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Become a VAFA Umpire

Commencing in 1892, the VAFA currently has over 13,000 registered players from 74 Clubs and stands as the largest senior community football competition in Australia. Much of the VAFA’s success depends on the umpires who ensure the integrity of the game and provide a forum where players’ skills, team dynamics, passion and dedication determine game outcomes.

How to register your interest and join the VAFA


Eligibility and Requirements

Umpires need to be over the age of 15 as of April 1st of that year. If not, they require a parental guardian consent form that allows them to officiate VAFA matches.

Umpires over the age of 18 require a valid volunteer Working with Children Check. This can be obtained at the below link;



  • The VAFA umpires train Monday and Wednesday nights.
  • Wednesday’s is the main training night with an optional training session occurring Monday night with the SMJFL
  • The YJFL also provide opportunities for umpires out in the north-east to train with those umpires on Monday and Wednesday nights.


Umpiring is considered a hobby and therefore umpires are paid without being taxed. Payment begins at $70 per game up to $168 depending on the division of football officiated and discipline during the home and away fixtures. Umpires appointed to finals and representative football receive pay increases on their home and away payment. Payment is received twice a month.

Who are our Umpires?

From young men and women who love footy and choose umpiring as a career to injured or retired players, as well as mothers and fathers of young umpires who love our great game. The VAFA is proud to be a family friendly competition and the VAFA promotes respect for umpires at all times and encourages relationships between our officials and clubs. This includes the VAFA policy for any alcohol to be consumed by spectators or other parties during a VAFA match. This policy ensures that our games aren’t marred by alcohol-induced incidents.


The VAFAUA are a member club of the VAFA and will welcome all new and existing umpires with open arms at their base at Elsternwick Park. The enjoyment of being involved with a club and involved in football is a part of the culture. Friendships are forged that last a lifetime. An annual membership fee is deducted, with the VAFAUA running a social calendar and end of season awards night function that benefits all umpires. The UA have their own dedicated website which includes uniform purchasing information. Details can be found at https://www.vafaua.asn.au

Representative and Talent Pathways

The VAFA are the leaders in providing the VFL & AFL with the best officials in the country, with the association having a Big V Umpires program, with selected umpires of all disciplines chosen to travel interstate when applicable with the Representative side. The VAFA are proud of the umpires that have progressed to the VFL/AFL over many years. Former VAFA umpires represented one-third of the 2020 AFL Grand Final umpiring crew, which in a national competition is a tremendous achievement, and testament to the coaching and pathway the VAFA provide for umpires aspiring to progress to the elite level.

Key Contacts


  • Umpire Operations Manager – Matt Dervan ([email protected])
  • Field Umpire Head Coach – Russell Davidson
  • Premier Field Umpire Coach – Owen Hinson
  • Senior Field Umpire Coach – Lionel Katz
  • Development Field Umpire Coach – Guy Hexter
  • Boundary Umpire Coach – Ryan O’Shea
  • Goal Umpire Coach – Bernie Jephson
  • Fitness Coach – Matthew Clinton


  • President – Josh Colman
  • Secretary – Patrick Mathews
  • Treasurer – Sam Scott

History of VAFA Umpires

The VAFA Umpires have been based at Elsternwick Park since the VAFA moved their offices there in 1960. The VAFA Umpires Association is the representative body of the VAFA Umpires and the Umpires together form the largest VAFA club.

The VAFA is always looking to sign up new umpires, so if you want to stay fit, keep involved in football and want to officiate in the best, most popular and welcoming league in all community football then the VAFA Umpires is a great place to start.

The VAFA currently has 28 former umpires officiating in the AFL and state league competitions.

Former VAFA Umpires on the AFL List;


  • Chris Donlon (2011 AFL GF Umpire)
  • Leigh Fisher**
  • Robert O’Gorman
  • Nicholas Brown
  • Simon Meredith (2012-14, 2016-17, 2020 AFL GF Umpire)
  • Andre Gianfagna **
  • Cameron Dore**
  • Andrew Heffernan
  • Brent Wallace**

**Promoted as part of AFL Player-Umpire Pathway


  • Damien Cusack (2017 AFL GF Umpire)
  • Matthew Jenkinson
  • Michael Saunders (2013 AFL GF Umpire)
  • James Scully


  • Matthew Dervan (2020 AFL GF Umpire)
  • Steven Piperno (2018-20 AFL GF Umpire)

Former Umpires on the State League and associated competitions list;


  • Peter Bailes (AFLW Listed)
  • Jacob Rockwell
  • Josh Ball


  • Sam Beer
  • Luke Myatt
  • Adrian Pretoriuos (AFLW Listed)
  • Jack Punshon
  • Raushaan Seychell


  • Tope Adepoyibi (AFLW Listed)
  • Joe Dorrat-Thorpe
  • Chris Doyle
  • Jake Marnie
  • Jack Stammers (AFLW Listed)

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