Dons Trust Elections 2021 – Mini Manifestos
We are delighted to have twelve strong candidates who have put their names forward for the election to fill the five places on the Dons Trust Board. On the following pages you will find a short version of each candidate’s manifesto, provided by them (in reverse order to the ballot). You can read their full manifestos as part of the ballot pack that has been sent to every member of the Trust. You can also read them online at thedonstrust.org/elections and view the hustings from 13 November at the 9yr Podcast YouTube page. Electronic and paper ballots have been sent out based on member preferences. If you wish to vote in person or have a query about your ballot the Elections Steering Group will be present with the ballot box at the Dons Trust stall before the game at today’s match (up to 7.30) and before the games against Fleetwood on 27 November and Cheltenham in the FA Cup on 4 December (up to 2.45). A reminder that the closing date for returning your ballots is 4th December at Midnight.
First match 1989 FA Cup beating Grimsby 3-1. Dons Trust Treasurer since 2020 and on DT Finance Committee. A chartered accountant and on the Board of two charities, I come with strong finance skills and with experience in Board collaboration/governance, HR, and overseeing operations. Offering continuity on the finance side, I want to ensure we refinance the £4m MSP loan early 2022 and help the Club deliver its five year Business Plan. A big motivation is to never be in a position where we hand over the club, again.
– I deliver.
– I’m here to listen to your views and act on
– I have the skills, time and passion for the Club.
To take AFC to the next level we must be much more professional, be much shrewder with our decisions, maintain fan ownership and most importantly increase revenue. In my statement, I discuss why I think I can help and outline two specific areas I think are needed to contribute to our future vision. I want to bring dynamic energy, digital savviness, and a true brand ethos to the club. As a unique club, we need to make better decisions now more than ever and be accountable for poor choices and poor communication, so we can stand proud of everything AFC does on and off the pitch. I hope you will consider reading my ideas in full.
I’m Dennis Lowndes, a supporter for 60 years and club volunteer, and I believe AFC Wimbledon should be fan owned forever. What we have achieved on our journey from non-league is nothing short of remarkable and has proved beyond doubt that fan ownership is no barrier to success. We have a magnificent new home; a wonderful community club; hundreds of boys and girls in our youth teams; successful men and women’s’ teams; and an incredible charitable Foundation including the Dons Local Action Group. I want to ensure that we continue to be successful, to maximise our use of Plough Lane, to grow our fan ownership model and to create a ‘One Club’ ethos and culture across every area of AFC Wimbledon.
I’ve been a Wimbledon fan since the early 80s & over the years have been involved with the club from selling programmes, to being a referee and a season ticket holder, now hopefully as a Dons Trust Board
member too. I’m Head of Pensions for Network Rail & a Trustee Director of the £35bn Railways Pension Schemes. I will look to utilise my professional experience to help take the DTB & Club forward to make us respected in all that we do by our footballing peers, local community and businesses. I want to be able on behalf of all Trust members challenge our process, influence our decision making and do the right thing for our fans and community.
If I’m elected:
– I’ll always vote to ensure we retain control of our club. I’ll always tell you how I’ve voted and what I’ve argued.
– I’ll work to open up board business, so members know what every board member says and does, and everyone can be judged on their own record.
– I’ll push the club to be more transparent, with clear communications celebrating successes and owning mistakes.
– I’ll work to get the ticketing enquiry published openly to members and ensure the right lessons are learned no matter how difficult.
Previously I’ve worked in the background on fund raising initiatives such as WAWF and PLB. I currently sit on the finance committee, but at this critical juncture would like to help more.
• Refinance the MSP loan
• Increase match day revenues
• Grow PL365 commercial activities
• Finish the strategy review
• We are one indivisible club rooted in our community
• Fan ownership is non-negotiable
• Our volunteers are the core component of our hybrid model going forward
• Living wage should be introduced as soon as practicable
• Consult fans on matters of fundamental principle
• Experienced in fund raising and finance
• I will listen first to the collective knowledge of our fans
• Motto: Be kind. Work hard. Make a difference
I believe I am exceptionally good at communicating with people having spent my entire career in face-to- face sales roles. The DTB and the football club have been accused of not communicating with the fans effectively, for instance on the ticketing problems this season. I think I would be an ideal person to be the ‘link’ between the DTB and the fans. If elected I will propose to the DTB that if the fans have any complaints about the club then I should be the default person to deal with them. I would then either direct them to someone at the club or look into the matter myself as appropriate.
Please read my full manifesto on the DT website.
I’m standing for another term on the DTB because I don’t think my job is done, yet. The night I was sworn in was the night it was announced we were going to ‘have to sell the club’. My first job was to fight that. I was one of the first to
support the Bond, and argue against the sale, from on the DTB. I’ve also helped improve communication and two-way engagement with fans – launching Meet The DTB sessions and helping set up Meet The Manager/Meet The CEO events online. Don’t sell out, don’t treat the owners badly: that’s kinda my shtick. If you like transparency and having someone argue on behalf of the owners, vote for me.
It would be a great privilege to serve on the Wimbledon trust board as a member, following the Dons triumphant return to Plough Lane. To be a very small part of this great club’s history would truly be an honour. I believe I have the ability to contribute towards the future of this club and its fans, and I am a strong advocate for fan ownership of our beloved club. I am a Registered Nurse and frontline worker, during the pandemic and now more than ever I understand the importance of community and teamwork. I hope to bring a positive and adaptable attitude to the role so that I can fully fulfil the needs of the club.
I am a current member of the Dons Trust Board, and I am asking you to re-elect me. I am 100% in favour of the club remaining fan owned. We only have to let go once and it is lost forever. Fans are our power. We have the experts in every field amongst us. Let’s use it. Fan ownership is our USP. I want AFC Wimbledon to be the No 1 Community
Club I want companies queuing up to be associated with us. I want every Wimbledon fan to be able to put on our club shirt proud in everything it stands for, safe in the knowledge that the club will always be there and owned by you.
I’m thrilled to again run for election to the Dons Trust Board. My pitch is simple: I will use my business experience to strengthen AFC Wimbledon’s financial position in order to remain supporter-owned. After graduating from Harvard Business School, I’ve led sports and media companies seeking to grow into the next chapter of their history while remaining true their core. I would bring the same energy I have in my career to supporting AFC Wimbledon in three areas:
1. Growing the amount of video content the club
2. Aggressively pursuing additional sponsorship
around the world
3. More proactively engaging club supporters globally
through social media
The future is bright for the Dons, and I would be
honored to help.
My key principles are:
• We remain fan owned. This is not negotiable.
• We champion our status as a community club.
I totally recognise the value of volunteers who
help make us sustainable.
• We must be e a responsible employer and
ensure that our staff have the opportunity to
deliver in their roles
• We must support the club’s management as it
seeks to maximise our revenues now that we
are back at Plough Lane
• That the work of our Academy continues to
evolve so that we meet our aim of being ‘first
choice’ for all children in Southwest London.
• We play a major role in working with the
relevant authorities to change the current
levels in inequality across football clubs