Vicsport Board

Ron Gauci – Chairman

Ron has developed a reputation as a dynamic and inspirational transformation specialist taking on some of the most difficult challenges. During a diverse executive career, he has helped organisations leverage their assets, adapt to change and disruptive competition across multiple industries and sectors. His experience includes the iconic Federation Square, Melbourne Polytechnic (formerly NMIT), the Melbourne Storm Rugby League Club post the now infamous salary cap rorting scandal and the Aust/NZ operations of the US based global technology company Verizon Business. Ron is currently CEO of the Australian Information Industry Association.

With significant experience in the global technology and innovation industry, he has held senior leadership and executive roles in ASX & NYSE listed, global multinational, joint venture and government organisations such as Microsoft, Telstra and IBM, as well as directorships in several organisations. He is currently Chairman of Vicsport, Brad Teal Real Estate and sits on several other boards. He also provides coaching services to business executives and is described as an inspirational keynote speaker. His association with sport has included non-executive and advisory positions with a broad range of sporting organisations across several codes.

Ron is a Graduate of AICD and a Fellow of the Australian Institute of Management. He is also a former Director on the Board and Victorian Chairman of the Australian Information Industry Association (AIIA), a former member of the International CEO Forum and held a position on the Board of Governors for the American Chamber of Commerce (AMCHAM).

Ron is married with five children and five grandchildren. He has a long history of active involvement in sport, as well as a keen passion for golf and music which includes being a member of the executive covers band Big Kahuna.


Margot Foster AM

Margot Foster is a lawyer by profession with over 25 years experience in sports administration. She has been a member of the Vicsport Board since 2008 and was Chairman from February 2013 until December 2017. She has held many Board and committee positions in sport with a variety of organisations including the Australian Olympic Committee, Melbourne’s 1996 Olympic Bid Committee, Rowing Australia, Rowing Victoria, Melbourne University Boat Club, Australian & New Zealand Sports Law Association, the inaugural Melbourne (now Victorian) Major Events Company, Womensport Victoria (which she founded) and Womensport Australia, Melbourne and many others.

Margot has been a Board member of the Australian Sports Commission and the New Zealand equivalent, SPARC.

Margot has also been involved in a variety of other non-sport bodies including National Parks Advisory Council, Victorian Women’s Consultative Council, Presbyterian Ladies’ College School Council, Trinity College Board of management at the University of Melbourne and the Victorian Women’s Trust.

Presently Margot serves on the Boards of Vicsport, VicHealth, Women of the Melbourne Cricket Club (WOMCC), Olympians Club of Victoria, and the finance and risk committee of Australian University Sport. She is also President of the Melbourne University Sports Association. Margot has been a mentor and advisor to many women in sport and hosts a regular networking lunch for women working in the sports industry.

Margot represented Australia at the Los Angeles Olympic Games in 1984 in the women’s coxed four rowing event winning a bronze medal, and at the 1986 Commonwealth Games in Edinburgh winning gold in the women’s eights. She also competed in several rowing world championships.


Derek O'Leary

Derek has previously been CEO of Badminton Australia and Diving Victoria, and prior to that, Interim CEO at Equestrian Victoria, and as such has considerable experience and relationships within the Victorian sports landscape.

Having worked in entrepreneurial roles in the private sector prior to NFP sports, Derek brings a strong commercial focus on helping sports become more professional and profitable whilst delivering improved services back to their membership base.

Derek’s prior Board roles include Equestrian Victoria, and Chair of the National Equestrian Centre, and as such also has experience in Sports facilities, and a strong understanding of the challenges faced by many sports due to the lack of, or inadequate facilities currently on offer, and is highly motivated within his role at Vicsport to assist sports lobby for improved facilities across the state.
Derek was elected to the Vicsport Board in November 2017.


Susan Smith

Susan has over 30 years of experience in executive and non-executive roles and has previously been appointed by the Federal Government to a number of international and domestic strategy committees within a number of sectors, but primarily in the safety critical and politically sensitive aviation industry.

Susan presently serves on the Board of Swimming Victoria and has been a member of other non-sporting boards including Aspergers Victoria. Prior to 2000 Susan was involved in the organisation for the Sydney Olympics.

Susan is an avid sports participant, in her younger years competing in swimming at the national level and as an Australian representative at international basketball tournaments. She currently participates in sailing, skiing and tennis.

Susan has a Masters of Business Administration and is a Graduate of the Australian Institute of Company Directors.

Susan’ s motivation for joining the Board of Vicsport is twofold - to ensure that the value and importance the community places on participation in sport is accurately reflected in Victoria’s sporting policy, and to appropriately support associations.


Tim Large

Tim has over 30 years of experience in executive and non-executive roles across Asia and Australia encompassing finance, strategic and commercial leadership roles. Tim is a Chartered Accountant and a Graduate of the Australian Institute of Company Directors.

Tim joined the Vicsport Board as Chairman of the Finance, Risk and Audit Committee and therefore is also an ex-officio Director of Vicsport.

Being an avid follower of most sports and an enthusiastic participant for many years, Tim's appointment to the Vicsport Board is a great opportunity for him to give back to the community by making a significant contribution to the sporting sector.


Catherine Harding

Catherine is a qualified lawyer with over 15 years’ experience working across the government, non-profit and private sectors with a focus on social policy and has a wealth of experience in relevant areas including governance, strategy, women's health and family violence, and health and nutrition.

Catherine has served on the board of Vicsport since 2018, and the board of Women's Health West, since 2014, including a term as Deputy Chair, and has sat on a range of sub-committees for both boards.

