The second Mudgee Guardian People of the Year list aims to recognise the most influential, impactful and notable people in the region in 2020. Their impact could be positive, negative or somewhere in the middle, but one thing is certain, they made a difference.
Jo Ioane has been an asset to junior hockey in Mudgee for a number of years.
At the beginning of 2020, Jo again helped coach the NSW Centre of Development program in the Western region. The program ended in a three-day carnival where Jo coached the under 15s Girls Western Stars Orange team.
Just after this carnival, community sport was canceled due to COVID-19.
During the shutdown period, Jo continued to plan for junior hockey.
She joined zoom meetings and read many articles about how to run community sport after COVID-19.
Jo kept up with the restrictions to ensure that the program we were planning complied with these rules.
Although she was unable to play hockey this year due to an injury, that didn't stop her from being involved in the sport.
Jo didn't miss any opportunity to improve her coaching skills and joined many online workshops so she can help make hockey in Mudgee the best it can be.
She was there every Friday helping set up, coach then pack up at Mudgee junior hockey.
On Saturday she would come with us to Lithgow and watch us play even though she couldn't.
Jo not only enjoys coaching but she also wants to show young girls that women can coach and be leaders too.
Her encouraging and kind nature is something that all coaches should strive to have.
She wants all kids to have fun, be confident, and love the sport we do no matter what walk of life they come from.
Jo inspires us all to be the best coaches and people we can be.
Thank you for all your encouragement, dedication, and support you give us as a family and also to the wider hockey community.
More on Jo: