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Cath King & John Quayle Awarded Life Membership

Two of the Sydney Roosters’ greatest administrators, Cath King and John Quayle, have been awarded Life Membership of the Club.

During the 2024 Annual General Meeting at Easts Leagues Club on Monday afternoon (February 20), King and Quayle (player 585) were both bestowed with Life Membership by Roosters Chairman Nick Politis.

King recently celebrated her 30th anniversary at the Club, which began in 1993 at Easts Leagues Club in administrative roles, before holding an executive assistant role at the Football Club.

King has also broken new ground, becoming the first female football manager in 2010-2011, and has now become the first female Life Member in the Club’s 117-year history. Currently, King holds a role as the Club’s Executive Manager of Club Operations.

“I’m really proud and overwhelmed, extremely privileged and honoured to be part of the Club and to receive this today,” King said.

“Work has become more of a home to me over the years, where I was given an opportunity to start at the Club and work in a number of roles. I just started to feel that I belonged.

“Throughout my entire career, that’s how Nick (Politis), the board and everyone else has made me feel and it is how I want everyone else to feel about the Club - I always just want to make people feel like this is a place where they want to be.

“The Club gave me the opportunity to, hopefully, in some small way, have an impact on those people that I’ve worked with – the wonderful people and the wonderful players – on their lives and their journeys.

“However small that impact may be, I hope I have played a small part in that.”

Brian Canavan, former CEO, highlighted King’s long-standing contributions to the Club.

“Cath has been blessed with a beautiful personality type where as soon as you meet her, whether you’re a player, staff member, family member, stakeholder or sponsor, she always greets you with warmness,” he said.

“She has a great knack for making everyone feel important. That just adds to the Club and its pride, and how important the people are.

She has met and surpassed every form of criteria that is solicited in the constitution, and she has set new benchmarks for future life members.

Brian Canavan On Cath King's contributions to the Club

“Going way beyond her personality and her humility, the other traits that she displayed - particularly to new people at the Club - was a care, compassion and collaboration with anyone surrounding her.

“We talk about organisations being known as a family Club, which is most evident at the Roosters, and Cath certainly embraces everyone straight away into the culture.

“Cath has an uncanny knack of assimilating information and coming up with great solutions. Her skillsets have transferred throughout a number of areas within the Club, and after working here 30 years later, she still knows everything about the Club; what makes it tick, what makes it so great and what makes it so successful.

“She has met and surpassed every form of criteria that is solicited in the constitution, and she has set new benchmarks for future life members.”

Quayle, simultaneously began his first-grade career at the Club in 1968, coinciding with a role at the Eastern Suburbs Leagues Club, kicking off a long and successful career in administration.

Quayle played 51 first-grade games and 89 grade games over five seasons with the Roosters, featuring in the 1972 Grand Final, and later represented New South Wales and Australia during his time at Parramatta, which saw him feature in the 1975 Rugby League World Cup.

Despite this, he remained in his role as a purchasing manager at Easts Leagues throughout the entirety of his playing career.

Quayle also held roles as a first-grade selector and first-grade manager upon his return to the Club, while coaching the under 23s side and reserve grade side throughout the late 1970s.

Following his playing career, Quayle was appointed as Assistant Secretary/Manager of Easts Leagues - a position he held until 1983 - a 15-year long career with the Eastern Suburbs Leagues Club.

Quayle assumed roles as the General Manager and CEO of the NSWRL and ARL from 1983-1996, with the game undergoing dramatic changes under his leadership, which included the production of the famous Tina Turner campaign, as well as the expansion of the game Australia-wide throughout the 1990s.

Following his departure from the code, Quayle became the Venues Manager for the Sydney Olympic Games in 2000, consulting at other Olympic and International Games, while also chairing Venues NSW from 2012-2017. He has held a position on the Venues NSW board for over a decade.

“In 1967 I got a letter from Jimmy Hunt, the secretary of the Club, who asked if I wanted to come to Sydney to join the Roosters. I carried that letter around every day of my life, and I’ve still got it,” Quayle said.

“I was able to learn where I believe my administration skills came from, at this wonderful Club. They gave me the opportunity to spend time to learn whatever I could.

“I was the only football player to spend five years at Parramatta but still work at the League Club. It’s wonderful that I have been acknowledged, and the fifteen years of my life here was so special that the memories will never fade.”

Head Coach Trent Robinson paid tribute to Quayle’s contributions in both his Club and administrative capacities.

“Since I’ve come to the Roosters, I’ve really gotten to know John as a man,” he said.

“He changed the face of the game into what it is now. We’re about to go and play in Las Vegas and that was the biggest thing to him – to put us on the map and become a national sport.

He has always done things with a humble integrity, and he constantly creates change for the better; not only for our game but for this state and this country.

Trent Robinson On John Quayle

“John stood in the face of Super League; the whole game was about to change shape and he and a few other great men like Nick (Politis) stood in the face of it. We may not be here today as a Roosters Club if it wasn’t for these men leading our game.

“With the Sydney Olympics, he changed the shape of Sydney and Australian sport. It was a great leap forward for our country during that time.

“He has always done things with a humble integrity, and he constantly creates change for the better; not only for our game but for this state and this country.

“If I ever have to ask somebody a question about what is right, I go to John. He’s the most honest person I’ve met in administration in sport, and he always has the best interest of Rugby League at heart.

“He’s a Rooster. He’s a legend of Rugby League and a legend who hails from our Club.”

The Club would like to congratulate both Cath King and John Quayle on their achievement.

Acknowledgement of Country

Sydney Roosters respect and honour the Traditional Custodians of the land and pay our respects to their Elders past, present and future. We acknowledge the stories, traditions and living cultures of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples on the lands we meet, gather and play on.