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New Magpie in nest

Friday, 9th November, 2018

Newly-elected Central Football Club president Jonah Smith. PICTURE: Tyler Hannigan Newly-elected Central Football Club president Jonah Smith. PICTURE: Tyler Hannigan

By Tyler Hannigan

The Central Football Club elected a new president at their recent annual general meeting with Jonah Smith set to take on the role for 2019.

Having already appointed their senior, reserve and women’s coaches, the club presidency was the last major position to be filled.

Although he did not play for Central, Smith’s relationship with the club is through close friends that have or are now playing which led to his involvement.

“I have a lot of friends in the football club,” Smith explained.

“And we knew that the previous board were stepping down. We wanted to get some guys together to make sure that the club continues to be run well and successful in the years to come.

“Ultimately I was approached (to stand for president) and I was open to the idea and so I put my nomination forward, along with six others, so we’ve basically got a new board and hopefully that translates to success on and off the field.”

While Smith may not have a heap of experience in football, he does at board level.

“I’ve come on board as an administrator,” Smith said.

“I’ve been tied up with Lifeline Broken Hill Country to Coast, I’ve been the chair of that board for a number of years and on the board for five or six years and with that background I felt comfortable stepping into this role.”

Jarrod Hinton, Smith’s predecessor, did not reapply having taken over in the wake of brother-in-law and then club president Gavin Blows’ tragic passing in late 2017. 

Smith will be Central’s fifth president in three years with Geoff Hodgins, Craig Gilby, the late Blows and most recently Hinton having filled the role. 

While there has been a great deal of turnover at board level, the same can be said within the football department. Recently appointed senior coach Jarred Paull is the fourth man to hold the position since 2016.

Reducing that turnover is a goal of the new board.

“That certainly is our aim to get that stability,” Smith said.

“And the guys that have come on board, I think we’ll have that. Dinny Reardon has come on as vice president, Jason Backo as treasurer, Tania Roberts as secretary plus Kieran Ralph, Layne Ralph and Lynda Derham as well.

“Lynda as the team manager will bring a lot to the board, as will Kieran who is still going to be playing reserves and will bring that connection to the players.

“I think we have a pretty good makeup of the board which should hold us in good stead.”

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