Ken Spackman resigns after 12 years with diocese

Archbishop says Diocese "owes great debt of appreciation" to senior leader

By Mark Brolly

August 21 2020Mr Ken Spackman has resigned after 12 years in some of the most senior roles in the Anglican Diocese of Melbourne.

Archbishop Philip Freier made the announcement on 19 August "with great regret" of Mr Spackman's resignation as Chief Executive Officer of the Melbourne Anglican Diocesan Corporation (MADC). The resignation takes effect on 28 August.

New Zealand-born Mr Spackman and his family are moving to Mallacoota, with which he has had a long connection. During the tragic summer 2019-20 bushfires, he and his family opened their holiday units to those needing accommodation, including Red Cross volunteers and Country Fire Authority fire-fighters.

No successor to Mr Spackman has been named yet.

"Ken is leaving after 12 years of service to the Melbourne diocese," Dr Freier wrote in a staff bulletin. "He joined in 2008 as Registrar and General Manager, Business Services, then oversaw the transition of the diocese’s administration to the Melbourne Anglican Diocesan Corporation, becoming its first CEO."

MADC, which was incorporated in 2015, fulfils employment-related responsibilities for lay staff and clergy in the diocese, and is responsible for business services including human resources and payroll, as well as for redress to survivors of abuse. Mr Spackman, in his Business Services role, has had a close involvement with Anglican Funds and the Anglican Development Fund.

He completed 11 years as Registrar in March last year but has continued in the role of CEO of MADC until now.

"Ken has been involved in some challenging times for the diocese, not least our responses to the Global Financial Crisis and the Royal Commission into Institutional Sexual Abuse, and I am grateful for his calm and dedicated professionalism throughout his long years of service," Archbishop Freier wrote. "During his time with the Diocese of Melbourne Ken has been a valued colleague and active participant in all aspects of the life of the diocese.

"I greatly regret that the present times do not allow us to publicly appreciate Ken’s service and give him the farewell that I would have liked. Members of the diocesan synod have become accustomed to Ken’s careful presentations and explanation of the financial dealings of the diocese and owe him a great debt of appreciation for his commitment to clarity and transparency in these matters. There are many other achievements that could properly be recognised at this time. Amongst these, the establishment of a Records and Archives Centre for the diocese in North Fitzroy and the refurbishment of the 209 Flinders Lane office premises stand out as material legacies of his initiative and leadership.

"I wish Ken the very best for his future endeavours and give thanks to God for his Christian service over these past years."

Mr Spackman said it had been an honour and privilege to serve alongside Archbishop Freier for 12 years. 

"His steadfast leadership, clear and confident faith, warmth and understanding have been a highlight and have meant that I have stayed under his leadership longer than I have served any other leader in my career," he said. 

Mr Spackman also said he was extremely proud of all that Business Services and staff at the Anglican Centre had achieved and the support they had offered to Anglicans across the diocese. His executive team was an exceptionally talented set of individuals, while working with the Episcopate as a member of the Senior Leadership Team had been profound "and their encouragement of me in my fledgling theological studies has been incredible".  

"I believed that God called me to this role in 2008 and equally, although leaving has been a hard decision for many reasons, it is clear to me that the time is right and I have, since making that decision, seen the familiar footprints of the God behind me, the God beside me and the God ahead of me," Mr Spackman said.  

"I am looking forward to life in a slow lane and using all that I have learned and experienced in a new arena, working with and assisting in the bushfire recovery in Mallacoota."