Getting on board

Recently elected Dons Trust Board member Colin Dipple reflects on his first two months in the role.

In December I was delighted to find out that I had been successful in my campaign to get elected to the Dons Trust Board (DTB) – and I would like to thank everyone who voted for me. I feel I can be a great asset to the club at a time when there are many massive decisions to be made about the new stadium and planning how our organisation evolves.

Since my election I have attended half a dozen meetings – both regular DTB meetings and extra meetings on finance and the legalities of the club’s relocation. These meetings have been very informative and also reassuring. The experts we have appointed, such as architects and lawyers, are not only the best, but they also have the club’s interests at heart. As a club we can rest assured that these guys – along with Erik – will bring us ‘home’ safely and carefully.

I have also done two matchday stints at the Dons Trust kiosk. One thing we want to do with the kiosk is to get a PC operating in it. This will enable the DTB members who are in it to instantly search for membership details if a member wants to make sure that their contact details, for example, are up to date. It will also make it much easier to collate any enquiries that are made.

Regarding the DTB’s composition, I can say with confidence that the mix of personalities and the combined skillset are fantastic at the moment. There are many different projects and issues that the DTB is currently dealing with, so the diversity of the Board members is a real advantage here. I like the fact that there are different viewpoints from the Board members as this means all points of view are brought to the table.

Regarding the oversight of the new stadium by the DTB, I feel the timing for me becoming a Board member couldn’t have been better. My company Chemflow was involved with many of the projects at the Olympic Stadium. We also worked on the Velodrome and Stratford International station, and we were involved with the redevelopment of Twickenham Stadium. This experience will give myself and the DTB a very good perspective when overseeing the new stadium.

At the same time, the DTB has to make sure it does not take its eye off its more routine day-to-day duties. The Board has just held a meeting about what its objectives should be this year, and how it is going to achieve them. We have also got to prioritise these. We will be looking at which DTB member’s skills and personalities best suit the projects they will be involved with or oversee.

I have been very surprised at how much work the DTB members do behind the scenes. Even though the minutes and activity forms are published online, I do wonder whether Trust members are aware that they can view them. I hope that more information regarding this will be published, and hopefully on this page, in the near future.

It would be great for more fans to become part of the Dons Trust and to be able to put their views or questions to the Board. We are a fans-owned club, so what better way to be part of it than to join up? Fans who want to hear or see what the DTB is implementing, or trying to, should attend the next SGM in April. This will also give fans who are not yet Trust members the chance to meet the Board members and hear how they represent both them and the club.

I hope this brief insight into what the Board does has been useful. Thanks for your support.


This article originally appeared in the matchday programme for the game against Accrington Stanley played on March 5, 2016.