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Essendon's new chief from Echuca

Echuca’s Xavier Campbell will lead Essendon Football Club into a new era.

LUKE MCMANUS July 28, 2014 10:57am

New Essendon chief executive Xavier Campbell


Echuca’s Xavier Campbell will lead Essendon Football Club into a new era.
 
Campbell, 34, was announced as Essendon’s new chief executive following a board meeting on Thursday night.
 
Fronted by chairman Paul Little, delegates voted unanimously in favour of elevating Campbell to the top job, left vacant after the departure of former chief Ray Gunston in December.
 
Campbell stepped in as chief operating officer as part of the Bombers’ restructured executive and has helped rebuild Essendon’s football department.
 
‘‘It’s been a great honour to be selected as chief executive of one of the greatest AFL/VFL clubs,’’ Campbell said.
 
‘‘I’ve been an Essendon person all my life so that makes it even better for me.com‘‘The past six or seven months have gone quite quickly.
 
‘‘It’s a challenging time for the club but there’s plenty of positivity within the organisation that we’re moving forward with, so it’s a great result to now be in the role.’’
 
Campbell, who worked as general manager of projects and partnerships at the Bombers for five years, faced plenty of challenges during the seven-month stint as chief operations officer.
 
ASADA’s ongoing investigation, on top of James Hird’s 12-month absence from the club, are among the issues which have ‘‘fast-tracked’’ Campbell’s rise.
 
‘‘I didn’t have much of a choice at first, I had to roll with the punches,’’ Campbell said.
 
‘‘But working at Essendon for as long as I have, I’ve formed good relationships and have great support around me.
 
‘‘You find out a lot about yourself from a leadership perspective.’’
 
‘‘People want direction and clarity because it isn’t all black and white with what we’re facing.’’
 
Campbell becomes the youngest among the AFL’s current crop of chief executives.
 
The former Echuca and Sturt (SANFL) footballer played more than 100 games for the Murray Bombers, retiring from the game completely in 2012.
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