COLLINGWOOD president Mark Korda has discouraged former AFL legal advisor Jeff Browne from launching a challenge to the Magpies board.
However, he expects Browne to make a bid for a board seat as early as the end of the season.
Korda's public warning to Browne comes after long-serving Collingwood vice-president and billionaire businessman Alex Waislitz stepped down from the board on Tuesday night.
Waislitz will be replaced by former professional athlete, medical doctor and public servant Dr Bridie O'Donnell. Former Magpies club champion Paul Licuria and Indigenous business leader Jodie Sizer were appointed vice-presidents.
Korda, who succeeded Eddie McGuire as president in April after McGuire stepped down in February, said it wasn't in the club's best interests to hold an extraordinary general meeting.
"I've met with Jeff Browne and we talked broadly about the Collingwood Football Club and I think he understands coups aren't in the best interest of football clubs either," he said.
"I think what will happen is directors are elected every three years. There are three directors up for re-election at the end of this season and any member who wants to come on the board could stand for [election]. I think that's an appropriate process and that's what our constitution allows for."
Korda said he had not asked Browne to call off any mooted challenge to the Magpies board when they met, and he did not know for certain if Browne intended to force the club into an extraordinary general meeting.
"You'll have to ask Jeff. I just have a view and the board has a view that coups aren't good for football clubs and the right time is when the directors are up for re-election next season," he said.
When asked if former president McGuire was involved in the push for Browne to join the board, Korda said: "Why would Eddie want to tear down his own legacy? Eddie's always put Collingwood first.
"He resigned in February because, as he said, Collingwood needed clear air. Five directors were on the board with Eddie - why would he want to do that to his own legacy?"
Korda's public comments come after weeks of reports, including by AFL.com.au's Damian Barrett, that Browne was considering a board challenge amid a tumultuous period at Collingwood, sparked by the release of the Do Better report that revealed systemic racism at the club, and McGuire's resignation in the wake of the report's release in late January.
The off-field unrest is unfolding as Collingwood, with just two wins from its first nine games, endures its worst start to a season since 2005. Coach Nathan Buckley is out of contract and in his 10th season at the helm.
In a statement released on Tuesday night, Collingwood said Waislitz had made clear his intentions to step down from the board earlier this year after almost 23 years as a director.
"It's been an honour to have served the club for more than two decades and I'm pleased to be leaving the board at time when we are in a strong financial position," Waislitz said.
"Collingwood is now in a period of renewal and it's appropriate that I make way for that process to continue. I wish Mark and the team continued success and I am happy to assist in any way I can."
Korda said O'Donnell's appointment was a key part of the club's renewal at board level.
Super excited to be joining the board of @CollingwoodFC I hope to contribute my skills to a great group of people that’s seeking to help make a great club even better. When I first moved to Melbourne I supported plenty of clubs but as a member I’m absolutely pumped say #GoPies— Dr Bridie O’Donnell (@Bridie_OD) May 18, 2021
"With a medical, public health and elite sporting background, Bridie offers expertise across a range of fields that are of importance to Collingwood," Korda said.
"My strong view is that in the 21st century the Collingwood board ought to reflect a greater gender balance, cultural diversity and a younger profile as well as the critical skills required to run a large and prominent sporting business.
"A club such as ours operates at the intersection of elite sport, business and community. Someone of Bridie's calibre will help in all of those fields and enable us to picture, plan for and realise a future full of possibilities and opportunity."