THE AFL has congratulated the 11 community leaders and outstanding contributors to Australian Football, who have been recognised in the Australia Day Honours.

AFL Commission Chairman Richard Goyder said the game acknowledged all those who were recognised for their service to others today, and their work to improve communities around the country, and was delighted that many long-time leaders at grassroots level within our game had been honoured.

"Australian Football, like all sport across Australia, relies heavily on the commitment of volunteers to build our game's participation from the base, and to provide opportunities for those who wish to be part of something bigger than themselves," Mr Goyder said.

"The 2021 Australia Day Honours recognise people within our game who have provided lifetimes of service to junior football for girls and boys, amateur football, country football, metropolitan football, medical advancements within our game, umpiring, administration and the preservation of our game's history.

"Congratulations and thank you to each of these wonderful servants of our game and all of us are looking forward to the return of football shortly, both at elite and community levels."

Mr Goyder said the AFL again wished to congratulate Professor Helen Milroy and Tanya Hosch, who were nominated as Australian of Year for 2021, Carlton's Tayla Harris who was nominated as Young Australian of the Year and Russell Ebert, who was nominated as Local Hero for 2021 from South Australia, and applauded each of the deserving winners named last night at the national ceremony in Canberra.

2021 Australia Day Honours with a contribution to Australian Football:

Recipient of the AM
Lawrence Barnett (service to community football / junior football in Victoria);
Bruce McFarlane (service to business and former SANFL / Port Magpies roles).
Recipient of the AO
Dr Ken Fitch (service to sports medicine, across many sports including Australian football);
Sam Mostyn (service to business and advancement of women. Former AFL Commissioner and current Sydney Swans Board member).
Recipient of the OAM
John Corless (service to community football in Queensland);
Eleni Glouftsis (service to umpiring nationally);
Chris Halbert (service to football history preservation in South Australia);
Fred McMahon (service to country football in Victoria);
George Voyage (service to amateur football in Victoria);
Peter Warner (service to community cricket and football in Victoria);
Alan Wickes (service to VFA and community football in Victoria).