Meet the Ladder Board

Paul Marsh (Chairman)

Paul Marsh was appointed as CEO of the AFL Players’ Association in September 2014, the official representative body for male and female AFL players as well as more than 4000 alumni members. Paul led negotiations with the AFL towards a new six-year Collective Bargaining Agreement (CBA) for the male AFL footballers. Delivering players, a package of $1.84 billion, inclusive of player wages, investments in player development, the Player Retirement Scheme, injury and hardship support, marketing activities and past players.

At the end of 2016, he secured a landmark agreement with the league on payment and conditions for female footballers ahead of the inaugural AFLW season which has since led to the first CBA for AFLW footballers in 2019 and a subsequent three-year deal for 2020 - 2022.

Paul was previously the CEO of the Australian Cricketers’ Association (ACA). Paul has been a Director of Ladder since 2015. He was also the Executive Chairman of the Federation of International Cricketers’ Association (FICA), the international representative body of all professional cricketers and their associations and has been on the Board of the Athletes Alliance Australia (AAA) since 2007, including five years as Chairman.

Sarah Davies AM


Sarah is the Chief Executive Officer of Philanthropy Australia, a non-Executive Director of Kids Under Cover as well as the Centre for Social Impact. Sarah was recognised in the 2020 Australia Day Honours List as a Member of the Order of Australia (AM). Prior to joining Philanthropy Australia in October 2015, Sarah was CEO of The Reach Foundation, a for purpose organisation working to improve the wellbeing of young people so they can get the most out of life. Sarah has also been CEO of the Australian Communities Foundation, a non-profit charitable foundation. Before moving into the non-profit sector, her professional life included senior executive roles in tertiary education in Australia and private sector consulting in HR, marketing and strategy in Australia, Europe and the Middle East. Sarah is a Fellow of the Australian Institute of Management, a member of the Australian Institute of Company Directors, a Fellow of the Williamson Community Leadership Program and a Victorian Justice of the Peace.

Brad Sewell

Brad completed a Bachelor of Commerce at Deakin University in 2010 and completed his Masters of Business at Monash University in 2016. He finished his 12-year football career with the Hawthorn Football Club in 2014 as a 200 game player having won 2 Premierships and a Best and Fairest award. Brad was a member of the AFL Players' Association board for 6 years. He also sat on the Board for Zaidee's Rainbow Foundation for 2 years. Brad was appointed to the role of Ladder Strategic Partnerships Manager at the beginning of 2016, the same time he was appointed as a Director.

Elizabeth Lukin
Elizabeth is a strategic communications professional with over 25-years’ experience consulting to leaders in business, sport, government, NFP and membership organisations and unions.

Elizabeth was most recently General Manager of Corporate Affairs and Communications for the Australian Football League, following a career as an owner and director of one of Australia’s most successful public affairs, research and campaign agencies, Essential Media Communications. Elizabeth still works as a Corporate Affairs advisor to the AFL, and consults to organisations in the not for profit, Government and community sector. Elizabeth is also a Director of WorkSafe Victoria.

Sam Graham
Sam is the Head of States and Game Development at the AFL. Prior to this, Sam was the CEO of AFL NSW/ ACT for 5 years. Sam holds a Bachelor of Commerce from Deakin University and is a qualified chartered accountant. Sam commenced as a graduate at KPMG in 1997, in KPMG’s corporate recovery division moving in 2001 to a role in strategic finance with Centrica plc, based in London. After a contract at Fosters Group in Melbourne in 2005, Sam joined the AFL in September of that year as Strategic Planner. In June 2011 he was appointed Manager – Strategy, and in September 2011 was appointed Manager – Club Services. Sam was appointed to the role of General Manager, Strategy & Club Services in May 2013. Sam has been a director of Ladder since June 2011.

James Avery
James Avery is the Chief Operating Officer of the GWS GIANTS Football Club. James joined the GWS GIANTS in 2015 during a key growth period for the organisation. Prior to this, James worked in corporate affairs roles for the AFL, England and Wales Cricket Board and Melbourne Storm.

John Ulkowski
John Ulkowski is the GM of Business Operations at the AFL Players’ Association, holds a Bachelor of Commerce from Deakin University and is a qualified Chartered Accountant.  John worked in various accounting roles between 1999 to 2005 at Moore Stephens, HLB Mann Judd / Stockford Limited and Lockwood & Wehrens, before moving to Hansen International taking up the position of Finance Manager.  After holding the position of Financial Controller at Aussie Farmers Direct for a short period in 2007/2008, John joined the AFL in March 2008 where he held various AFL State Body Finance Manager positions, which included AFL NSW/ACT, AFL NT and AFL Tasmania, as well for the GWS Giants from 2011 to 2013.  In May 2013, John was appointed the AFL Finance Manager, where he remained until moving to the AFL Players’ Association in June 2016 to take up his current position as GM of Business Operations. 

Jordan Roughead

Jordan Roughead is an AFL footballer who currently plays with the Collingwood Football Club. Prior to playing with the CFC, Jordan played with the Western Bulldogs from 2008-2018. While competing in the AFL, Jordan has completed a Bachelor of Business through RMIT University and is currently studying a Master of Business degree through Deakin University. Jordan has been involved in player leadership groups at both the CFC and WBFC, represented the players as an AFL Players' Association delegate, been involved in the development of the WBFC Reconciliation Action Plan, and worked closely with charity organisations Ladder and StandUp Events.

ACNC Governance Standards

The Governance Standards are a set of core, minimum standards that deal with how charities are run (including their processes, activities and relationships) – their governance.

The Standards require charities to remain charitable, operate lawfully, and be run in an accountable and responsible way. They help charities remain trusted by the public and continue to do their charitable work.

Ladder is a registered Australian Charity with the ACNC and has deductible gift recipient (DGR) status.

Governance documents

Ladder Project Limited - Agreement by Members and Constitution

The Ladder Project Foundation - Trust Deed

You can access our recent Annual Reports here.