Ross Hutchinson

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The Honourable
Sir Ross Hutchinson
DFC
Ross Hutchinson.JPG
Hutchinson playing Australian rules football
Member of the Western Australian Parliament
for Cottesloe
In office
1950–1977
Preceded by New creation
Succeeded by Bill Hassell
Personal details
Born (1914-09-10)10 September 1914
Worsley, Western Australia, Australia
Died 19 December 1999(1999-12-19) (aged 85)
North Cottesloe, Western Australia, Australia
Citizenship Australian
Political party Liberal Party of Australia
Spouse(s) Amy
Children Ross, Gail
Occupation Teacher
Awards Distinguished Flying Cross (DFC)
Military service
Allegiance Australia
Service/branch Royal Australian Air Force
Years of service 1942–46
Rank Flight Lieutenant
Unit 96 Squadron
Hon. Sir Ross Hutchinson
Personal information
Position(s) Utility
Playing career1
Years Club Games (Goals)
1935–39 East Fremantle 93
1946 West Perth 16
1947 South Fremantle 18
Total 127
Coaching career
Years Club Games (W–L–D)
1937–39 East Fremantle 70 (48–19–3)
1941–42 1946 West Perth 41 (31–10–0)
1947–49 South Fremantle 62 (48–14–0)
1 Playing statistics correct to the end of 1949.
Source: AustralianFootball.com

Sir Ross Hutchinson, DFC (10 September 1914 – 19 December 1999) was an Australian rules footballer, coach and politician. He played for and coached East Fremantle, West Perth and South Fremantle in the West Australian National Football League (WANFL) before spending 27 years as a member of the Western Australian Legislative Assembly.

Early life[edit]

Hutchinson attended Wesley College.

Football career[edit]

Hutchinson was used in a variety of positions during his football career including centreman, half back and half forward. Hutchinson, who was born in Worsley, won the Lynn Medal as East Fremantle’s ‘Fairest and Best’ in his first two seasons. He captain-coached the club to a premiership in 1937, as a half back flanker. The following two seasons ended in Grand Final losses, both to Claremont. In 1939 he was captain-coach of the Western Australian interstate football team which took on Victoria.

Hutchinson sought a clearance to West Perth for the 1940 season but as it wasn’t granted by East Fremantle he had to sit out the entire season. He was able to coach West Perth in 1941 and not only steered them to that year's premiership but also to the 1942 'under-age' premiership.

When he returned to coaching in 1946 he had received the clearance which meant that he was able to take the field for West Perth and steer the club to a losing Grand Final.

He made the move to South Fremantle in 1947 and was captain-coach of their premiership team that year, kicking two goals in the Grand Final from the half forward flank. In 1948 he again coached the club to a premiership, but he had retired as a player and it was only in an off-field capacity. Hutchinson continued as non playing coach in 1949, his final season. South Fremantle finished in third position, the only time he failed to coach a WANFL club into the Grand Final.

He is one of only two people to have coached three separate WA(N)FL clubs to premierships, with John Todd being the other. Perhaps most remarkably, he steered each of the clubs to premierships in his very first year. He coached 176 WANFL games in total, 72.4% of which were won.

War service[edit]

During the war he fought with the Royal Australian Air Force in Europe as a pilot and was awarded a Distinguished Flying Cross.

Political career[edit]

In 1950 he successfully ran for the newly created seat of Cottesloe in the Western Australian Legislative Assembly for the Liberal Party, holding this seat until his retirement in 1977. After David Brand led the Liberals to victory in 1959, Hutchinson was named Chief Secretary, Minister for Health and Minister for Fisheries, posts he held in both the Brand-Watts and Brand-Nalder Ministries. From May 1974 to February 1977, Hutchinson was speaker of the Western Australian Legislative Assembly.

Honours[edit]

He was knighted for services to the state of Western Australia when he retired from politics.

His contribution to Australian rules football was also honoured, in 2004, when he was inducted into the West Australian Football Hall of Fame.[1]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "West Australian Football Hall of Fame - Playing Record of all Members @ March 2012". West Australian Football Commission. p. 2. Retrieved 7 March 2013. 

External links[edit]

Western Australian Legislative Assembly
New seat Member for Cottesloe
1950–1977
Succeeded by
Bill Hassell
Preceded by
Daniel Norton
Speaker of the
Western Australian Legislative Assembly

1974–1977
Succeeded by
Ian Thompson