The winds of change started blowing across Kardinia Park (Simonds Stadium) in the late 2000s. The Cats' drought breaking 2007 premiership was the first major outward display that the club was onto something more than just a plan for sustainable finances and a balanced player list - a money can't buy, progressive corporate culture was taking hold.
Photographing during Round 10, as the 2007 players reunited for a lap of honour, I thought about how much and how little has changed in the decade since that first overt sign of a winning culture. Most of the players are gone and the game is faster than ever, even the stadium has changed, and I became a corporate photographer in Geelong.
But the Cats' culture is now more pervasive than ever. It transcends on and off field operations. It is directed and experienced by the executive and players and is embraced by the Geelong community.
There exists now a vibrancy around the Club - almost a realistic anticipation among staff and sponsors and fans, that success and ambition are equal partners in the Cats' journey. The late Bob Davis would say that what's transpired in a decade is 'fair dinkum unbelievable.'
The pokies are gone and the Cats are actively investing meaningfully through community engagement and assistance programs - because they can and because they realise a unique obligation to contribute to community wellbeing.
Sometimes as a corporate photographer in Geelong I come across inspiring stories of business reasoning. Speaking to Club partners recently, Cats President Colin Carter recounted how he was once told that truly great organisations are successful, respected and appreciated - that it takes all three to be in the big league of greatness.
The tenth season since that first inclination back in 2007 of a culture change, boldly pursuing success, respect and appreciation (back when Frank Costa was President), is nearing its conclusion (the Cats are in predictable ladder leading form). But the Cats' journey continues.