The West Adelaide Football Club wishes to congratulate two new recipients of Life Membership, Bernie Conlen and Josh Schiller. Bernie and Josh were presented with Life Membership at the AGM held Wednesday 9th February 2022.
A past player of reserves and league, Premiership player (1983), foundation member of the Past Players & Officials group and member of the Westonians Coterie Group, Bernie is beyond deserving of Life Membership.
President Murray Forbes highlighted Bernie’s dedication and support of the Club, “This gentleman lead the charge to support Mark Mickan upon his diagnosis of Parkinson’s disease, and while Mark and his family were in Melbourne for treatment, Bernie coordinated businesses, tradespeople and volunteers who donated time, labour and products to assist in a whole home renovation for the Mickan family. He works tirelessly for the Club and is indeed a worthy recipient of Life Membership.”
“When I was first told about this I was very emotional… this Club means a hell of a lot to me. I have been so lucky, not only to play in a premiership side but to be surrounded by all the great people throughout the years from my teammates to the support staff and everyone in the committees. Every person here means so much to me.” Bernie spoke of the significance of this honour upon receiving Life Membership at the AGM.
Murray proceeded to announce the next recipient, “Our second recipient tonight has rendered invaluable service to the Club both on and off the field for the past 15 years. He has represented Westies in 230 SANFL games, and began his journey as a 16 year old in Waikerie. He developed his game winning the Best & Fairest for the Under 18’s in just his second year with our Club. In 2010, he was chosen to represent SA in the Under 18’s National Championships. He won the Reserves Best & Fairest back to back in 2012 and 2013. He became a regular in the League side and certainly became a fan favourite. He was a member of our 2013 Foxtel Cup winning side as well as our drought breaking 2015 Premiership side. Off the field he has been a fantastic ambassador for the Club, donating his time regularly to such activities as our Elite Development Program and volunteered his time with many of our community partners. It gives me great pleasure to announce our second recipient of Life Membership this evening is Joshua Schiller.”
Josh expressed his gratitude to the Club and in particular the unwavering support of his family that allowed him to be part of our Club for such an extended period of time. “It’s an honour to receive Life Membership with the West Adelaide Football Club. I still remember my first year in the Under 17s driving down with my dad, I never imagined in the 14 years that followed, it would be my home. I have been very fortunate over the years, getting to know a lot of great people in this Club both on field and off field who impacted my journey along the way…I want to thank my parents who sacrificed so much to allow me to live out my football dream. They drove me down every training and game and then when I moved down they helped me out financially while I juggled football, university and work, and all of this while rarely missing a game. I can’t thank them enough for their love and support…”
The West Adelaide Football Club is proud to honour such dedicated contributors of our Club. Thank you Bernie and Josh.