House debates

Monday, 7 December 2020

Statements by Members

Gordon, Mr Peter

4:32 pm

Photo of Tim WattsTim Watts (Gellibrand, Australian Labor Party, Shadow Assistant Minister for Communications) Share this | | Hansard source

I rise to acknowledge the end of an era as Peter Gordon, President of the Western Bulldogs, has announced that he will stand down from his second stint at the helm of the Dogs. He leaves an unparalleled dynasty. In the best of times and in the worst of times for the dogs, Peter was there leading the way. In his first stint as president, back in 1989, he was there for the worst of times. The dogs were on the brink, second last on the ladder and millions of dollars in debt. The VFL and Ross Oakley took the opportunity to try to force a merger with Fitzroy. They didn't reckon with Peter Gordon, who alongside Irene Chatfield, Dennis Galimberti and the Footscray community deployed an audacious legal strategy to save the Dogs for future generations of fans.

Returning for his second stint as president, Peter would this time be there for the best of times: when the Dogs won the most magical, most sentimental flag in the history of the competition when the dogs won their first flag in 62 years in 2016. Again Peter was vindicated. Tom Boyd was worth every cent. It was under his presidency that the Bulldogs fielded a team in the first AFL Women's match against the Demons before going on to win the AFLW flag in 2018.

During his time as President, the Western Bulldogs have played an invaluable leadership role in my community in Melbourne's west through the Western Bulldogs community fund and projects like the Sons of the West men's health program. They also exited poker machines altogether during his time. What a legacy. Thank you, Peter Gordon, a true son of the west, a great Australian and a Bulldog through and through.