What would you do if you were a life-time servant of the Redland Sharks and at age 73 you got a phone call from your old club asking for help? If you’re Col Tobiasen there’s only one answer. Of course, you go back.
In 2023, a wonderful supporter of Australian Football in Queensland for more than 65 years with a special passion for the Sharks, Tobiasen did just that. He returned the club where he’d spent a large part of his football journey. Not only did he re-join the committee but he took back the role of President that he had filled so capably in years past.
It’s another chapter in a lifetime football journey that began after the Tobiasen family moved from Sydney to Brisbane when he was one. It was sparked at Greenslopes State School when he was invited to play aged “eight or nine” and quickly saw him join Coorparoo in the Under 10s.
He represented Queensland at Under-17 level alongside original Hall of Famer Danny Brennan, made his QAFL debut at 17 and played “about 70” senior games from 1966-70 including three grand finals – a win over Mayne in 1968 and losses to Wilston-Grange in 1969 and Sandgate in 1970.
A knee injury prior to the start of the 1971 season ended his playing career. Newly married with a young child, living at Capalaba and working two jobs to support his family, he was just a fan but only for five years.
In 1976 he accepted the coaching job of the then Victoria Point Sharks Under-15s after they’d had five different coaches the year before. He was asked to help out and, in a pointer to what would happen often through his long love affair with football, he couldn’t say no.
In 1977 he joined the Victoria Point committee and after the President passed away he stepped up to the top job from 1978-82. He was the club delegate to the then SQAFA (South Queensland Australian Football Association) from 1980, and in 1983 he began a 10-year stint on the SQAFA Management Committee that was rewarded with life membership.
From 1992 he sat on the newly-formed BAFL (Brisbane Australian Football League) committee, and in 2000, when Victoria Point who later to become the Redland Bombers, were elevated to the State League competition he returned to the club where his administrative journey had started.
In 1998-99 he presented the BAFL premiership cup to Redland – a rare and special moment for a man who served both parties wonderfully and selflessly for so long.
From 2003 he served on the Redland committee, and in 2005 he found himself President – again. He couldn’t say no, sharing the ride through the birth of the NEAFL (North-East Australian Football League) in 2009, the transformation from one conference to two conferences, and the overall of the growth of the competition until it was hurriedly shut down during the Covid Pandemic in 2020.
Football was part of a twin love affair for the ever-humble and always-diligent Carlton supporter who worked for 20 years in the shipping industry before moving into football administration. While admitting to a side interest in the Bears/Lions in later years, strong enough for him to see live the Lions’ first flag in 2001 and their fourth grand final in 2004, his number one love was always his wife Pam. She started and ran the ever-popular bingo nights at Redlands to raise money for the football club and shared his football journey until she passed away in 2020.