Meritorious Service Award – Robert Brennan

Rob Brennan

Manly Warringah Football Association would like to congratulate Robert Brennan on receiving the MWFA’s Meritorious Service Award for his years of dedication, commitment, and passion that he has given to our footballing community and our game.

Rob served on the Committee of Manly Warringah Football Referees Association (MWFRA) for a decade, in addition to his contribution to our sport as an active referee. He was initially Vice President Juniors from 2009 to 2010 and subsequently served as President of the Association from 2011 to 2018. Rob’s length of service as President is only surpassed by Fred Alder, MWFRA’s Foundation President from 1949 to 1965.

During his time on the committee Rob was a passionate advocate for all referees and consistently demonstrated his commitment to the development of refereeing in Manly Warringah. As President, Rob worked closely with the MWFA to ensure positive outcomes for refereeing and officiating more generally.

One of Rob’s more significant legacies was the engagement of a paid Administrative Officer. This ensured that the MWFRA were able to appoint referees to the games they were assigned to. This, coupled with an investment in a professional appointments system, has resulted in consistently high appointment coverage rates for each subsequent year.

Rob was also successful in negotiating grant funding from the MWFA which contributed towards the cost of new communications equipment for the Association. This has improved the quality of officiating at Premier League and AL1 level (men and women) and this technology is now also being used as a mentoring tool with junior referees.

Another initiative established by Rob was the ‘referee exchange program’ with Ku-ring-gai and District Football Referees Association which saw Premier League referees from each Association gain additional experience in different competitions.

Rob was also heavily involved when the team referee system was implemented in Manly Warringah, as he was keen to ensure those games had an appropriately qualified referee available to officiate. As a result, MWFRA, with some 600 active referees, is one of the largest referee associations in NSW.

To recognise his significant service to MWFRA, Rob was awarded Life Membership of the Association in 2018. This was unanimously supported by all members at the 2018 AGM and there was no shortage of speakers willing to attest to Rob’s positive impact on MWFRA and refereeing more generally.

Outside of his contribution to refereeing, Rob is a long-term member/player with Wakehurst Football Club and has also been involved in coaching and grading at the club from time to time.


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