Posted in Featured News , Front Page News , People of the SMJFL

Russell McMurray has been honoured as the first ever Life Member of the SMJFL at last night’s Annual General Meeting.

The accolade comes just a month after McMurray was presented with a prestigious AFL Merit Award – the highest award that can be bestowed upon a community football volunteer – at the AFL Victoria Community Football Awards.

The presentation of inaugural Life Membership is a just reward for McMurray as he has been perhaps the most influential contributor to the survival and success of the SMJFL.

During his time serving on the then Moorabbin Saints Junior Football League Board and Executive (including stints as President and Secretary), McMurray battled stiff opposition and heavy criticism to help steer the League through one of its most turbulent periods, instigating change that has seen the competition flourish.

A hostile takeover proposal in 2010 had the potential to divide the League into two or three smaller, less viable competitions. But McMurray’s strong advocacy for change and steadfast opposition to the splitting of the League saw the creation of the professionally-run competition that the SMJFL is today.

This tumultuous period has defined McMurray’s remarkable legacy in junior football as it is doubtful the League would have survived and prospered the way it has without his effort and sacrifice.

A tireless devotee to junior football, McMurray also put in a mountain of work over five seasons of involvement with his son’s club, the Cheltenham Panthers, and even held positions at both club and League level simultaneously from 2007 to 2009.


To read the full Russell McMurray story CLICK HERE.


Russell McMurray (left) receives his Life Membership from SMJFL Chairman Peter Ryan.

Russell McMurray (left) receives his Life Membership from SMJFL Chairman Peter Ryan.