Author Topic: Interesting times!  (Read 883 times)

Offline mightytiges

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Interesting times!
« on: June 18, 2004, 01:46:07 AM »
From: Chief executive revolving door claims another victim
Patrick Smith
The Australian
June 18, 2004

On Wednesday, Richmond appointed Steven Wright to replace Ian Campbell. Any hour now Melbourne will appoint a replacement for Ray Ellis.

And these are not jobs that were decided by a toss of a coin. No one stuck a tail on a donkey. They were not picked out of a hat. No one went "eeny meeny miney mo". All came to their respective clubs via a sophisticated protocol and formula followed by the country's leading personnel consultants.

Wright comes with sound credentials. He has been the CEO of the Australian Grand Prix Corporation since 2001. Previously he worked as a solicitor specialising in sports law and dispute resolution.

He has a Bachelor of Economics majoring in accounting, a Bachelor of Law with Honours and Masters of Law. And he is a devout Tiger.

As impressive as that reads, history says that within 12 months it may all come to nought. The football world is a volatile mix of business and sport, tradition and folklore. It can bring the most sensible of men undone. Campbell, Leighton and Ellis were not fools.

The Wright appointment has stopped an exciting coup in its tracks. Club president Clinton Casey was going to be challenged by a faction that was hoping to deliver Kevin Sheedy as coach and a leading football executive as the new CEO. Sheedy was proving reluctant and with a new CEO already in place the move has come to a full stop.

There is at least one other faction preparing to mount a challenge to Casey and his board. Presently, supporter Michael Pahoff is collecting 100 signatures from Richmond members to force an extraordinary annual meeting and a spill of all board positions.

Wright was not Casey's first choice. The club, with some pushing from the AFL, had previously wooed Leighton Wood, a sport executive who had headed up the Melbourne Commonwealth Games bid. However, groups moving to challenge Casey and his board last night gave the appointment of Wright strong endorsement.

Wood was wrongly named as the club CEO in sections of the Melbourne media a day after Campbell stepped down. The fact that Wood had not handled a business as big as a football club told against him. However it would be most surprising if Wood does not feature in future appointments.

Richmond still has much work to do. A review of the football department is underway and the findings will be messy. The club has finally fully activated its $4 million redirection from the AFL after its bank approved of the facility late last week.

The club is still to hear from the TAC over its lucrative sponsorship deal that matures at the end of the season. The club was optimistic that the sponsorship would be extended for another three years. The TAC appears not to share that optimism.

The Richmond board met AFL heavies, chief executive Andrew Demetriou and chairman Ron Evans, on Wednesday and discussed the best way forward for the club. The appointment of the new CEO appears a step in the right direction.

http://www.theaustralian.news.com.au/common/story_page/0,5744,9876048%255E12270,00.html
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