FORMER WA Soccer Federation President and Secretary Julius Re, who has served football in Western Australia for the past seven decades, received the Football West Life Member Award at a ceremony at Optus Stadium on October 12.
The 87-year-old received his certificate from former Football West chairman Kevin Campbell. The honour was originally ratified at Football West’s AGM on 20 March and formally presented at the Football Awards night.
Julius was already a Life Member of both the old Australian Soccer Federation and the WA Soccer Federation, which he helped to establish in 1960.
He is also an inductee of the Football Federation Australia Hall of Fame and the Football Hall of Fame WA, of which he was a key member of the inaugural Committee in 1996.
Julius, the youngest of 14 children, was born in Italy and was just a baby when he arrived in Australia in 1933 with his family, who all quickly became involved in local football. Julius’ older brother Frank is credited with helping to start the Perth Azzurri club in 1948.
Julius became secretary of the Azzurri club in 1959 and, following a split from the controlling body WA Soccer Football Association, he was appointed secretary of the newly-formed WA Soccer Federation, which was established as a semi-professional body with eight clubs, including Azzurri.
The move to semi-pro status ended 64 years of amateur football in WA and his initiative was highly praised around Australia.
The visionary Re was also recruited as a foundation member of the Australian Soccer Federation, serving on the national body for 10 years, and he spearheaded Australia’s breakthrough into Asia, gaining entry into the prestigious Merdeka Cup tournament in Malaysia for the WA State team in 1967. They were the first Australian representative side to play in Asia.
Julius was tour leader of the visiting star-studded Manchester United team which played multiple games around Australia and culminated in a breathtaking 7-0 win over WA in front of a record 21,000 crowd at the WACA Ground in 1967.
The dynamic Julius served as president of the SFWA for many years and was also involved in local politics, as a councillor with the Perth City Council.
His daughter Elizabeth, a City of Stirling councillor, is continuing the family links with the Football Hall of Fame WA. She was elected onto the Committee last year.
**Awards named after Football Hall of Fame inductees were also awarded at the Football West function.
Gwelup Croatia’s Ilija Mihalj was named David Schrandt Administrator and Volunteer of the Year.
Perth SC’s Ramon Falzon was named Ron Tindall NPL WA Coach of the Year for the second successive year after his side retained their league title,
Inglewood United’s Chok Dau won the Dylan Tombides Young Player of the Year Award.
PIC ONE: Julius Re shows off his Life Member award. PIC TWO: Julius receives the award from Kevin Campbell. PIC THREE; Julius acknowledges the applause. PIC FOUR: Julius and daughter Elizabeth.