Mark EngelbretsonManifesto Mark Engelbretson

Proposers: Peter Godfrey and David King

Mark Engelbretson

I have long had an association with supporting Wimbledon FC/AFC Wimbledon along with a general love of the beautiful game, which started way back in 1979 as a 4 year old. I regularly started to watch Wimbledon play at Plough Lane when we were promoted from Division 4 & began our meteoric rise to division 1. I had my first season ticket in division 3, I was there to witness us get promoted to division 1 and then saw us win the FA Cup at Wembley. During my mid teens I sold programmes at Plough Lane and helped carry in the players kit bags from their cars to the dressing rooms on match days. As a teen I also qualified as a football referee but it wasn’t until we formed AFC Wimbledon that I took this seriously. I joined the Combined Counties League as a match official and as AFC Wimbledon rose through the leagues, I also gained promotions as a match official with them to the Conference and was fortunate enough to officiate AFC Wimbledon on many occasions, with my last being an emergency 4th official in a league 2 match against Plymouth !  Since retiring as a match official in the Conference and WSL, I returned to watching AFC Wimbledon as a season ticket holder attending many games home and away.

In my professional career, I have been worked in the pensions industry for 28 years and I am currently Head of Pensions for Network Rail as well as being a Trustee Director of the £35bn Railways Pension Scheme and two other pension schemes with assets of £1bn. As a Trustee Director, I am tasked to be the custodian of pension benefits for over 350,000 people and look to ensure that people are paid their pension benefits in full as and when they become due. This involves making strategic decisions around how to invest money, administer benefits, understand and interpret complex legislative matters, provide professional support and guidance to the Executive Team that sits under the Trustee Board and to challenge processes to ensure we get the best out of our people. Being a Trustee Director has helped me understand how complex businesses operate and should be governed effectively and I am always personally looking to do my very best for all those that we support around us.

I have watched our club grow and seen the amazing work that our fans, our army of volunteers and our paid employees have carried out to get us to where we are now. With us all returning to Plough Lane in the last year, we once again look to take this amazing club forward in crazy and challenging times, ensuring that we can provide a football club of choice for our fans, our community and all those that we welcome to be involved with our amazing story.

What will I add to the DTB and why vote for me ? Well, I have had so much passion for this club pretty much all of my life and AFC Wimbledon is one of my favourite topics of conversation. I love football, whether it be as a fan, a match official or having a kick around with friends and I want this game and this club to be the best that it possibly can be. I am confident that by utilising my professional experience as a Pension Trustee Director and the knowledge and understanding of running multi billion pound pension schemes, I can help add further experience to the DTB in how they govern the club, make decisions on behalf of the Trust members and how we execute important decisions to take the club forward. With a strong background in Administration, Finance and Governance, I want to be able to help take the club and the DTB forward so that they are respected in all that they do by their footballing peers, local businesses and the community,  without putting all that we have worked hard for & stood for at risk. I want to be able to challenge our processes, influence and help improve our decision making processes, ensuring we do the right things for our fans and our community whilst challenging the status quo and learning lessons from not only our past but from other clubs too. 

Rome nor a football club were ever built in a day, however I would like to think that if you vote to elect me onto the DTB you will be able to see the Trust and the Club taking things forward and becoming more professional in all that we do, making this great football club even greater.

COYD’s !

Mark Engelbretson