Friends & Foundation


The Friends of Sydney University Football Club (SUFC) was established in 1996 by Peter Hemming, Executive Chairman of Heathley Limited, during a time when rugby was transitioning to professionalism and SUFC was facing relegation.

The Friends, a mentoring group consisting of influential senior business leaders and professionals, has played a significant role in the success and sustainability of SUFC.

With over 50 prominent members from various industries, the Friends are committed to mentoring the players of the Club. Interestingly, only one-third of the Friends played rugby for Sydney University, and only half attended the University of Sydney, yet all are dedicated to helping the players and the Club.

The Friends’ contributions include a mentoring program aimed at assisting players in their business and professional careers, as well as annual donations to the Sydney University Football Club Foundation.

Recently David AO and Barbara Mortimer were honoured at a dinner in the Great Hall and attended by approximately 250 family, supporters, players and rugby people. The purpose of the dinner was to celebrate the Mortimer’s contribution to rugby at the University and beyond. David was instrumental in establishing the SUFC Foundation and has variously been Chairman of the Friends of SUFC; the Foundation; Sydney University Sport and Fitness and led the club as President while Barbara has always been there, right by David’s side.

Guests were welcomed by the Nomads Quartet on the lawns of the University quadrangle and there were tributes from Chair of the Foundation, Jim Cooney; Chancellor of the University, Belinda Hutchinson AC; former 1st grade captain and winner of multiple Shute Shields, Tim Davidson and long -time sponsors Buildcorp owners Josephine AM and Tony AM Sukkar. Many tales were told and memories revisited. Before David’s and Barbara’s responses, the attendees were entertained by an extraordinary performance of worldclass tenor Diego Torres.

The evening was expertly managed by Andrew Coorey who, as always, did an excellent job.

It was an exceptional evening organised by Ray Dearlove, who conceived the idea of the dinner, John Coorey, Andrew Wennerbom, Tony Mulveney and Jim Cooney and below are the links to the tributes of the evening.

Speech 1, Jim Cooney:

Speech 2: Belinda Hutchinson

Speech 3: Tim Davidson

Speech 4: Josephine and Tony Sukkar and David and Barbara Mortimer

Diego Torres Opera Singer:

The 27th anniversary of the Friends of SUFC was recently celebrated with a fantastic dinner at St. John’s College. The event brought together 70 members, SUFC players, and guests. The evening featured performances by coloratura soprano Mary-Jean O’Doherty and tenor Jack Treacy, accompanied by talented musicians.

Dr. David Mortimer AO, Chairman of the Friends, introduced Dr. Simone Scovell, a Sydney University graduate, who gave a toast to the university, sharing her personal journey from a young girl marveling at the university gates to representing Australia in basketball and founding a healthcare company. Wayne Erickson, former Principal of St. Andrews College and renowned rugby referee, provided insightful commentary on the important role the University of Sydney plays in the interaction between athletics and academia in today’s society.

The event also included a delicious meal prepared by the staff of St John’s College, complemented by excellent French wines donated by David Lyons. Al Campbell, a former Wallaby, introduced Dr. Brett Robinson, who shared his journey from playing rugby league in Toowoomba to being a founding player in the Brumbies and representing Australia internationally. Dr. Robinson’s personal stories captivated the audience, recognizing his significant contributions to Australian Rugby.

In closing, Dr. David Mortimer expressed gratitude to all the Friends’ members for their support and continued commitment to mentoring the players of Sydney University Football Club.


Established in 2003, our foundation aims to support the growth of players and facilities at the SUFC. We provide assistance through scholarships, equipment, and facility development. Additionally, we are dedicated to preserving and promoting the rich history and heritage of Australia’s oldest Rugby Club.

While our club has a storied past, we recognise the need to adapt to an increasingly competitive environment to ensure future success. It is crucial that we have the financial resources to meet new challenges and continue nurturing Australia’s rugby talent.

Your support for the Foundation is instrumental in achieving these goals and sustaining the esteemed reputation of the Sydney University Football Club both on and off the field.

If you would like to contribute online, please click here – make sure you select ‘Rugby Union’, or Advancement Portfolio_Sports Gift Form Rugby Union to download a donations form.

Thank you for considering to support us. We appreciate your contribution.

Sydney University Football Club Foundation Board

Jim Cooney

Sydney University Football Club Foundation

TCI Group

Jared Baker

Head of the Australia & New Zealand Corporate Advisory Solutions Team
Goldman Sachs

Ray Dearlove

Sydney University Football Club Foundation

Hugh Frazer

Vice President, Institutional Equity Sales
Jarden Group

Richard Harry

Managing Director
Lloyd Investments

David Lyons

Sydney University Football Club

David McDuling

Account Executive

David Mortimer AO

Sydney University Football Club Foundation

Jarrod Saffy

Crestone Wealth Management

Tom Woodcock

Investment Banking Analyst
Citi Bank

Investment Committee

Jim Cooney

Sydney University Football Club Investment Committee

Patrick Allaway

Bank of Queensland

Jared Baker

Head of the Australia & New Zealand Corporate Advisory Solutions Team
Goldman Sachs

David Mortimer AO

Sydney University Sport and Fitness

Tony Mulveney

Tax, Deals and Law at KPMG