We sat down with the newly-elected Imps Vice-Chairman, Roger Bates to discuss his role at Lincoln City Football Club the second of our all-new feature.
Roger was confirmed as Vice-Chairman on Wednesday evening, and gave a little bit of insight into his role, his aims and how his role has evolved from Academy Director to Vice-Chairman.
After spending numerous years as Academy Director, how does your role change as Vice-Chairman?
RB: It has been something of an evolution really. I became Director for Youth when I joined the board in early 2011, having previously been a volunteer on the Youth Development Board. When we decided to form an Executive Committee to support our CEO with the day-to-day management of the club I was invited to join. So I have been heavily involved with the running of the club for some time. As Vice Chairman my focus will remain with ExCo but also supporting Clive in his role as Chairman. To allow me to give the job the time and focus required I stood down recently as Director for Youth.
As a lifelong supporter of Lincoln City, how special was it being elected by the Board into your new role?
RB: As a young lad watching The Imps from the late 60s I could never have imagined contributing to the operational management of the club, let alone becoming its Vice Chairman. I was immensely proud and felt genuinely privileged to be elected by my boardroom colleagues, and the fantastic response from supporters to the news that Clive and I would be the new team leading the club was truly overwhelming. I have tried to acknowledge all the goodwill messages, but if I've missed anyone, thank you so much.
How can your background and expertise help the Imps sustain recent successes?
RB: As a member of the board who has witnessed the remarkable transformation under Danny and Nicky, I believe the relationship I have built with them and with Clive means we have a shared understanding of where we want to be and how we can get there.
In my working life I gained experience of developing strategies and delivering projects which I believe can assist us as we develop the club's infrastructure to underpin what the management team and players are achieving. I also held a number of senior leadership roles from which I hope I can bring good practice in areas such as management, communication and open consultation.
How do you envisage your working partnership with Clive going, moving forward?
RB: Clive and I talk regularly whether he is in the U.K. or at home. We have discussed how my role may differ from what has traditionally been that of a Vice Chairman. There will be times when Clive is in South Africa that I will undertake duties on his behalf and I will also chair our board meetings.
We share the same vision for the football club so, working with ExCo, the board of directors and our great team behind the scenes, I am confident we can continue to provide an environment in which the players and management team can flourish.
Clive and I are determined to ensure Lincoln City maintains the momentum that has been developed in recent years. Where this can take us remains to be seen but we are all focused on maximising our potential.