To my friends in the Australian Athletics Family,
Today marks my last day as the President of Athletics Australia, having served the maximum term of nine years as a member of the Board of Directors. I want to take this opportunity to extend my thanks to you all for your support and guidance during my time as President and across my term as a Board Member.
My time on the Athletics Australia Board of Directors has been very rewarding.
I have been fortunate enough to share the successes of our athletes both at home and on the world stage and I have relished the opportunity to work alongside our many stakeholders for the benefit of the vibrant sport of athletics in Australia.
I will leave Athletics Australia knowing that the organisation now is in a considerably better position than when I commenced in the role of President two years ago.
The Board of Directors that remains boasts a sound mix of committed and capable individuals who, together with our highly competent Chief Executive Officer, Phil Jones, his executive management team and their staff, will work tirelessly to ensure that the work we have commenced continues.
Our relationship with the Australian Sports Commission is excellent and has been enhanced by the work of the Athletics Review Monitoring Committee, while the level of engagement and communication with our stakeholders is continuing to improve. The level of participation in all states and territories is increasing and with an Olympic and Paralympic year fast approaching there is great excitement.
Importantly, Athletics Australia is in a very sound financial position with healthy reserves, and for the first time we are engaged in a process that will see athletics in Australia adopt a whole-of-sport approach in planning for the future. In recent months, meetings of stakeholders have been held across Australia to assist this planning process.
I urge all involved to continue down the path on which we have embarked. It is the only way we will ensure the success for our sport that we all seek.
For my part, I will continue to be available to the wonderful sport of athletics in whatever capacity I am able to contribute. I have been involved in the sport for fifty years as an athlete, coach and administrator. It is in my blood and will continue to be so.
I convey my thanks to the entire athletics family including our member associations, athletes, coaches, managers, staff and volunteers for their tireless efforts.
I especially thank the members of the Athletics Australia Board of Directors, past and present, for their enormous and often unheralded contributions. Whilst the task has not always been easy, it has been a pleasure to serve with you all.
Athletics is the purest of sports. It is embedded in Australian society. We have a great and glorious past. Our challenge is to ensure our future is even better.
Best wishes to all.
With kind regards,
DAVID GRACE QC
Athletics Australia President