The International Rugby Board held a workshop in Sydney this week aimed specifically at boosting female participation in the global Rugby disciplinary process.
Following on from the IRB Women's Disciplinary Conference held in Dublin earlier this year, this latest workshop gave the opportunity to female representatives in the southern hemisphere from the legal, Rugby judicial, playing and match officiating fraternity who have been identified as having the potential to perform the key role at domestic, elite and international levels.
Many are already embedded within the judicial systems of their Unions and will be hoping to hone those experiences to expand their practices further afield.
The top candidates will initially be fast-tracked to support flagship IRB tournaments such as Women's Rugby World Cup, IRB Women’s Sevens World Series and Women's internationals for elite level exposure and experience.
IRB Chief Disciplinary Officer Susan Ahern said: “This initiative underscores the IRB’s commitment to promoting the highest-possible standards in this key area of the sport's administration and has been supported by our Member Unions.”
"We have been impressed by the appetite and support for this essential programme. Working in collaboration with our Unions we are continually looking to identify and develop new talent and create the next generation of disciplinary officers and citing commissioners who have the potential to represent the IRB at our showcase women's and men's events."
The workshop took place in the offices of the Australian Rugby Union and the ARU Chief Executive Bill Pulver gave a supportive and inspiring opening address. Those in attendance were: Kim Boreham (Hong Kong), Shao Ing Wang (Singapore), Treena Atoa (Samoa), Helen Morgan (New Zealand), Susan Styants (New Zealand) Farah Palmer (New Zealand), Sarah Fleming (New Zealand), Kim Evans (Australia), Maryjane Crabtree (Australia), Roisin Annesley (Australia), Deb Coulthard (Australia) and Joanne Harrison (Australia).
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