In 2009, the PFA recognised another outstanding figure from its 15 year history - Craig Foster. Craig joins Kimon Taliadoros and Alex Tobin as being elevated to the status of PFA Champion.
The PFA Rules provide for awards of recognition to be made to PFA Life Members for exceptional leadership and contribution. This form of recognition is named “PFA Champion” and sits as the PFA’s highest honour. Kimon Taliadoros and Alex Tobin are the only PFA servants so far honoured in this way.
Craig Foster was elected to the PFA Executive in 1998 and stepped down in 2002 when he finished his playing career. During this time he was also a Director of PFA Management Limited. Craig was an outstanding contributor to player affairs and represented the PFA with distinction. In 2005, Craig acted as Interim PFA Chief Executive during the negotiation of the Socceroos Collective Bargaining Agreement for the 2006 FIFA World Cup and the organisation of the PFA's membership presence with all establishment A-League clubs.
Craig remains as one of the most successful media personalities in the game and the PFA has initiated the PFA Craig Foster Football Media Scholarships in honour of his contribution to the game in this country. The scholarship/s will be awarded annually to an Australian footballer with ambition to forge a career in the media on the completion of their playing career.
Kimon Taliadoros co-founded the PFA in 1993, acted as the association’s inaugural Chief Executive in 1994 and 1995 (whilst playing in the NSL), served as PFA President from 1995 to 1998 and became the PFA’s inaugural Life Member in 1999. He had an outstanding playing career, illustrated by 9 Socceroos appearances, 244 NSL games, 82 NSL goals and 2 NSL championships (South Melbourne in 1991 and Marconi in 1993).
The PFA Kimon Taliadoros Scholarships will be awarded annually to two players who demonstrate excellence in their development off the field, such as through education, business, charitable or community involvement. One scholarship will recognise excellent achievement by a young player (under 23) still forging and building his or her career as a professional footballer. The second will recognise achievement by a player in preparing for life after football as his or her playing career approaches its end.
In 2009, each PFA Kimon Taliadoros Scholarship will be worth $5,000. The scholarship will be applied to meeting the costs of the player’s education. Where the player has demonstrated excellence in business, with a charity or in the community, the scholarship funds will be applied to the charity or community organisation nominated by the player.
Link to PFA Kimon Taliadoros Scholarships
Alex Tobin OAM is the PFA’s longest serving President (1998 to 2004). He became the first PFA officer to be officially recognised when he received the Order of Australia Medal on Australia Day 2007 for services to Australian football, especially as an international player and through the PFA. He has played more national league games than any Australian footballer, and is the most capped Socceroo. He captained Australia in its 1998 FIFA World Cup qualifying campaign and to second place at the 1997 FIFA Confederations Cup. His NSL career also featured 3 NSL championships (1986, 1992 and 1994) and 2 Joe Marston Medals (1992 and 1994).
The PFA Alex Tobin OAM Medal will be awarded annually by the PFA Executive to a current or former player who demonstrates four outstanding attributes: (1) leadership; (2) achievement as a player; (3) commitment to one’s fellow professionals; and (4) service and dedication to the game.
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