We conducted our 2023 NHFC Annual General Meeting at the social club on 14 December.
The event was well attended and following its conclusion there was a great opportunity to socialize with fellow Demons. Jane Omant and members of the Omant family were in attendance to award the NHFC Club Person of the Year Award – The David Omant Shield – to 2023 recipient, Daniel Gerrard.
The report tabled to the meeting by Club President, Dave Kilpatrick, is provided below for your information.
Dear Members, Supporters, Players and Stakeholders,
As we reflect on the events of the past year, I am pleased to present the End of Year Report for the North Hobart Football Club. The 2023 season has been one marked by remarkable achievements, community engagement, and strategic advancements that have positioned our club for sustained success in the years to come.
The highlight of the year undoubtedly lies in the success of our Women’s team, securing the premiership for the second consecutive year under the exceptional guidance of Head Coach Darren McConnon. Their dedication and hard work have truly set a standard for excellence within the club.
The Men’s Development League also celebrated success, clinching the premiership under the leadership of playing coach Brad Tilbury. That was our most recent men’s premiership in 20 years. Additionally, our Under 18s made their mark by reaching the finals, showcasing the promising talent within our ranks. Furthermore, the Men’s Seniors achieved a milestone by winning twice as many games as in the previous two years, signaling a positive trajectory for the club.
Membership and Sponsorship:
Our club has experienced significant growth in both membership and player sponsorships, a testament to the enduring support of our community. Despite economic challenges, corporate sponsorship revenue has been maintained at previous year levels, showcasing the resilience of our partnerships and the commitment of our sponsors. We thank our many sponsors for their continued support.
Volunteer Recognition and Board Initiatives:
Our volunteers have been the backbone of our success, dedicating their time and effort to ensure the smooth functioning of the club. The Board of Directors has taken proactive measures to reward and recognize their invaluable contributions, acknowledging that our success is a collective effort.
Thanks to our Volunteer Team Leaders:
We are greatly appreciative of Chris Smith, Mandy Jenkins, Wayne Flanagan, Catherine Sandric, Paul Curtain and Nigel Reid in their roles as volunteer team leaders. We also acknowledge the significant contribution of our footy game day support staff.
A special thank you to Peter Fisher for the work he did in revamping our Web Site and his ongoing work as editor and publisher of our newsletter. We also thank Fletcher Keeling and Mark Stewart for their outstanding work managing our Facebook page.
The North Hobart Football Club was recently honored with a national Good Sports award for Excellence in Mental Health and Wellbeing. This recognition underscores our commitment to creating a positive and supportive environment for all community. It is the result of the leadership in this area by our Director Rick Tipping over the past 3 years.
In alignment with our commitment to inclusion, player payments were introduced in the senior women’s program, bringing us in line with other SFLW Division 1 teams.
A significant refreshment of the Hisense Room in the Plaister stand has been completed, creating an enhanced facility that not only generates additional revenue for the club but also provides more opportunities to engage the wider community in club activities and at our Oval. We thank Shane Arnol, Paul Curtain and Peter Fisher for their voluntary work on this project.
We value our strong partnerships with North Hobart Junior Football Club and Sandy Bay JFC. This year we delivered the equivalent of more than 100 days of junior coaching programs including Auskick, school clinics, coaching of junior club teams, coach education and our highly successful North Hobart Youth Footy Academy. Along with more than 20 senior player volunteers our delivery of junior programs also extended to employing Footy Academy and school clinic coaches and a part time Junior Development Coordinator at the club.
UTAS Scholarship and Brewer Scholarships:
This year, we proudly reintroduced the North Hobart UTAS scholarship, an initiative aimed at providing educational support to a new recruit residing outside of Hobart. The scholarship includes assistance for relocation to Hobart, ensuring that talented individuals have the opportunity to join our club and contribute to our success. The UTAS scholarship is in addition to our Brewer Scholarships, which are offered to existing club players to further their academic and skills training pursuits.
We are excited to announce that we have selected the UTAS scholarship winner. Felix Mole has been awarded the 2024 North Hobart UTAS Scholarship and will join the Demons in January, along with commencing studies in Medicine at UTAS. This initiative reflects our commitment to nurturing talent both on and off the field, fostering a culture of continuous growth and development.
Strategic Focus and Governance:
This year, our Board of Directors has worked diligently to strengthen governance and planning practices, with a clear focus on defining our club’s purpose and strategic goals. Looking ahead, our major goal is to win a Senior Men’s premiership by 2025, and we are committed to the strategic initiatives required to achieve this milestone.
I am pleased to report that the North Hobart Football Club finished the financial year with a profit. This strong financial position adds to our reserves, ensuring the sustainability and growth of our club. Our Tridents coterie group also provides significant financial assistance to our club of which we are very grateful.
