Volleyball: Hilly Dux Profile 2023

Name: Hillary Dux Imbuwa

Position: President

Sports Code: Namibia Volleyball Federation

Place of birth: Ngoma area, Zambezi region

Date of Birth: March 24, 1977

Who is Dux, and how did you get involved in sport and especially administration?

I would say, my sports administration career was a special calling which started way back in high school, where I was chosen by my high school volleyball coach (Mr. Lucious Chaata) by then to captain our Kizito College male volleyball team and play a role of coaching for the under 13 girls’ team. I then continued to play and lead during my college years at the then Caprivi College of Education during our participation to TISAN, as well as other regional games. Which later grew further through my professional career as a teacher, where I continued to volunteer to administer and coach at every school I went to as a teacher.

Driven by my passion for volleyball, I then got an opportunity to serve in different sports portfolios, such as a former vice president of the Namibia Volleyball Federation from May 2016 to December 2017, also a Volleyball Commissioner for the Confederation of School Sport Association for Southern Africa (COSSASA) as from April 2014 to April 2017. I also served as National Development Director for the Namibia Volleyball Federation (NVF) and the National coordinator for the African Dream Volleyball development project from November 2014 to March 2016. I have also served as Namibia Schools Sport Union (NSSU) Oshana Regional Chairperson as from October 2010 to December 2013, during which time I served on the (NSSU) National Policy Drafting Committee Member from April 2011 to December 2013.

All this position contributed to be the founder and Chairperson of Namibia Volleyball Federation (NVF) Far Northern Association from November 2010 to December 2013 and before then I coached the Under 17 Namibia National Volleyball team to Confederation of School Sports Association of Southern Africa (COSSASA) ball games for 2008, 2011, 2012 and 2013.

Currently I serve as the CAVB marketing Commissioner since 2020 to date

You sound very passionate about volleyball, what does you work entail?

My volleyball administration work involves, more of providing efficient solutions through stakeholder engagements, by setting achievable strategic targets. Articulating the NVF vision and modelling sportsmanship values. Creating and fostering a harmonious inclusive volleyball environment in the country. While inspiring and motivating my team to be consistent in order to produce exceptional work limited resources.

You spoke about your early years at scholl and how you thrusted into leadership role at an early age. What would you say inspired your passion for sports?

My interest in sports was sparked by my teachers at primary school level, who made sure that sports was compulsory for every learner at most schools in Caprivi region (now Zambezi). Whereas, every Wednesday or Thursday afternoon was reserved for sport activities, where learners will compete amongst themselves in different sport codes (soccer, netball and volleyball) or compete against other schools in the region. Considering that soccer was more popular for boys, competition was also high, hence the only option for me was to learn how to play volleyball, where I continued to excel from primary throughout to my high school days.

How do you handle setbacks and failures?

For me, setbacks or failures are part of the life journey, which one have to accept and put into perspective in order to overcome them. One must have a game plan in life, predefined strategies to help one put the event in context. I have personally had multiple setbacks in my life journey, which I have managed to overcome, through my personal values. One has to develop resiliency to failure and still use such failure to your advantage moving forward.

Have you experience challenge and how has that influenced your growth?

In one’s personal and professional life, challenges can not be avoided, but what matters most is how one navigates through them. For me personally, and in my life experience as an administrator, attitude, consistency and perseverance have been my strongest weapon and a game changer. As they say “the way you start your morning pretty much dictates how the rest of your day will progress”. This might sound plain, but once you make it a culture to start your morning with positivity, the rest of the day and those you work with will be a success story. The right mindset and the right team have helped me grow as a leader over the years. Despite my role in volleyball, my professional career experiences have been a key driver in enhancing my leadership skills. My earlier realisation that “leadership” is the key to driving any sector, made me invest more into personal .

You talked about your personnel development, please share how that has shaped out?

My professional evolvement has been a roller coaster, pretty driven by an ending desire for personal growth. With my earlier realisation that “leadership” is the key to driving any sector, I took a conscience decision back then to focus my professional growth more into leadership and management space. Where I decided to further my studies into educational management, project management and ended up acquiring my Master degree in Public Administration. A career choice I do not regret at all.

While at the same time, I utilised every opportunity to enhance my volleyball knowledge and skills through the NVF’s capacity building programs and was fortunate enough to also be entrusted by the federation in 2015 to study for a volleyball qualification at Leipzig University in Germany. With the curriculum focusing on volleyball coaching (theory & practice), sports medicine, sports science, sport psychology, sports management and marketing, among others.

