Your Club Update December 2023 | Tasmanian Football Club

Your Club Update December 2023

21 December 2023

Dear Believer,

2023….the year Tasmania won the right to enter the AFL and AFLW.

It has indeed been a significant year for the establishment of our Club.

  • Wednesday May 3rd – AFL announces Tasmania as the 19th member of the AFL and AFLW competitions.
  • Friday July 7th – Grant O’Brien named as inaugural Chair of the Tasmania Football Club.
  • Wednesday September 13th – Tasmania Football Club Board announced.
  • Wednesday September 27th – Launch of Believer from the Beginning merchandise.
  • Tuesday November 14th – AFL Announce $500kpa investment into talent pathways.
  • Thursday December 14th – Community consultation commences led by Jack Riewoldt.

It is hard to believe that we are rapidly approaching the end of the year. As I look back on the last few months, I am proud of the progress that we have made to bring the Tasmania Football Club (TFC) to life.

We have another key element of our establishment to share with you today. To support the formation phase of our Club, the Board identified the need for an Executive lead of the Club for the period leading through to the appointment of the Club’s inaugural Chief Executive (planned for early 2025). This establishment Executive role will be full-time and based in Hobart to work with key stakeholders in the delivering the formation workstreams for our Club. It was deemed to be financially frugal and critical to ensuring the continuity of the work already underway that the Executive lead be appointed from within the Tasmania Football Club Board itself. This role of Executive Director will play an important part in ensuring the planned smooth transition to the appointment of the Club’s inaugural Chief Executive in early 2025. Following the internal process, the Board ratified the appointment of Kath McCann as it’s Executive Director for a 2-year period. We are thrilled that Kath has agreed to take on this role and feel very confident that it will be a critical part of us delivering on our Establishment plans.

We were so thrilled to see that Mackenzie Ford, Brooke Barwick and Georgia Clark were selected in the recent AFLW Draft, further confirmation that football is on the rise in Tasmania. We are sure they will do their state proud. We cannot wait to one day soon be recruiting for Tasmania’s own AFLW team.

Last week, the TFC Board had the great pleasure of being on the North West coast of Tasmania for Board meeting number 4. Whilst we were on the coast, we attended Devils training at Dial Park. It was brilliant to see our young athletes training together at such a central facility. We also had a full tour of Dial Park and hosted a dinner with local football administrators. For the Board it was a great opportunity to see and learn what is happening in the region and to speak directly to those working hard on the ground to administer football. We are grateful for the hospitality shown to us during our stay, all the Directors loved their visit to the coast.

Our Board meeting last week was another step forward for the Club. Key items for us at this meeting included approval of our operating budget and a comprehensive update on our fan engagement and infrastructure work streams. We are confident that we will be launching the club and membership in March 2024 as we have previously committed.

There has been a lot of discussion in the public domain around the location of our Training and Administration facility. This facility is a crucial piece of infrastructure for our Club, and we are delighted by the support and enthusiasm from local government and communities in attracting this infrastructure to their municipalities. The passion for this development reflects the known value that this facility will create for the local economy and community in which it is located. We are looking forward to continuing to progress this project over the coming weeks.

The Put Your Say into Play community events have commenced. These events are so important for us to be able to hear from the Tasmanian community as we build the Fabric of the Club. We kicked off in Queenstown last Thursday, followed by Wynyard Friday and Devonport on Saturday. We partnered with AFL Tasmania to also host a clinic in Devonport with nearly 100 of our future stars in attendance. The contribution from the community in sharing their stories with our team has been phenomenal. We are looking forward to the next six sessions scheduled for January. I know that Jack and Abbey would be keen to see as many of you as possible at the next round of events. Click here to register for these events.

In closing, I want to thank you all for your support and enthusiasm for the Club in 2023. The next 12 months will be huge for us, and I am looking forward to working with Tasmanians on and off the island to create a Club that we are all proud of. For those that are celebrating this festive season, we wish you a safe and happy break and look forward to connecting with you again in 2024.

All the best,

Grant O'Brien,