There is a poem that starts out “There was movement at the station……..”, well this one starts with “There was movement at the Reds………”
At 1 pm this afternoon the Queensland Rugby Union announce that it’s CEO of some seven years, Jim Carmichael, will not be looking to extend his contract which expires towards to end of this year. A decision that was apparently reached in December.
“Although in sport, the work is never completed, I was satisfied with the transformation and reform we have put in place not only for Rugby in Queensland but also for the influence we have been able to have on the national and international strategy for the code.
Therefore, I came to a decision last year that it was time for me pursue another major challenge in my career and the QRU Board has been aware of my thinking since before the Christmas break.”
When Mr Carmichael was appointed in 2009 there was a sigh of relief around the traps that the appointment actually came from outside the organization. Coming with extensive experience in AFL it was expected that he would be able to make the changes that were necessary at the time to bring the QRU and the Reds back to the pinnacle of the sport in Australia. Despite what the last 12 months of his tenure might indicate, there were certainly a lot of changes and most of them were good.
In the words of new QRU chairman Damien Frawley :
“When Jim arrived at Ballymore from Melbourne in 2009 there was huge uncertainty around the game and this organisation. The successes of the QRU’s Future Generation Strategy, which delivered growth and sustainability to the code in Queensland between 2010-2015 under a ‘one economy philosophy’, was an important milestone for the code in Queensland. I look forward to working with Jim as we continue to consolidate and also make the necessary transitions ahead of 2017.”
Not sure about the rest of the Red’s supporters on here, but I can remember the dark days of pre 2009 and I for one would like to thank Jim for his contribution and wish him luck with his next move in the business world. You can not deny that over the years of his tenure he has had to deal with a few problems that I am sure he would rather not have.
For his part, Mr Carmichael got his thank yous out early.
“I’d particularly like to thank our recently retired Chairman Rod McCall, without whose friendship, vision, counsel and drive we could never have achieved so much. I’m also looking forward to continuing the strong relationship with our Chairman Damien Frawley this year. Damien has been on our Board since 2013 and has been incredibly supportive and understanding of my decision, as has the Board, which has stood squarely behind the QRU executive. I’d also like to thank the wide Queensland Rugby stakeholder base for their support during the years of major and often difficult change and reform.”
So, in the last month the QRU has lost it’s Chairman and Head Coach and the CEO has been planning for his retirement. Where does that leave the organisation and who is next?
From my point of view, there is now a huge opportunity for change and I hope that the QRU is sensible about the direction it takes and the people that it needs to go down the rocky path that we are all aware is ahead of us. I think that there are a few more board and executive positions that need to be cleared to allow for some fresh perspectives and new ideas to come into the organisation. I also hope that the QRU is serious about the search for our new head coach and CEO, and that said searches actually make to out of the Ballymore backrooms.
If all else fails the light switch is on the left as you leave. Who ever is last.