Acknowledgment of Board Members:
I extend my heartfelt thanks to the esteemed members of our Board, each of whom has played a crucial role in the club’s achievements. Special appreciation goes to Vice Presidents Josh Lutrell and Luke Curtain, Directors Catherine Sandric, Fiona Felmingham, Sophia Bellears, Rick Tipping, Mark Stewart, Jonathan Rogers, and Brandon Edmondson. Your dedication and commitment are the driving forces behind our success, and I look forward to tackling the challenges ahead with this outstanding team.
A special moment of gratitude is reserved for our retiring Directors, Fiona Felmingham and Catherine Sandric. Fiona, as the Director of Finances for the past 4 years, has steered us to the strong financial position we enjoy today. Her expertise and commitment have been invaluable. Catherine Sandric, during her 3-year tenure, has made significant contributions to the organization of key events and the development of our strong and inclusive club culture. We owe them a debt of gratitude for their outstanding service.
Welcome to New Board Members:
I am pleased to announce the addition of three new members to our Board, each bringing unique skills and perspectives that will contribute to the continued success of the North Hobart Football Club. We extend a warm welcome to:
• Peter White, Director of Finance: Peter brings a wealth of financial expertise to the Board, and we look forward to leveraging his skills as we navigate the financial challenges ahead.
• Amy Dunham, Assistant Director Women’s Football: Amy’s passion for women’s football and her experience will be invaluable as we continue to strengthen and grow our women’s program.
• Georgina Vernon, Director for Club Culture and Engagement: Georgina’s commitment to fostering a strong and inclusive club culture aligns with our values. Her role will be instrumental in building meaningful connections within our community.
Appreciation for General Manager:
I would like to express my appreciation to our General Manager, Paul Curtain, whose leadership and dedication are integral to the day-to-day operations of the club. Paul’s commitment ensures the smooth functioning of the club and contributes significantly to our continued success.
Our Coaches Leading the Change
Our team coaches have led a cultural change at the club this year. We are positive and proud of our collective achievements. Our players believe in themselves and we have built the foundations to be competitive at all levels. We thank Besty, Tilbs, Doug, Cal, Sammy, Ferge, Kevin, Scott, Rocket, Goose, Jim, Chelsea, Laura, Claire and Harry for their leadership this year.
Strategic Goals and Future Outlook:
In looking ahead, we recognize that next year marks the final year of the TSL. Our aspirations are high, and we plan to play finals in the last season of this competition. Looking further, in 2025, we will transition to a 6-team competition based in Hobart, and substantial work lies ahead to prepare for this change.
During this transition, we will place a strong emphasis on enhancing the club member experience to ensure our club remains relevant and to build new ways to engage the wider community in positive activities at our club.
Our strategic goals 2023 -2025 are crystal clear, serving as a roadmap for our future success:
• A Senior Men’s and Women’s Premiership by 2025,
• 10 Male and 10 Female Players in Representative Teams Each Year
• 100 Days of Junior Development Support each year
• 1,000 Members by 2025
• 10,000 Volunteer Hours Each Year
• $100,000 Sponsorship Dollars Annually
These goals not only embody our commitment to on-field success but also emphasize our dedication to community engagement, development, and sustainable growth.
As we navigate these pivotal moments in our club’s history, the North Hobart Football Club remains steadfast in its commitment to excellence. With the support of our dedicated members, players sponsors, volunteers, and the broader community, we are confident in achieving our collective vision.
The achievements of the past year are a testament to the collective efforts of our players, coaches, volunteers, sponsors, and the broader community. The North Hobart Football Club is well-positioned for continued success, and we look forward to the exciting challenges and opportunities that the upcoming year will bring.
Challenges and Future Initiatives:
As we celebrate our successes, it is crucial to acknowledge the challenges that lie ahead. The North Hobart Football Club is entering a transformative phase as we transition to the new 6-team premier league competition. Alongside this shift comes the cessation of grant funding from AFL Tasmania. This poses a unique challenge that necessitates the development of a new business and operational model to secure the club’s financial viability.
The Board recognizes that navigating this transition will be a complex task, and ensuring the sustainability of the club requires a comprehensive and strategic approach. Over the next 12 months, our primary focus will be on developing innovative solutions and robust strategies that align with the evolving landscape of Australian rules football. This period of transition is not only an opportunity for growth but also a test of our resilience and adaptability.
Thank you for your unwavering support. We will continue to ensure our communications are frequent, open and honest as we work together as members of our great footy club to ensure we prosper in the future.
President, North Hobart Football Club
Image below: NHFC’s current strategic goals for 2023 – 2025