The following message is from our Chief Executive Colin McGowan:
I’d like to take this time to firstly thank my good friend Ronnie MacDonald, who has stood down as a director of the club. Ronnie was an incredibly important asset to the football club throughout his time here.
Under his tenure we remained in Scotland’s top flight for the longest period in the club’s history. Working alongside myself and the other directors we were also able to vastly reduce the debt which the club found itself in
We have also developed a model which sold players who were developed in our youth academy, James McCarthy, James McArthur, Brian Easton and Scott McMann to name a few. This is a model which the club is known throughout Britain for.
I’d also like to wish him all the very best in the future.
In the interest of communication with our support I’d also like to detail what this means for the club moving forward.
When I arrived at the club in 2002, the club had an incomplete stadium and had to live month-to-month to pay the wages of the playing staff.
I have and never will hide from the fact that there are plenty of good men out there that know a lot more about football than I do. I believe this is a strength, in making this decision, I was able to attract one of the best in Ronnie MacDonald and the club greatly benefitted from this.
During his time Ronnie also built a team of football minded people. Many of which are now major decision makers at the club. With his departure Allan Maitland, Les Gray, George Cairns, Stuart Taylor, Danny Doherty, Bob Hay, John Brown, Seref Zengin and many others will remain.
These men will work together to make decisions which they believe are in the best interest of the football club. As our owner I do not look to overrule this group who know the game inside and out.
These men have learned from a fantastic man in Ronnie MacDonald and I am sure he will be available for advice whenever that is needed.
When Ronnie and I arrived, the club were anguishing close to relegation to the old third division.
Ronnie was in-charge of the football team on the pitch, and I was responsible for the day-to-day running of the stadium and the club’s finances.
My role in ensuring financial stability has not changed. Throughout my time I have worked to ensure that creditors of the club were paid promptly and worked to bring in commercial opportunities for the club.
These opportunities bring in hundreds of thousands of pounds each year to the club. I believe the subject of on the field is well looked after and will continue to be looked after.
The club has an absolutely incredible network of sponsors, many of which have become close friends of mine, many of these choose to support the club because they see the fantastic charity work we do and the work we do in the local community.
In doing this work the club benefits.
The recent fireworks night and gala days which took place raised funds for the Hamilton Academical FC Community Trust. The Community Trust is responsible for funding our youth academy.
The funds raised allow us to continue producing players such as Lewis Smith, Jamie Hamilton and Andrew Ryan who have been fantastic this season. These events clearly benefit the club and will continue to do so.
This season we have managed to raise somewhere in the region of £50,000 from the various events which have taken place.
This work not only benefits the community, but it also benefits the football club. I believe this is a win-win situation.
This work is well supported, and I have been contacted by numerous politicians as they praise the work which we are trying to do here.
In my working week I would say around 10% of my time is deployed in watching football. The rest of my time is spent exploring ways to raise vital funds for Hamilton Accies and the various charity elements which I am involved with.
I’d like to finish this by saying that our board of directors are completely unpaid and will continue to work to the benefit of this club.
As co-owner for a number of years I have played a part in building a fantastic group of people who have the club’s best interests at heart. The board as a group take the decisions and aim to field the best team possible as determined by budgets.
The club will continue to work to support the local community and will do so to the best of our ability.
I look forward to seeing you at Saturday’s match.