Eden Shepherd – Lewes Community Football Club

Eden Shepherd

Written by: John

Firstly, I would like to thank my fellow Lewes FC owners for considering me to join the Board of Directors and for taking the time to read my election address. I gratefully welcome the opportunity to show why I can be thought of as a strong candidate.

Since being introduced to Lewes FC, I have gained a thorough understanding of how this football
club is disrupting the status quo of the football world. Equality FC is truly at the core of all decisions made, evidenced by observing the actions of the club since it embarked on its equality campaign.

As a lifelong football fan, I have felt for some time that professional football has a moral obligation to drive genuine social change by taking concrete measures to do so, rather than simply employing temporary slogans or the occasional social media post. I also understand that football is a business and, like all businesses, it needs to be financially stable. I understand the importance of various income streams such as business partnerships, ticket sales, merchandise, fundraising etc. to ensure the club continues to thrive.

Learning of the impact Lewes has had on the lives it has touched so far has been awe inspiring.
However the capabilities of this movement really hit home after taking my fifteen year old sister,
who has shown little-to-no interest in football in the past, to The Dripping Pan for her first women’s football match. During and after the match she was excited, interested and keen about football in ways I had never seen before. The crucial takeaway however was her opinion that the women on the pitch that day were role models, women for her to idolise. These were sporting women, who achieved success through hard work and dedication to their craft, being idolised by young girls. Something far too scarce in the world of football.

In the past, I have strived toward influencing humanitarian and environmental issues through a
plant-based lifestyle. Now, since having my attention brought to Lewes FC and its Equality FC ethos, I am hoping to continue in the same vein and become a Director of the club, championing its mission of promoting inclusivity and parity.

My speciality area is Business Development, shown by my BA (Hons) in International Football
Business from UCFB Wembley Stadium and my employment history in related roles. With this in
mind, I believe I would further benefit the growth of strategic pillars, ‘Full Financial Sustainability’ and ‘Own House in Order’. I have spent years researching and producing reports on all aspects of running a football club, from stadium utilisation, to football fans as customers, to blockchain technology and its potential use cases in football. Furthermore, as someone born almost exactly on the border of Millennials and Gen Z, I believe I can bring a unique perspective to the club and help it target the younger age groups who play a crucial role in developing social change.

It is hugely encouraging to see that the Equality FC campaign has brought commercial success to the club, with average attendances to women’s matches now over five times what they were in 2017
and with the ever-growing number of Owner sign-ups. If elected as a Director, I will assist in the
further development of the clubs ethical objectives and the positive relationship that has with
commercial prosperity.