Catherine is currently an Associate Director in KPMG’s Advisory Division where she works with government and non-government agencies to support them in the delivery of projects which focus on strategy and governance. Having worked in policy and strategy roles in state and federal public sectors, Catherine has a deep knowledge of government processes and the policy development framework, as well as strong experience in the design, delivery and evaluation of programs and projects.

Catherine holds a Masters in Public and International Law from the University of Melbourne in addition to a Bachelor of Arts, majoring in French and Italian, and a Bachelor of Law with Honours from the University of Sydney. She is an accredited Investment Logic Mapping facilitator under the Victorian Government's Investment Management Standard.


Simon Brookhouse

Simon has recently been appointed General Manager of Golf Operations at Golf Australia. Simon is responsible for all national golf events, rules and handicapping, special projects and state operations. Prior to this, Simon was the CEO of Golf Victoria and played a pivotal role in developing and delivering a strong Strategic Plan and growth of the Victorian Open.

With a keen interest in sport, Simon has served on the board of numerous sporting associations including basketball and cricket. Prior to working in the sporting industry, Simon held various senior roles in corporate banking spanning 15 years. Simon’s qualifications include: Master of Business Administration, Bachelor of Business and Graduate, Diploma of Applied Finance and Investment.


Tanya Gallina

Tanya is currently General Manager, Strategic Projects at the Hawthorn Football Club with nearly 20 years’ experience across the Australian sporting landscape. Tanya’s current role is to manage the continual integration, participation and development of women’s football, investigate and manage new business ventures and support partnerships with alternate sports inclusive of netball, basketball and AFL wheelchair.

A current board member at the Box Hill Football Club, Tanya brings a wealth of knowledge and experience across many portfolios in sports administration intertwined with a commitment to lead and deliver inclusive programs that support participation, career pathways and mentorship of female sport administrators and athletes.

Tanya’s holds a Bachelor of Arts (Majors in Media & Marketing), a Key Executives Business course at Harvard Business School and AFL Executive Leadership program.


Peter Filopoulos

Peter has 25 years of highly successful experience as an accomplished senior C-Suite executive in sports administration with some of Australia’s most iconic sports and entertainment brands.

Peter’s current role is Chief Executive Officer of Football Victoria (FV) overseeing the state’s 400,000 strong organised participation base across both Men, Women, Boys and Girls of all abilities across over 360 clubs.

Since commencing in the role at Football Victoria, Peter has made significant progress in developing a new four year strategic plan (FootbALLways).

He has overseen a 24% rise in participation in 2018 and 10% in 2019, a successful facilities and advocacy strategy which has unlocked over $180M in facilities funding (from all levels of Government) for the community to help address the chronic underinvestment in the sport and the facilities gap football is currently facing and will continue to face with the need of 420 full size equivalent pitches required by 2026 to be able to keep up with participation increases and population growth.

Prior to joining FV, Peter had a successful three years as Chief Executive Officer at the Perth Glory Football Club, leading the club out of the salary cap saga that plagued them in 2014/15 Hyundai A-League season.

In this role, Peter played a critical role in the business transformation of the club and developing and implementing a new strategic plan, The Perth Glory Way, driving the club in a new and exciting direction which lead to significant improvements in the club’s operations and commercial achievements.

During his term, Perth Glory was also accredited as an FFA two-star academy incorporating a development pathway from 12 years of age upwards. Peter has developed a strong reputation as a senior sports and entertainment business transformational leader with a demonstrable history of major accomplishments in all his roles as the strategic, marketing and commercial lead across a variety of Australian iconic high-performance sports brands.

This includes eight (8) years with AFL clubs Hawthorn Football Club and North Melbourne Football Club, seven years with the world-class Etihad Stadium located in Melbourne and 18 months National Sporting Organisation, Swimming Australia (Australian Dolphins Swim Team).

Peter is married to Mary and has two children, George and Jonathan.


Jamie Parsons

Jamie is an engaging and inclusive leader who has been involved in and overseen the development and growth of high profile organisations throughout his career.

Through his energetic and collaborative leadership style, Jamie has demonstrated an outstanding capability to lead and facilitate the development of strategic priorities and implement these to ensure successful operational outcomes in the sport, entertainment, recreation, tourism and cultural sectors.

Jamie is able to develop and build high performing teams of people to deliver organisational strategic priorities through valuing and engaging all key people involved including customers, participants, members of boards, paid staff, volunteers, contractors, partners and other key stakeholders.

In the sport, entertainment and recreation sector, Jamie has held senior roles at Gymnastics Victoria, Netball Australia, the World Swimming Championships and Deaflympics Games. As a director, Jamie has held all positions on the Boards of Football Federation Victoria, Little Athletics Victoria and Jamie currently holds the position of President of Sport4all Foundation - an international sports charity organisation support underprivileged communities overseas.

In the tourism and cultural sector Jamie has worked in senior roles in a number of large scale organisations with significant new building works including Melbourne's Shrine of Remembrance, Museums Victoria and at Melbourne's Federation Square through the Australian Centre for the Moving Image.

Currently Jamie is a member of the Australian Marketing Institute, Australia New Zealand Sports Law Association (ANZSLA), the Risk Management Institute of Australasia (RMIA), Victoria University Alumni and is a 30+ year member of AFL team the Western Bulldogs.

Jamie is passionate about bringing people together through sport, leisure, culture and physical activity to find new and innovative ways to support all in our community live healthy and productive lives.


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