Tributes paid to former Sunderland AFC executive Grahame McDonnell

Grahame McDonnell, who held senior executive roles at Sunderland, Newcastle United, Darlington and Gateshead Football Clubs, has died at the age of 67.

By Echo Reporter
Monday, 31st January 2022, 10:00 am

Grahame, who resided at Chilton Moor, Houghton-le-Spring, passed away, peacefully at home on Sunday, January 23, with his wife Judy by his side.

He was born in Sunderland to parents William (Bill) and Myra and was married to Judy. Grahame is survived by his wife, his brother Colin and two children, Paul and Ashleigh, both from his previous marriage.

Grahame started his career at Sunderland AFC as Admin Clerk, before progressing to the position of Assistant Commercial Manager in 1977, before leaving the club in 1983 to move to St James’ Park to take up the role of Commercial Manager at Newcastle United.

Grahame McDonnell

In 1992, Grahame returned to Sunderland AFC as Commercial Manager and was subsequently promoted to Commercial Director in 1995. He played a major role in the Stadium of Light development as head of the Project Management Team.

In 2007, Grahame was appointed Commercial Director of Darlington FC where, amongst other achievements, he organised the Elton John Concert, one of biggest ever events to be held in Darlington.

And in 2010 Grahame joined Gateshead FC as Commercial Director where he was part of the team which saw the Club progress to the National League play off final at Wembley in 2014, narrowly missing out on promotion to the Football League.

Grahame retired in 2017.