Liz Bowie from Aberdeen FC Community Trust
This interview features Liz Bowie who is the Chief Executive at Aberdeen FC Community Trust. The interview is part of our Women in Football campaign, which focuses on creating visibility for women working in the football industry.
1. What do you like the most about working in football?
Having joined Aberdeen FC Community Trust in February 2020, I have been struck by the dynamism of the football world. We are encouraged to try new initiatives and there is a “can do” attitude pervading the club. The speed of decision making, and implementation is incredibly fast paced which is empowering.
2. Was it difficult for you to make your way in football?
I have only been in the industry for just over a year and have not found any challenges to my progression. As a female Chief Executive, I did wonder before joining whether there might be some stereotypical gender biased reaction to my appointment within a football setting. The reality is so far removed from this and I enjoy a fantastic, supportive and creative relationship with my counterparts.
3. Did you have any (female) role models when you were younger?
As a dancer, my idol was Dame Margot Fonteyn, Prima Ballerina of the Royal Ballet. As more local role models, I would probably say that I had two school teachers who really brought out the best in me.
4. Which advice would you give to a girl that would like to work in football?
I would encourage anyone to work in football. I think you should always go for what you want and believe in. Don’t listen to those who portray football as a man’s world. There are lots of opportunities in all aspects of community work and club administration – as well as increasingly on the field. It’s an exciting, fast paced and passionate environment so my advice would be enter this world willing to give it 100% because you will reap the rewards!
5. What was the biggest challenge that you face during your career?
The biggest challenge that I faced was leaving the University of Aberdeen where I had worked as Director of Development and Alumni Relation for 21 years. Again, the passion and enthusiasm of the Chairman of Aberdeen FC was what helped me to take a leap to a completely different career and I have never looked back.
6. What are the biggest changes that you have recognised when it comes to Women in football?
Having had little to do with the Women’s game until I took up this role, I find it hard to comment on changes. Instead, my observation would be that football has still got some way to go before women are treated equally. Football should see this as an opportunity to bring a whole new, exciting product to market which could create another demographic of fans into football clubs; capitalise on the huge uptake at the grassroots level, and encourage physical and mental well-being.
You can find the overview with all role models here.