What has been the key lesson learnt over the years?

Lesson experience from my journey is that, self-awareness is essential. Always remain optimistic and take calculated risks. Be humble and learn from those around you. If possible, always get feedback from your network.

Leadership sounds like something you are passionate about, what advise do you have for those in sports leadership and those who want to climb the same ladder?

The right leadership is key for sport development in this country, and as leaders, we need to set a vision, articulate the strategy that will inspire the organisation we lead, in order to embrace change. We must be willing to take calculated risks and learn from failures. Invest in personal development as a leader and always create opportunities for growth for those willing to grow and aspire to be leaders. Above all, we need to inspire and be able to use our influence to build a winning team that will successfully implement our strategic goals.

How do you balance your personnel life and your career?

This is never easy, but one need the right mindset to help you strike a balance between one’s professional career and personal life. And one of the secretes is to know your life priorities and have great sense of time management. This has allowed me to create a fair balance act between my professional works, while at the same time allowed me gaps in between to spend quality time with your family.

Sports in this country is run by volunteers, with no financial rewards, how do you survive?

Considering that my leadership role at the helm of the Namibia Volleyball Federation has no financial reward, meaning sometimes one has to spend more of your own resources to get things done. I will say my beloved wife and kids have been my number one support system in this journey. Not forgetting those who believe in my leadership and continue to serve with me and their lovely families who to allows them time to do voluntary work for the federation without any financial reward.

Sometimes people forget that leaders need to be motivated and inspired, are you in a position to share those who mentored or inspired you?

For any leader, mentorship is key for a steady growth. And I am proud to indicate that, one person that truly impacted my choices and played a big mentorship role in me getting into the NVF leadership is none other than Mr. Joel Matheus. Joel is such an inspiration both on and off the volleyball court. And for me and others who are fortunate enough to have worked closely with him have no doubt in his capability to lead, inspire and nature talent.

Through my involvement with volleyball under the NSSU, Joel identified my leadership potential and requested I join him and work closely with him as a development director at the federation level during his time as NVF Vice President and as President respectively. I am today at the helm of NVF through his influence and the professional guidance that he accorded me. Those who continue to volunteer their resources, time and energy to the growth of the game of volleyball in this country are my greatest inspiration.

What keeps me motivated?

As NVF President, my motivation comes from the team around me.

Who has committed to believe and support the effective implementation of my strategy?

The steady growth of the game of volleyball over the past years and the support we get from the community, FIVB, CAVB plays as a motivation for my team and I to continue doing more in realizing our ultimate goal.

How do you stay passionate and engaged especially when the tides and trubulations are high?

One thing that is so tough for being a sports administrator in this country, is the lack for political will to see sports and an untapped employment creation industry that can equally contribute to social economic development. A tangible financial investment by government into the sports industry will assist many sports leaders to successfully implement long term strategic goals. One has to understand that transformational leadership does not depend on passion alone, but requires financial support.

Has your commitment, time and energy in sports being worth while?

My NVF leadership roles has seen worthwhile outcomes. Whereas, our efforts as leaders continue to positively impact many young people who have now made volleyball a lifestyle. The game continues to be popular by day, as we can see the generated interest for the game from both urban and rural setups.

As the person at the helm of NVF, please share some of your achievement.

Despite the challenges of limited resources for a speedy implementation of our strategic plan, NVF under my leadership has some accomplishments which we as leaders are proud of. Which includes:

a) A steady growth in terms of volleyball population across the country.

b) The implementation of capacity building for volleyball administrators, coaches and referees.

c) Volleyball is now attracting more media coverage then never before, due to its growth.

d) Improved good governance structures considered to be one of the best under CAVB and NSC.

e) 80% of volleyball players in our leagues are below the age of 27. A good measure for grassroots development.

f) Improved gender representation for both players and administrators.

g) Volleyball has now moved from a development sports code to a priority sport code under the NSC sports code categorization.

How does the future look like for the sports code?

As head of the current leadership, our ultimate goal for now, is to continue creating better opportunities for our young talent to be able to represent the country on the continent and beyond. By seeing through the national team project in the coming months and years. While on a professional personal level, I aspire to continue serving my country and the continent on much higher sports administration level, by sharing the knowledge and experience gained so far.

How do you want to be remembered?

My legacy in sport will be fairly articulated by those I have impacted during my tenure and those that continue to observe from a distance. Those are the people who will be in a better position to speak about my legacy in volleyball and sport in general.

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