Karen Atkinson named Forest Technical Director

Nottingham Forest Netball have named Karen Atkinson MBE as their technical advisor ahead of next season.

Atkinson joins Forest ahead of its inaugural season as the team prepares to compete in the Netball Super League.

The 46-year-old arrives with a wealth of experience in professional netball as a player, coach and most recently as Performance Director for Netball Scotland.

During her decorated playing career, Atkinson received 122 caps for England, played at four Commonwealth Games and four World Cups as well as captaining her country between 2007 and 2011.

After playing, Atkinson moved into coaching in the Netball Super League, having spells with Hertfordshire Mavericks, Loughborough Lightning and Strathclyde Sirens, named Coach of the Year in 2017 and 2021.

In 2014, Atkinson was also awarded an MBE for her services to netball.

Upon her appointment at Nottingham Forest Netball, Atkinson said: “Taking on a role with Nottingham Forest in an advisory capacity was too good an opportunity to turn down. My role involves assisting with key recruitments, such as the exciting appointment of Chelsea Pitman as Head Coach, along with other key support staff, and sharing my experience across performance netball.

“It is an exciting time for the sport, but especially for a club like Nottingham Forest who are ambitious and can start with fresh ideas and a unique approach on how they want to grow their club across all aspects of performance and player development as well as engaging with and inspiring the community.

“I am looking forward to supporting a new, up and coming coach like Chelsea. She was a standout during the recruitment process and although it is her first Head Coach appointment, she has the netball IQ, self-awareness and personality to succeed.

“I am passionate about the development of high-performance systems alongside talented coaches and we will be putting the support around Chelsea and the team to ensure they create a positive, successful environment.”

Nottingham Forest Chairman, Tom Cartledge said: “‘We are thrilled to be welcoming Karen to Nottingham Forest Netball. She brings a wealth of knowledge, skills, and passion to create a new leading club disrupting the existing game.

“We aspire to create a community driven club that provides pathways for young, aspiring athletes in the East Midlands, whilst completing at the very highest level.”

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