Calendar An icon of a desk calendar. Cancel An icon of a circle with a diagonal line across. Caret An icon of a block arrow pointing to the right. Email An icon of a paper envelope. Facebook An icon of the Facebook "f" mark. Google An icon of the Google "G" mark. Linked In An icon of the Linked In "in" mark. Logout An icon representing logout. Profile An icon that resembles human head and shoulders. Telephone An icon of a traditional telephone receiver. Tick An icon of a tick mark. Is Public An icon of a human eye and eyelashes. Is Not Public An icon of a human eye and eyelashes with a diagonal line through it. Pause Icon A two-lined pause icon for stopping interactions. Quote Mark A opening quote mark. Quote Mark A closing quote mark. Arrow An icon of an arrow. Folder An icon of a paper folder. Breaking An icon of an exclamation mark on a circular background. Camera An icon of a digital camera. Caret An icon of a caret arrow. Clock An icon of a clock face. Close An icon of the an X shape. Close Icon An icon used to represent where to interact to collapse or dismiss a component Comment An icon of a speech bubble. Comments An icon of a speech bubble, denoting user comments. Comments An icon of a speech bubble, denoting user comments. Ellipsis An icon of 3 horizontal dots. Envelope An icon of a paper envelope. Facebook An icon of a facebook f logo. Camera An icon of a digital camera. Home An icon of a house. Instagram An icon of the Instagram logo. LinkedIn An icon of the LinkedIn logo. Magnifying Glass An icon of a magnifying glass. Search Icon A magnifying glass icon that is used to represent the function of searching. Menu An icon of 3 horizontal lines. Hamburger Menu Icon An icon used to represent a collapsed menu. Next An icon of an arrow pointing to the right. Notice An explanation mark centred inside a circle. Previous An icon of an arrow pointing to the left. Rating An icon of a star. Tag An icon of a tag. Twitter An icon of the Twitter logo. Video Camera An icon of a video camera shape. Speech Bubble Icon A icon displaying a speech bubble WhatsApp An icon of the WhatsApp logo. Information An icon of an information logo. Plus A mathematical 'plus' symbol. Duration An icon indicating Time. Success Tick An icon of a green tick. Success Tick Timeout An icon of a greyed out success tick. Loading Spinner An icon of a loading spinner. Facebook Messenger An icon of the facebook messenger app logo. Facebook An icon of a facebook f logo. Facebook Messenger An icon of the Twitter app logo. LinkedIn An icon of the LinkedIn logo. WhatsApp Messenger An icon of the Whatsapp messenger app logo. Email An icon of an mail envelope. Copy link A decentered black square over a white square.

Stabilise, grow, reach the Premiership: New Dunfermline chief executive David Cook outlines Pars plans

Dunfermline CEO David Cook.
Dunfermline CEO David Cook.

David Cook is determined to recapture the togetherness of the Jim Leishman and Bert Paton eras as the new Dunfermline chief executive seeks to steer his boyhood club towards the top-flight.

Cook was formally unveiled at East End Park on Thursday after being tempted from his role as chief commercial officer at Nottingham Forest.

A Fife native, he returns home as a tumultuous campaign for Dunfermline approaches a crescendo.

The Pars remain embroiled in a Championship survival battle, the appointment of Peter Grant proved ill-fated and chairman Ross McArthur will step down at the end of the season after suffering despicable abuse from a small minority of fans.

However, Grant’s successor, John Hughes, has overseen an upturn in results and — through his inimitable force of personality — has undoubtedly fostered a renewed rapport with the Dunfermline faithful.

Building upon that, and maximising growth in the community, will be one of Cook’s priorities, from the dressing room to the boardroom.

Galvanised: Dunfermline under Hughes

“Dunfermline needs a togetherness,” emphasised Cook. “That’s a togetherness across the club, the town and all the stakeholders involved with us.

“We want to build on the work John [Hughes] has started in terms of galvanising everyone.

“If you look at the club in the past — the Leishman era, the Paton era and, even coming out of administration [2013] — it was summed up by that special togetherness.

“That’s something we must never drift away from. That’s the same at any football club in any town or city. It’s vital to anything you want to achieve. Everyone needs to be pulling in the same direction.”

‘You’re hooked, aren’t you?’

A Dunfermline die-hard, Cook attended his first game when Leishman — now destined to sit alongside him in the director’s box — was in charge in the 1980s.

Even during six years working for Etihad Airlines in Abu Dhabi, he retained his season ticket for East End Park. With his wife also from Fife, Cook acknowledges that the ‘call of home’ was a factor.

However, he is keen to emphasise that his heart has not ruled his head.

With a new training ground under construction, a relaunched youth academy and ongoing support from German investors, Cook sees a huge opportunity at Dunfermline.

Pars die-hard: Cook

“Dunfermline has been an import part of my life since my dad took me to my first game,” he continued. “Once you’ve got your club, you’re hooked, aren’t you?

“It is a proud moment but I’m really keen to stress that I’m not here as this romantic, emotive appointment. I’m here because of my experiences in the business of football and because I believe it’s a project that can go places.

“There are investors from Germany who bring some brilliant sporting experiences and great legal, financial, commercial and marketing pedigree.

“There’s the infrastructure [training base] developments happening down at Rosyth. We believe that can be a home for the sporting and community side of the football club.

“We’ll look at how we then start to build our academy and develop our own players in a bit more depth.”

He added: “Of course, we want to enhance and improve on our league position. We’ve had a challenging season and we’ve got to get ourselves out of that position, stabilise and then look to grow. Then, ultimately, we want to be back in the Premiership.”

Dunfermline’s German investors

Cook revealed that his relationship with Dunfermline’s German investors, DAFC Fussball GmbH, precedes their involvement with the football club.

He offered expert advice to the group after being introduced by a mutual friend and, despite having no idea they would later become colleagues, was immediately won over by their passion, ambition and, crucially, pragmatism.

“I was asked to give my opinion on what the strengths and weaknesses were; where the opportunities were,” recalled Cook.

“What I really like about the group is that they are ambitious, but they have realism. There is no fantasty of: we are going to win the Premiership in the next 24 months.”

He added: “I know how committed they are. That commitment is still there, 100 per cent.”

DAFC Fussball GmbH (L-R) Damir Keretic, Nick Teller, Albrecht Gundermann, Thomas Meggle

However, Cook — who intends to make plans to meet supporters and volunteers in the coming weeks — acknowledges that the travel-based complications of the Covid crisis have been a ‘bugbear’ for DAFC Fussball GmbH.

As such, it became clear that a CEO situated in Scotland was vital.

“They expressed frustrations — particularly around Covid — and not being able to be as hands-on as they would have hoped,” explained Cook.

“That reinforced a feeling that it would be good to have someone on the ground driving this forward. I’m keen to get really stuck into it over the next few weeks and months ahead.”

Ross McArthur hails ‘significant milestone’ as David Cook is unveiled as Dunfermline CEO