Kate Roffey has penned a letter to Melbourne Members ahead of AFLW Round 1 and the AFL Finals.

Dear Members,

What an incredibly exciting time for our club. 

Firstly, I want to take a moment to express my heartfelt gratitude to each and every one of you, our loyal and passionate members. On Monday, we officially cracked the 70,000 membership milestone – so congratulations – I would say Melbourne is now a BIG club! 
We should all feel an immense sense of pride to belong to the Melbourne Football Club. We are in fantastic shape, and it is your loyalty, spirit and unwavering support that has brought us to this point. Together, we are writing a new chapter in the rich history of our club, and I hope that every single one of you feels incredibly proud to belong to this fabulous club.  

Tonight, we will witness an historic occasion as we unveil our maiden AFLW premiership flag, having achieved the ultimate success in Season 7 of the AFL Women’s competition. This win in 2022, on the back of our AFL Men’s Premiership in 2021, makes Melbourne the first club in history since the AFLW competition started – to win both a men’s and a women’s flag.   

Tonight will mark another memorable moment in our club’s history and we look forward to seeing as many of you as possible down at IKON Park. I know our AFLW playing group and coaches are incredibly grateful for all the support you have shown and I encourage all our members and supporters to get behind our women in the red and blue, as they embark on a new season and look to defend our mantle as reigning premiers.  

For our AFL team, next week will mark a third consecutive AFL Finals appearance. Our aim at the start of the season was to finish in the top four and secure a double chance and the team has now done that three years in a row. Melbourne is the only club that has finished in the top four in each of the past three years and that is a significant achievement. It is a testament to the unwavering dedication and hard work of our players, coaches and staff, who continue to show extraordinary commitment to our club.   

I’m incredibly excited to join the Demon faithful at the MCG on Thursday night. I know our players want to see and hear our Demon faithful out in force, filling the stands with red and blue as we set ourselves for a challenging, yet exciting, AFL Finals campaign at the MCG.  

Off the back of their 2022 success, the Casey Demons also start their Premiership defence, securing a spot in the VFL Finals last week. This Saturday, they are set to take the field in a crucial Elimination Final against Footscray. The stakes are high for this game so get down to Box Hill Oval if you can and cheer on our Casey Demons. 

Off the field, as we prepare to cheer on our mighty teams, I also wanted to provide a Board update. I firstly want to express my gratitude and warmest thanks to both Steve Morris and Mohan Jesudason, who will finish as board directors at the end of the season in line with our recently introduced director term limits.  

Steve and Mohan have made significant contributions to the club as directors. Both have served as Club Vice President and as Chairs of Board Committees, with Steve chairing our Investment Committee and Mohan chairing the Nominations and Remuneration Committee. They have provided amazing support to the club and retire at the end of their final terms with our heartfelt thanks. 

I am also pleased to welcome Sarah Robinson and Geoff Porz to the Melbourne Football Club Board.  Sarah and Geoff fill the casual vacancies created by Steve and Mohan and have skill sets in the areas of investment and facility development – both identified as critical to us going forward.   

Sarah Robinson brings to the Board extensive experience as a financial advisor and investment strategist and will be a critical member of our Investment Committee, which has responsibility for guiding our Future Fund investments. Sarah is ranked in the top 100 financial advisors in Australia. Sarah has been a passionate Demons member for over 20 years, and we are thrilled to welcome her.  

Many of you will be familiar with Geoff Porz, who has deep connections to the club as a 40+ year member, Foundation Legend and founding member of the Inner Sanctum. Geoff brings strong knowledge and experience in property, infrastructure and facility development, having developed assets in excess of $1.4 billion.   

The skills and experience that Sarah and Geoff add to the Board will strengthen capability in the management of our Future Fund and in progression of our planned Training and Administration facility, both key strategic pillars of our next phase of growth.  

I would also like to take this opportunity to acknowledge the work of the staff and Executive team at the club. Under the leadership of our CEO Gary Pert, the club continues to excel off the field and the contribution our staff make, in particular outside of regular working hours on weekends and evenings, is the foundation for success. To every person who works or volunteers at our club – thank you! 

But for now, our focus shifts to tonight and the coming men’s finals series. A McClelland Trophy and more Premierships are up for grabs. Here's to an extremely exciting period ahead for our great club. I can’t wait to see what we can achieve over the next few months.  

To every single one of our 70,785 members – thank you for bleeding red and blue.

Let’s Go Dees!