Veteran football administrator Geoff Walsh has returned to the game in a permanent role after being hired as St Kilda’s new football manager.
Ironically, the panel that oversaw the interview process for the role included former North Melbourne coach David Noble, who was sacked by the Kangaroos as part of Walsh’s review of their football department.
Walsh brings with him a wealth of experience, having spent 17 years across two stints at North Melbourne, including five as CEO, and 12 years across two stints at Collingwood as the Magpies football boss.
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He also assisted with the review of Carlton’s football department last year.
Walsh replaces Simon Lethlean who became the Saints’ CEO last month.
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“I’m excited to be joining the St Kilda Football Club in what will be its 150th year,” Walsh said.
“I respect the club’s decision to embark on a comprehensive review and I will work closely with (president) Andrew Bassat and Simon Lethlean to ensure that we successfully implement the necessary changes.
“There is plenty of talent and potential within the list and I look forward to working closely with the whole football program as we look to further unlock this.”
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Lethlean said the club was “thrilled” to have appointed Walsh.
“It was made quite clear early in our review process, which is currently being finalised, that a key senior leader was required to help lead the men’s program and steward the implementation of the actions that will be required from the findings of the football review,” Lethlean said.
“Rather than waiting for that process to conclude, we set out to identify the best possible candidate and we are confident we have secured that with Geoff.
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“Geoff holds extensive senior experience across a number of clubs and throughout his time he has been able to steer them to success with his firm but decisive nature.
“Of course, his resume speaks for itself, but what is also clear is Geoff’s hunger to help the club build and improve, and that is exactly what we intend to do.
“As we have said around the review process, we are not willing to compromise on our ambitions and we believe Geoff’s appointment will be a key driver in getting us there.”