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ACT Brumbies chief Andrew Fagan steps down

Andrew Fagan.

Andrew Fagan. Photo: Stuart Walmsley

Emotional Brumbies chief executive Andrew Fagan says ''it makes sense'' to quit the Super Rugby club now, declaring it's time for a new challenge after 12 years in charge of the ACT franchise.

Fagan announced on Friday he was resigning in December, just months after signing a new one-year contract to lead the Brumbies into the future.

It continues the Brumbies' turbulent off-season which was triggered by coach Jake White's decision to quit the last two years of his contract despite lifting the team to the top of Super Rugby.

Losing a chief executive and World Cup-winning coach is a massive and unexpected leadership overhaul for the Brumbies following their rise into the Super Rugby final.

Fagan was in contention for a cross-code switch to the Canterbury Bulldogs earlier this year and was interviewed to replace Todd Greenberg.

There is also speculation linking Fagan to the NSW Waratahs or a move to the NRL in the coming months.

Fagan insisted he had not decided on his future and he had no job to start at the end of his Brumbies tenure.

Quitting the Brumbies allows Fagan to negotiate openly with potential employers.

''It makes sense to [leave the Brumbies] now, I've been thinking about it for some time and in many respects I've been thinking about it for four years,'' Fagan said.

''I think the organisation could do with some fresh eyes and I could do with some fresh challenges.

''I agreed to extend for one final term, but the way the things have panned out this year … this is a much better time to depart the organisation.

''I do so with a heavy heart, but excited about the future. I've been presented with a number of opportunities but I haven't been able to pursue them because of my commitment with the Brumbies.

''I look forward to exploring those in the new year.''

Fagan informed the board on Thursday he was resigning.

No interim chief executive has been appointed and chairman Sean Hammond said the Brumbies were in no rush to find a replacement, even if the club starts the 2014 Super Rugby season without a boss.

Australian rugby and Brumbies great Joe Roff, who is on the Brumbies board, has emerged as one of the front-runners.

The Brumbies have also secured the University of Canberra as a major sponsor for the 2014 season and an announcement about the partnership renewal is expected in the coming weeks.

Stephen Larkham has replaced White as the head coach while Laurie Fisher is the club's new director of rugby.

Fagan started at the Brumbies as general manager in 2002 and was promoted to chief executive in 2005.

''A December finish is better, it allows the new chief executive to come into an organisation that's in good shape,'' Fagan said.

Fagan has overseen massive changes at the Brumbies since taking charge as chief executive.

He helped the Brumbies through heartache when player Shawn Mackay died in South Africa in 2009.

''There are some moments I'll reflect on with sadness, times like Shawn Mackay those times were tough,'' a teary Fagan said.

''I've seen some great things, I've been here when we won championships and I'm proud of where the team is now. At times decisions weren't popular … but they've been for the better of the organisation.''

He endured controversy to get ACT government approval for a $30 million, 130-apartment complex to be built at the club's Griffith headquarters.

The Brumbies will also move into a new $15 million home at the University of Canberra at the end of March.

Fagan stepped in to sack coach Andy Friend after just two games in 2011 and the Brumbies experienced the lowest ebb of their history following the decision.

However, he recruited World Cup-winning coach White to lead a revival.

The Brumbies narrowly missed the final in White's first season in 2011 and then charged into the Super Rugby final this year, losing in a heart-breaking decider to the Waikato Chiefs.

10 comments so far

  • Thanks for stitching up ACT Ratepayers with no betterment charges payable from change of lease from community/sporting to residential. $30M development and the cream skimmed by a club who turned their back on the Griffith community.Barr complicit and doing Molonglo no favours as usual.
    You milked so many free kicks for Brumbies out of the average Canberran's pockets over a decade that most honest folk will never know about, so you can be assured you won't be missed.

    Commenter
    Poisonous legacy
    Location
    Canberra
    Date and time
    November 22, 2013, 1:58PM
    • @Poisonous legacy - "and the cream skimmed by a club who turned their back on the Griffith community', what a pack of hypocrites you are, one minute you are tearing the walls down to stop the development , now your pissed that you wont get a cut, I say again - what a pack of hypocrites.

      Commenter
      Bob
      Location
      Canberra
      Date and time
      November 22, 2013, 2:08PM
  • When do I start in the new job?

    Commenter
    Outraged of Palmerston
    Date and time
    November 22, 2013, 2:39PM
    • Bob, you're missing the point - we ALL lose by the Club not paying the betterment tax in full. That's EVERY ratepayer in town...

      Commenter
      Poisonous legacy
      Location
      Canberra
      Date and time
      November 22, 2013, 2:40PM
      • P Legacy, I'm a dyed in the wool, tattooed on Brumbies supporter and I agree with you. The Griffith proposal borders on corruption. I do not live in the area but I did take great interest in the proceedings. The relevant process', authorisations and standards were not met in almost all of the developments basic mandatory requirements. and this two bob politician disrespects both the authority and the people of canberra and overrides it. Pathetic, disgraceful and if I see Barr in person I will let him know to his face.

        And it was time for Fagan...... nice article that glossed over some of the poorer elements of his tenure..... Friend and Nucifora as and example.

        Commenter
        Hammer
        Location
        ACT
        Date and time
        November 22, 2013, 3:10PM
        • It seems he milked the average Canberrian . What a bugger they've been milking the rest of us for ever .
          Fagan has left the Brumbies in good shape and in good hands .
          He was astray with Nucifora and Friend , but so is Pulver with Lunk.
          He could be just the man to replace BS Billy. Don't hold your breath but , it takes a while for the ARU to catch up. Probably after the World Cup.

          Commenter
          Mankad
          Location
          Back in the bush
          Date and time
          November 22, 2013, 8:51PM
          • Can we now get Jake back?

            Commenter
            Brumbies Supporter
            Location
            Canberra
            Date and time
            November 22, 2013, 9:08PM
            • I don't hear too many comments from those who should about his departure.

              Commenter
              Ian
              Date and time
              November 23, 2013, 6:05AM
              • Good grief. What vitriol.
                Does anybody still think this is a Brumbies development? The Brumbies sold it to the developer. Surely you know that by now

                Management at the Brumbies couldn't manage a sweat on a hot day.

                Under new management, will there be no more conflicts of interest?

                Commenter
                Phew at
                Date and time
                November 23, 2013, 8:22AM
                • Job well done in a tough gig! Ignore the trolls and good luck in the future.

                  Commenter
                  Pado
                  Location
                  Canberra
                  Date and time
                  November 23, 2013, 8:55AM

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