Biographies of AUF Life Members

Biography, Graham Henderson
AUF Life Member

Graham Henderson Joined the AUF in 1977 through his association with the Latrobe University sub Aqua club Victoria, he was a keen SCUBA diver and Spearfisherman who subsequently become an avid player in underwater hockey.

He had an active role in the formation of the Victorian Octopush league and went on to be a founding member of the first AUF Underwater Hockey Commission in 1980.  He has represented Australia as a player on 5 occasions and also was a coach and team manager.

He was instrumental in setting up a referee accreditation system in Australia and co-authoring the first standards and procedures manual for referee training, the same manual that is used throughout the world today for underwater hockey referee training.

Graham started his administrative service in the AUF in 1979 when he became secretary of the AUF Victorian Branch; he went on to hold the positions of Vice President and President.  Also during this time he was the convener of 2 national skindiving championships held in Victoria.

During the eighties he was elected to the position of chairperson of the AUF underwater hockey commission a position which he held for 7 years, he then went on to be the chief referee for the commission for a number of years. During this time he formalised the commission by-laws and was instrumental in obtaining government STEP grants of $200,000.00 for our world champion underwater hockey teams.

In 1995 he focused his attentions on the AUF Federal body becoming Federal Secretary and then becoming the Federal President in 1997.  He oversaw a total restructure of the AUF and rewrote the federal constitution.  He became the public officer of the federation in 2000.  Also in 2000 he was awarded the Australian Government sports medal for his contribution to sport and the community.

He was elected to the position of President of the CMAS (World Underwater Federation) underwater hockey commission in 2005  He also holds the position of tournament director for the CMAS Underwater Hockey Commission and has overseen the running of  4 world underwater hockey championships.

Graham Henderson was awarded life membership of the AUF in 1996 for outstanding service to the federation and the sport of skindiving. He is the current president of the AUF.

Biography, Toni de Fina
AUF Life Member

Toni de Fina was the Federal President of the AUF for 28 years; he was also a some time member of the CMAS governing council. He created with the late Peter Cullen the Federation of Australian Underwater Instructors, for many years the only Australian Diver Instructor organization ultimately subsumed by an international diving instructor organization.

Toni designed and developed the first balanced first stage valves for single hose SCUBA, he also designed and developed diving systems for then developing cultured pearl farms in Northern Territory and Northern Western Australia.

He was instrumental in creating many of the diving standards still used today, he attended the world championships in Croatia (Yugoslavia) as a competitor.  He has continuing involvement in water sports, particularly spearfishing.

On occasion he is invited to prepare opinions on diving accidents and diving equipment and practices for civil court cases and inquests.

He is still diving and actively engaged in water sports.

Biography, Susan Dockar
AUF Life Member

Susan Dockar started Snorkelling and then Spearfishing in the early 1970’s with the St. George Spearfishing & Freediving Club.  She picked up skills from some of the older members as well as being doggedly persistent in learning about the underwater world, both with fish species, habitats and weather conditions. There were many past and present inspirational divers in the club, which encouraged Sue to gain as much knowledge as possible.

An overseas jaunt for six years and then back to the Club and travelling to the many and varied competitions along the NSW coastline. Also competing in many State and National Championships with the highlight being the 1986 National Spearfishing Championships held in Sydney coastal areas and winning the AUF National Ladies Trophy.

She was asked to be part of these 1986 combined National Championships and joined the mixed State Ladies Underwater Hockey comp. which was the beginning of at least 25 years of underwater hockey competitions, representing the Sydney UWH Club, NSW UWH and then an Australian representative member of a Mixed Masters Trans-Tasman team held in Rotorua, N.Z.  Also a year later in 2002 joining the Australian Ladies Masters team at the Underwater Hockey World Championships in Calgary, Canada.

Along the way, also working behind the scenes in administration with the Club and then AUF State Spearfishing Commission, the AUF NSW Underwater Hockey Commission as well as the AUF NSW Snorkel & Coaching Commission. She gained Life Membership of the St. George Spearfishing Club, mid 1980’s, then the AUF NSW Underwater Hockey Commission in the 1990’s and then awarded the Australian Sports Medal in 2000.

She has held and still holds positions with the National Exec. of the AUF including Memberships & Secretary/Treasurer over the past 15 years and gained Life Membership with the AUF in 2009.

She also continues to participate with her St. George Spearfishing & Freediving club at social dives as well as being involved in administration and training.