JOA CEO Ryan Foster appointed Chairman of Cavalier SC

By Sports Desk July 16, 2020

Ryan Foster, the Secretary-General and CEO of the Jamaica Olympic Association (JOA) will take on the additional role of Chairman of the Red Stripe Premier League’s Cavalier Soccer Club.

Foster, who is also President of Skateboarding Jamaica Limited and a director of the Jamaica Paralympic Association, brings a wealth of knowledge to the position of the club founded by the late national player and coach Leighton Duncan. Cavalier won the country’s top-flight league in 1981 and has a long and distinguished record in the country’s top flight.

“I am humbled to be appointed Chairman of this noblest club, Cavalier SC,” said Foster. “One of the first things I want to achieve along with the other executive members is to bring a sustainable corporate structure to the overall operation of the club, to develop a clear culture of goals and objectives that will be articulated in our operation and through our players and members of staff.

“Running a club in the RSPL is a difficult one if you are not nimble and flexible enough to monetise your assets and to find creative ways of generating sustainable revenues. This certainly has to be coupled with incentivising your players and coaching staff for performance on the field of play.”

Cavalier, which is characterised by its youthful influence and passing game, were finished eighth place in the 2019/20 RSPL standings,  two places outside the play-off spots – when COVID-19 forced a postponement and eventual cancellation of the season.

Foster noted the club’s strong technical capabilities, led by Rudolph Speid and their goal to fortify its structure.

“We have a strong technical team led by Mr Speid and now we have to develop a structure to support our technical play, but also one that encourages discipline, integrity, teamwork and fair play,” he stated.

 “No club in this league can survive without a strong development programme, (not only) through our youth system, but one that develops players who can matriculate to higher needs to not only benefit them but Cavalier.

“Looking forward to this task and I have always had a passion to help others achieve and self-actualise,” Foster underlined.

Speid, who served as the club’s chairman while serving the capacity as head of coaching for about a decade, explained their decision to add Foster to Cavalier’s team.

“It was a whole thrust for the company to broaden its management structure to ensure that we are keeping up to international standards and in line with what is required to move the club forward in a positive way to keep up with international clubs,” said Speid.

“By streamlining the club along with Mr. Thomas (Andrew), who is the president, we decided to bring in a chairman and then shift my responsibilities from being the chairman to become the Sporting Director.

“So because of his competences in business, sports and just generally what he has achieved for himself over the years, we thought he would be a good candidate to become the Chairman of our club,” Speid noted.

As a professional in business management, Foster is a former CEO of Tastee Limited, former Head of Business Development for Hardware & Lumber, former Treasury Operations Manager, First Global, the first Jamaican member of the Pan American Sports Organization (PASO) Finance Commission, Chairman of Wolmer’s Preparatory School, Chairman Express Canteen Services Limited and Chairman Cre8 Event Management Company.

“He will be concerned with governance, ensuring that our structures are maintained. We have different structures now, finance structure, marketing structure, technical structure, administrative structure,” Speid explained.

“We have been successful over the last couple of years and we wanted to improve on that as we go along. So those are some of the reasons we thought that he’d be a good Chairman. And then free me up to do different things as the past Chairman that will be more beneficial to the club,” he reasoned. “It’s really just trying to copy the best governance practices why we decided to go that route and we couldn’t find anybody more qualified than him.

 “What we’re doing is to give people more individual functions so they can focus. One of the reasons why we do it is to give players an opportunity too. We kind of paint ourselves in a storyline that is you want to play national football or go overseas Cavalier is the best place to come because we are geared towards that. That’s a storyline we want to keep so there’s all for a player who is very good and wants to go further,” Speid said.

“One of the biggest things about Cavalier is that there was a research done on all the professional clubs in the world and Cavalier was the ninth youngest professional club in the world, number one in CONCACAF.

“Once we segregate like we’ve done and give everybody different functions … it gives me more time so I can go away and get myself more educated in football,” said Speid. “This segregation is so key at this moment.”

 

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