IF they were to do a blood test on Dr Alan Mackenzie, they would probably find black and white coursing through his veins.
It is doubtful if there has ever been a record, in administration, anywhere in Australia to match that of the ‘Doc’.
Dr Mackenzie’s life at Southport began early in the 1970s when he started his medical practice on the Gold Coast.
‘Doc’ had been a pretty handy rover with Western Districts in the QAFL, so when he moved down the highway to the then Southport Magpies a remarkable association between man and club was formed.
A knee injury forced the ‘Doc’s premature retirement, but he was far from lost to the code. He was elected Southport president in 1974 – and has held the position every year since.
Including 2011, Dr Mackenzie has been president of the Magpies/Sharks for 38 consecutive years.
That, in itself – an unequalled longevity at the helm of a sporting organisation – perhaps best explains why the Sharks have been so powerful for so long.
But there is even more to the ‘Doc’.
In the early 1990s, as he continued his medical practice and Southport presidential duties, he also went to the Brisbane Bears.
‘Doc’ was club medico from 1992 to 1998 and was also chairman of selectors – which meant an awful lot of kilometres travelling up and down the highway.
And there were also stints as Queensland selector and medico.
THE grandson of German immigrants, the late Wally Fankhauser is one of the major reasons why the Southport Sharks enjoy being the envy of sporting clubs nationwide.
It was his $2 million donation that set up the move of the club from Owen Park in Southport to a ground at Musgrave Hill, one which now bears the name of Wally Fankhauser Sports Reserve.
Fankhauser had been a major financial backer of the club up to then, but there is no question that, without his supreme generosity, what stands on the corner of Olsen and Musgrave Avenues might never have been.
Fankhauser’s early days were spent in Melbourne where the family ran fruit orchards.
Fankhauser sold up in Melbourne in 1968 and moved to Queensland where he soon became a major player in real estate with a couple of land package purchases.
A keen supporter of the Melbourne Demons, Fankhauser could so easily have linked with Surfers Paradise in the old GCAFL. Surfers wore the Demons colours.
Labrador were no chance because Fankhauser hated Richmond, whose colours Labrador wore.
It was a chance meeting with a Southport supporter, who took him to the club’s original watering hole, the Pacific Hotel, when Fankhauser became a Magpie.
The rest is history.
Apart from his generous donation to establish the Fankhauser Reserve set-up, Wally put in plenty of hard work.
Audrey and Wally first joined Southport, then the Magpies, in 1969 and she went on to be heavily involved in the women’s committee running match-day canteens and cooking meals for after-match functions.
She still supports her favourite club, which Wally put so much time and money into.
“The club is in my blood,” says Audrey. “I’m extremely proud of Wally for what he set up.”
Which raises an interesting matter because Audrey did not know her husband had donated $2 million to the Sharks in 1988.
She had been in London visiting youngest son Neville and did not learn of the massive donation until she returned home.
Did she blow up? Did she hit the roof?
“What could I say, it was all too late by then,” says Audrey. “I found out a long time before then that there was no use hitting the roof.
FROM the playing field to club boss – that’s the fascinating journey of current Southport Chief Executive Officer Dean Bowtell.
The son of 1970s ruckman and dual premiership player, big Eddie Bowtell, Dean started with the Southport Sharks as a junior and he made his first-grade debut in 1989.
Bowtell played in the winning grand final side that year and was to go on to play a couple of games for the Brisbane Bears in the AFL reserves.
One feature of his short stint with the Bears was to play on former Carlton firebrand David Rhys-Jones at Princes Park. Bowtell acquitted himself well on that occasion.
Bowtell also played in the South Australian National Football League before he returned to Southport in 1996.
As his playing career wound down, Bowtell started work in the social club, firstly at the reception desk, then pulling beers behind the bar.
After that he moved into the administration side of things, steadily moving up the ladder to a point when he became assistant manager to Paul Wyatt.
In 2008, when the Sharks and Wyatt parted company, Bowtell was elevated to the position of CEO.
As a player, Bowtell stuck to his limitations, nothing fancy but a strong work ethic, yet he was such good value that he eventually found a place in Southport’s Best of 25 Years of State League side, selected in a back pocket.
Bowtell played in four Southport premiership sides (1989, 1997, 1998 and 1999), making the Bowtells the only father-son combination to have won flags at the Magpies/Sharks.