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About The Association

September 6, 2016 7:15 PM

History of the Association

The Association was formed in 1953.


Committee Structure 2018


Barry Capuano

Deputy President

Darryl Gerlach


David Collins

Assistant Secretary   

Kelvin Steel


Don Gross

Assistant Treasurer  

Gary Grainger


Graham Leydin

Barry Besanko

Howard Staehr

Joel Reynolds

Jo-Anne Albert

Nick O’Brien 



The Senior Office Bearers of the Association since the formation of the Association in 1953 have been:


Harry Hunter  


Frank Maher   


Les Griggs      


Bob Drummond


Jack Hickey    


Ted Leehane  


Kevin Parks    


Graeme Schultz


Barry Capuano





Pop (H) Lee


Alby Jacobson


Bill Gnaden


Darren Rickey


Barry Capuano


David Collins 



Duffy (E) Plummer


Wally Collis


Keith Waters  


Darren Rickey


Jerry Backhouse


Don Gross


The Association became an Incorporated Association in 2011.

Relationship with Essendon Football Club

The EFCPP&OA has always had a great relationship with the Essendon Football Club and on many occasions have worked together to achieve specific outcomes.

Some major joint programs include:

EFC Past Players Foundation Trust

In 2004 the EFCPP&OA approached the EFC with a proposal to jointly develop a past players foundation trust to assist past players who were suffering financial hardship and were not able to maintain their normal living standards. The EFC agreed to this proposal and the EFC Past Players Foundation Trust was formed, with each group donating $25,000 to initiate the fund. The topping up of this fund, on a year by year basis, is provided by profits generated by the Dick Reynolds Club functions. Since the start of the EFC Past Players Foundation Trust, in excess of 25 past players and their immediate families have been assisted and will no doubt require further funds in the future..

It is the intent of our Association to continue to develop this fund. In this respect, it would be our intention to add more funds to the trust from our own resources, and in particular from income generated from specific events each year, e.g. Annual Golf Day.

We would always welcome any assistance from supporters should they wish to contribute to the fund, by contacting Barry Capuano on

The EFCPP&OA are extremely grateful to the EFC and Committee of the Dick Reynolds Club for their great ongoing support of the EFCPP&OA.

The current Trustees of the EFC Past Players Foundation Trust are Ray Horsburgh, Greg Brown and Barry Capuano.

Debut Jumper Presentation Program 

The EFC initiated the presentation of Debut Jumpers for all living past players of the Club in 2003.

The Debut Jumper represents an historical and performance record of each individual. The reference to Debut actually refers to the number that the player was registered with the VFL/AFL, and as only 1,150 players (to the end of 2017) have represented the EFC since the formation of the VFL in 1897, it is easy to understand why the recipients so highly regard these presentations, particularly as this is unique within the AFL industry.

Other information on the jumper includes: Years played, games played, playing number and any milestones, e.g. playing in a premiership team, best & fairest etc.

Of the 1,150 players who have represented the EFC to the end of 2016 (excluding the 33 still playing):

116 (10.4%), played only one game.

41 Games is the average number of games played by all past players.

The average playing careers of past players is 3.6 years.

In 2008 the EFCPP&OA became directly involved with organizing Debut Jumper presentations, and as part of this program is actively attempting to locate every living past player to ensure that their jumper is presented as soon as practical.

The intent of the Debut Jumper program was to present the jumpers to players at least three (3) years after their retirement from AFL football.

Past Player Welfare and Assistance Program

During 2015, the Association presented a Discussion Paper to the club regarding the development of a past player welfare and assistance program, seeking their assistance in utilizing club facilities to help in developing this program. The intent of this program is to develop a wide range of networking opportunities available to past players following their playing days, and could cover any field available to them through our own member base, Coterie group members and various major supporters of the club, including club Sponsors. This program is now fully operational and we believe that this program will be of great benefit to all past players and will lead the way in the AFL competition.

The Association now has a work station at the club, which enables a close working relationship with club staff in developing this program.

Life Members of the Association

The following are current Life Members of the Association:

Kevin Parks    


Graeme Schultz


Ian Browning 


Peter Harrington


Albert Wilson


Gary Grainger


Alan McGillivray


Barry Capuano


Bruce Reid


Ian Reynolds


Emil Eugene


Colin Hooper 


Don Gross