2014 AGM Minutes

MINUTES AGM GRFC held in Trumper Pavilion, Chatswood Oval


held in

Trumper Pavilion, Chatswood Oval

10 December 2014

Meeting commenced at 18.40


Mike Brown, Beau Wilson, Peter Hearl, Bernie Rorke, Geoff Townsend, Will Shirvington, Peter Sherwood, Anne Green, Graham Boyle.


As per attendance sheet

Graeme Hearl (“GH”) took over chair of meeting as current President and only nomination for President for 2015

He noted that Annual Report should have been received by all members.

Minutes of last AGM:

Minutes of last AGM 12/2/14 were accepted as accurate. Proposed Ivo Clarke, seconded Brian Shirvington.

President’s Report:

GH referred to the detailed reports contained in the Annual Report and then provided the following updated information.

To summarise the change in Directors during the year, Rob Bruce stepped down due to work and family commitments as of July and Mark Hartill and Beau Wilson have decided not to renominate. Mark Hartill felt he did not have the energy and enthusiasm to continue. He has been Chair of the Finance and Governance committee for last 2 years and made an enormous contribution to the club. Beau also has had significant changes in work and did not feel he has the time to continue in current capacity. It has been invaluable having a current player on the board.

They were all thanked for their work over the last 2 years.

There are three (3) new nominations, Andrew Dainton, Andrew Lennon and Hilton Chapman.

Andrew Lennon is an ex player having played over 300 games for the club and assisted in coaching the colts in 2014.

Andrew Dainton has been involved in the Gordon Juniors for many years and has a son who will be playing Colts in 2015.

Hilton Chapman is the father of a current player and long term member of the club.

Given there are eight (8) positions on the board and seven (7) nominations no vote is required and all candidates were declared elected.


UTS sponsorship has been renewed for 2015 with some ongoing negotiation regarding specifics.

It costs approximately $400,000 to get seven (7) teams on the park and with the ARU reducing their contribution each year it is more and more important to have sponsors. Thanks to all of ours. We always need more, so if anyone knows of any possibilities please let us know.

SAH (“The San”) have also re signed as a sponsor for 2015.


The ABC will no longer be televising the Shute Shield live. There are ongoing negotiations with other providers for 2015, however.


The ARU contribution for 2014 was $28,000, 3 years ago it was $100,000. We do not know what the club will get in 2015.


ARU wish to charge players an individual fee for insurance which will ultimately be more expensive for the clubs. Previously the clubs paid an amount per team. Due to opposition by all the member associations it is likely that the system will revert to the old system.

Club Office Bearers:

Ema Fargas has resigned as of November 30th 2014 in order to gain employment in graphic design which is what her degree is in. She has been an invaluable employee of the club. She attends the general manager meetings, runs the show on Saturdays and makes sure the older members of the club, in particular, are looked after. No doubt, she will be successful in her next position.

Peter Sherwood is also stepping down as Club Secretary. He has also had a long association with the club and has put in a huge amount of work to get the club back on its feet. He had the added commitment of being the MUNH RAYS inaugural General Manager in 2014 which added to his workload.

2014 Season:

Thanks to all the players. Whilst some of the results weren’t what they deserved things are looking up and look positive for 2015.

Colts in 2014 were a very young side, most only U18/19. These players will all be back again and, at present, the club will most likely have three (3) or even four (4) teams playing in 2015.

Thanks must go to Anthony Dempsey who did a wonderful job with recruitment for 2014. The results could have been better, however, the players stuck to it and never gave up.

4th grade struggled with numbers and injuries. Over 60 players played for them including Ian Crothers, David Telfer, Brett Gibson, Mark Philip and Geoff Townsend to ensure not a single game was forfeited. Brendan Donnelly managed to conjure up players as well to have enough on the field each Saturday.

3rd grade had some great wins and close losses. They were affected by the injuries in higher grades.

2nd grade were extremely unlucky not to be in the Grand Final. They played extremely good Rugby all season. They beat Sydney University twice during the season, and had a close loss to Manly to put them out in the qualifying final.

1st Grade improved over the season and were unlucky not to have a few more wins. They were competitive in all but one game. Numerous season ending injuries to forwards in the first 3 games affected their competitiveness.

Signs for 2015 are positive with over 65 players turning up to preseason training already and some new recruits.

Thanks to all the coaching staff. To those not returning thanks for all your efforts and good luck. This included, Tony Dempsey, Neil Tunnah, Brett Gibson, Tony Daly and Euan Clarke.


FOGS without them the club wouldn’t be here. They make a huge contribution across grade and colts. Thanks again.


GRFC had a 25% stake in this new venture. All the member clubs, Gordon, Warringah, North’s and Manly, contributed $30,000. Geoff Townsend was the Head Coach and the team of basically amateurs was in contention for the semi finals until the last game.

Gordon players Tobias Gukibau, Terry Preston, Jack Dempsey, Nik Fraser and Tom Mathews all had game time which is invaluable for them. Mike Brown was the GRFC delegate to the MUNH RAYS Board. Peter Sherwood was the General Manager.


Unfortunately, no one from the FAG Committee is present tonight, so GH indicated the Board members present would do their best to answer any questions.

Phillip Seddon then asked a series of questions.

  1. Why has the club not been audited and is there a plan for this to happen?
    A: We would like to have an audit but the cost was a problem. Usually $5,000 to $10,000. At the last Board meeting a decision was made to get quotes to enable this to occur going forward. Another reason for an audit is so the club meets the requirements of the ASC for a Foundation which is what the club would like to initiate over next 12 months.We have been advised by our accounting advisors an audit is not required due to turn-over and, in any event, not necessary due to costs.
  2. Can the financial statements be right justified not left justified as per normal practice?
    Will pass this on to the new chair of FAG Committee.
  3. Can the reclassification of the Pat Seriser fund be explained?
    A: It was felt that this was an internal loan and in the course of the review of the financials our accountants recommended that this be done.
  4. Subscriptions were difficult to pay via PAYPAL and then the membership cards did not arrive and our names were not at the gate. Can consideration be given to raising the membership fees for 2015 to enable more funds for the club?
    A: This year we are planning to use TRYBOOKING for memberships instead of PAYPAL as there have been multiple complaints. Hopefully, this will enable a more friendly experience. If there are concerns, please contact one of us for assistance.
  5. Can the club consider offering more merchandise for sale?
    A: There are plans for a limited range of club gear, however, this requires an outlay of money up front which the club has not had the pleasure of. Hopefully, this will change soon.

General Business:

Martin Brown proposed that Richard Grant (“RG”) be given Honorary Life Membership of the club. He has played some 150 games and coached probably 350.

Seconded by Nigel Lloyd Thomas

Place on the Agenda for voting at next AGM.

David Bezer asked about real estate sponsorship. He was told that the club is currently in negotiation with a couple of agents. Peter Matthews confirmed negotiations are ongoing.

David Bezer requested that the Honour Boards be updated.

Nigel Lloyd-Thomas commented that he felt the canteen was not at the standard it was in previous years. GH confirmed arrangements for 2015 are yet to be made, so that was something to be taken on board.

Meeting closed at 19.45.