Hawthorn Football Club President Jeff Kennett has penned the below letter to members...


Dear Members,

Well it has been an exciting few weeks.

I suppose the most moving moment has been the decision of Jarryd Roughead to hang up his boots at the end of this season.

Roughy will be sadly missed. But in all sports, there is a natural time when men and women have to hand their batons to the next generation of competitors and gladiators.

Roughy finishes his career on an absolute high. How many AFL players finish their career without ever having once saluted on Grand Final day? The vast majority!

Roughy however, retires with four Premiership medals around his neck; 2008, 2013, 2014 and 2015.

Jarryd also completes his playing career having been selected by his playing colleagues and the club’s Board and administration to captain the club in 2017 and 2018. Can there be any greater accolade than to captain our great club?

Jarryd was drafted in 2004, meaning he has been in our colours for 15 years, played 282 games so far and kicked 572 goals.

Jarryd brought his home-spun country values to our club which again reinforced the family values that are the core of Hawthorn.

It has been a remarkable career. We thank Jarryd, his wife Sarah and his family for sharing him with us for such a long period.

We thank Jarryd for his contribution and leadership at Hawthorn.

There will be many occasions on which to salute Jarryd Roughead starting this Sunday at Marvel Stadium when Jarryd will play his last home game in Melbourne in the brown and gold.

I hope as many members as possible can attend to give Roughy the recognition he deserves.

Read: Social media's reaction to Roughy's retirement

In other news, we also welcome a new Board Member to our ranks this month.

I am pleased to announce that Anne-Marie Pellizzer has been appointed to the Hawthorn Board and will take her place from our next Board meeting on Monday.

Anne-Marie will be known to many members as a long time Hawthorn supporter, member of the Inner Hawks and very generous financial supporter of the club’s endeavours.

Anne-Marie is a Physician by profession with over 30 years of experience. She will be taking the Board position recently vacated by Professor Andrew Kaye.

It has always been my practice where possible to appoint people to your Board who have specific skills and who will help us deliver the good governance that is the first priority of your Board.

I recognised some years ago the importance of having a medical person on the Board to help us better understand medical and related issues, not just for our players but for all those we employ.

Andrew Kaye was the first such appointment and Anne-Marie his successor.

Anne-Marie also has a long understanding of the history of the club and as well as keeping us informed on medical issues and acting as a conduit between our medical staff and the Board, she will take over the Board Committee of History and Tradition.

As a small note it was Anne-Marie who under Ian Dicker’s leadership came up with the slogan “Proud, Passionate and Paid-Up”, for which Ian Dicker gave her credit at the recent 1989 Reunion when Ian was presented with his Hall of Fame Membership.

We welcome Anne-Marie to the Board and thank her for her willingness to join our work and journey.

The year has not delivered the conclusion we aimed for, but we should not be disappointed. With two games to go there is still a mathematical chance we could make the eight, but to be honest if you lose too many games early in the season you make it very tough at the business end.

That said, I live in hope and am encouraged by what I have seen among our newer recruits, which I think bodes as very promising for next year.

Clearly the football department has a lot of work to do over the next few weeks in making decisions about our list next year.

Whatever they decide can I remind all members we employ the best people in the competition. Because they are the best, the Board at times challenges their decisions but invariably accepts their recommendations. The coaches’ responsibility and that of your Board is to make the best decisions in the interest of the club and its members.

We do not and cannot operate on an emotional basis, but what is in the best interests of you - our members, our shareholders. To that end we are bound to use our best endeavours and our best collective judgements to advance the story of this great club.

And you must admit our record has been pretty good over the last 15 years. In fact, no club has beaten or come close to our success rate, but within that, we can’t expect to compete for silverware every year.

Finally, to our Tasmanian members. As you know there is a review being conducted under the leadership of Brett Godfrey re the potential viability of a standalone Tasmanian team.

Your CEO Justin Reeves and I have met with the Inquiry and are co-operating with them in their endeavours. We will better be able to consider our future options in Tasmania once that Committee reports.

I just hope whatever its recommendations, that is the end of the debate. The endless ongoing discussions are debilitating and takes everybody’s focus off getting on with the issues we are charged to address.

For now, stay well. Hope to see many of you at Jarryd’s game on Sunday.

Go Hawks

Jeff Kennett