HISTORIC FIRST: USQ Saints name first female president in Downs Rugby history
RUGBY : Dimity Jaeger is the future of Darling Downs rugby, but her focus is to build on the successes of the past.
Jaeger recently accepted the USQ Rugby presidency role and in doing so she "created" history becoming the first female president of a Darling Downs rugby club.
"I love the club - the camaraderie in rugby is fantastic," Jaeger, 25, said.
"It's a very family orientated, friendly and accepting from the juniors right through to the senior ranks.
"When our last president stepped down I was asked by members of the committee if I would consider taking on the role.
"I thought about it for a little while and said yes.
"It's an honour to be the president - particularly the first female president of a rugby club in the Darling Downs.
"I think it's a big step forward not just for myself, but also rugby and women in sport as a whole."
A relative newcomer to rugby union - Jaeger first started playing the sport three years ago - she believes a focus on "past values" is the key to returning the club to its glory days.
"We have the right people in place at the club - experienced coaches and volunteers," Jaeger said.
"And I want to use our old boys network more, draw on their experience and knowledge.
"In the 90s and 2000s we (USQ Saints) were one of the biggest clubs and I'd like to get us back there - winning premierships again.
"To do that I think we need to go back to those values and focus that made us successful in the past.
"I'd like to think I can bring some new ideas to the club as well.
"I've been playing sport since I was four years old.
"I've played and coached hockey at a high level here and overseas and want to share some of that experience."
Recovering from an ACL injury, Jaeger is not playing this season but she has been a keen sideline observer.
"Even with the challenges of COVID are numbers are really good," she said.
"We have more than 50 male players which is the biggest number we've had in long time.
"Our women are looking very good as well. I think the restrictions around non-contact training actually helped.
"It gave them the chance to develop the skills they need and to learn the game more.
"Hopefully we can retain our new players and progressively develop our teams.
"The club has a very bright future."