Rulla Kelly-Mansell

Footballer and founder of Make Runs Maxi

TASNomineeYoung Australian of the Year2021

Rulla Kelly-Mansell is a proud Tulampanga Pakana man, State League footballer and the director of Make Runs Maxi, a charity that promotes positive mental health.

Having struggled with depression, anxiety and attempted suicide, Rulla uses his experience to help other young people to navigate the challenges of life.

He founded Make Runs Maxi in honour of Isaac Maxi Walters, who lost his life at age 16. Rulla had coached Maxi in football.

Rulla works with schools, sporting clubs and community groups to help Aboriginal and non-Aboriginal Tasmanians enhance their emotional wellbeing and to give people a sense of purpose and fulfilment.

In 2020, Rulla was diagnosed with a rare and aggressive type of testicular cancer (T2 Embryonal) and underwent nine weeks of intense chemotherapy. He has been able to showcase resilience and his passion for football since returning to play once treatment finished.