
  • Selector and Umpire Coach of Netball Victoria’s High Performance Squads.
  • 10 years as Dandenong Valley Regional Umpire Co-ordinator during which time Annie received a Netball Victoria Service Award for contribution to umpire development.


Since announcing her retirement, Ann and Netball Victoria have received many emails from the netball community about Ann’s wonderful contribution.

Lynne Sheehan – Former colleague and VNL Reference Group Member

In all the years, Ann’s enthusiasm and passion for developing umpires has never waned. Her enthusiasm about the development of umpires is contagious and she has empowered hundreds of umpires and umpire coaches around the state.

Her contribution to the organisation has been exceptional and I feel privileged to have had the opportunity to work with her across many of her 20 years at Netball Vic. Congratulations on all you have achieved over the years Annie. 

Leah Saunders – Former Goulbourn Valley Umpire Supervisor and long-time mentor and friend

I first met Ann Castles when she was fairly new in the role of Umpire in the Field for Netball Victoria in 1997. I was a fresh faced 14-year-old and she was a bubbly and enthusiastic personality that I enjoyed learning from. Not much has changed in 20 years of umpiring and friendship.

Say Thanks 

Netball Victoria will be hosting a staff function on Wednesday 8 March, International Women’s Day, to acknowledge Ann’s contribution – What a befitting day to recognise and celebrate Ann’s achievements and contribution to Netball Victoria.



Join us in helping celebrate Annie’s 20 years of service to Netball Victoria.

Event: Association Championship Finals Day at State Netball Hockey Centre.
Date: Sunday 25 June
Time: TBC
What: On Court Presentation and Afternoon Tea

More information about this function and how to register your attendance (for catering purpose) to come closer to the date.