President's Message

Message from the President

Those of you around the Club would have noticed that a fair bit of activity has been happening here at Westies over the last couple of months. Hisense Stadium hosted the SANFL Junior Finals, Amateur Football League Finals, various outside events and functions which has resulted in some busy and fun days. The Melbourne Cup events were well attended as have been the very popular Chew the Fat lunches. The positive feedback is heartening and the Committee are already planning for speakers for 2024.

Training for all teams has commenced and the majority of assistant roles have been filled. We are feeling optimistic about the number of re-signings to date, the quality of new players who will join the Bloods, and overall, we are pretty excited about Season 2024 for both our Women and Mens’ teams. Adam Harlett’s contract has been extended until 2025 which brings further stability to our Club.

Last week, a large number of the West Adelaide community farewelled Luke Jamieson, a popular and completely dedicated supporter. It was touching to see so many people come back to the Club to celebrate his life and put their arms around the family. On behalf of the Bloods community, we also extended our condolences to the family of one of our former Junior Players; Charlie Stevens who tragically passed last weekend.

We have been busy behind the scenes too. Memberships for 2024 are now open, our Sponsors are being locked in, with many opting for longer term contracts and pledging increased support, for which we are very grateful for. Our AGM will be held on Wednesday January 31st 2024. Notices will be distributed across our website, social media platforms and The Advertiser. Further information is listed below.

In May this year, I accepted the Boards offer to complete Murray Forbes presidency until this next AGM, at which time I said I would decide whether to re-nominate for the role. I would like to thank the then outgoing President Murray Forbes for his unwavering commitment to the Club and the efforts he, and retiring, Finance Director Mark Goddard gave to West Adelaide, our players and Members.

Unfortunately, I have decided that I will not seek to nominate for the Presidency of the Football Club past the AGM for 2 reasons; firstly, my work as a sole professional makes it difficult to commit to the time required to fulfil the role, and secondly, for personal reasons that require my attention over the longer term.

I have enjoyed my role for during the last nine months I have been President, -working with the people that do so much for our club. As you know we have many challenges and it requires someone that can afford the time and attention the club needs.

I have offered to continue as the lead and assist the Club in the major re-development of Richmond Oval that is on the West Torrens Council agenda in the near future and to assist in other associated projects.

During this short period we have reviewed the Strategic Plan and will release it to the members shortly This plan will outline the direction the Club will take in 2024 and beyond. Our football plan has begun to demonstrate results on field and our retention of key players supports our direction. Financially, we are working to build a model that reflects a sustainable approach to the way we do business, cater for our Members and sponsors, as well as having the flexibility to attract key players to our Club.

I would like to thank the Board, Conny and the administration for their support and wish the coaches, players and volunteers throughout the club for the 2024 season a successful season.

While I will not be continuing as President, I have over 45 years involvement at West Adelaide and will keep supporting the Club and its’ Community from the sidelines to assist in the redevelopment of Richmond Oval, and any other areas that I can contribute towards.

My passion for West Adelaide has never wavered, and would like to thank our entire Community that shares my enthusiasm in making this Club a proud and successful participant in the SANFL.

John Kantalaftas