The Rugby League World Cup has been strengthened by three significant appointments to the RLWC2021 Board.
Lord Jonathan Caine, who served as a special adviser to six Secretaries of State for Northern Ireland, will become the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS) representative on the tournament’s Board.
Sue Catton will be the UK Sport representative and was Head of Events and Competitions at England and Great Britain Hockey, delivering four major European and World level back-to-back events, culminating in the successful Women’s Hockey World Cup in 2018.
Previously Sue was the Sport Manager for both Hockey and Wheelchair Rugby at the London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games and has also held Non-Executive Director positions with the International Hockey Federation and England Hockey.
The International Rugby League representative is Emma Young, who is an independent technology consultant and specialises in enabling businesses and organisational change through the provision of technology solutions.
Emma joined the London Organising Committee of the Olympic and Paralympic Games in 2007 and as Head of Telecommunication Services led the staff, partners, and suppliers responsible for the strategy, design and delivery of technology infrastructure and telecoms services critical to the successful operation of the London 2012 games and has subsequently been an advisor to the International Olympic Committee.
The RLWC2021 Board will also be supported by the strategic advice of Hitesh Patel, Head of International Sport, Major Sports Events at DCMS, who joins the Board as an observer.
The new Board members join the independent directors – Stuart Cain (CEO of Warwickshire County Cricket Club), Stacey Knight (Commercial & Marketing Director at CSM Live), Mike Perls MBE (CEO of MC2) and Robert Sullivan (CEO of the Football Foundation). Karen Moorhouse (Chief Regulatory Officer at the RFL) completes the Board as the final nominated director.
Chris Brindley MBE, the RLWC2021 chair, said: “We welcome three highly committed and talented Board members at this crucial moment on the road to successfully delivering the biggest and best ever Rugby League World Cup.”
“Our recent independent Board evaluation showed that RLWC2021 is a trustworthy organisation with high integrity and the Board has played a key supporting role in building a huge amount of credibility over the last five years. We know our new members will add to the strength of the organisation.”
Lord Caine, the newly appointed DCMS representative, said: “Fifty years after I attended my first Rugby League game as a boy in Leeds, I am absolutely thrilled to be joining the board of the Rugby League World Cup 2021. For me Rugby League is, and always will be, the greatest game.
“I look forward to working with the rest of a fantastic team to deliver the biggest, best and most diverse tournament in Rugby League history, that will do our sport proud, enthuse our country and play a major role in our post pandemic recovery.”
UK Sport representative Sue Catton added: “I’m thrilled and very proud to join the Board of RLWC2021 as the UK Sport representative at such an exciting time. The Power of Together is clearly evident in all the preparations to date and I look forward to contributing to this world class and truly inclusive event.”
Emma Young, the International Rugby League representative, concluded: “I am delighted to join the RLWC2021 Board as the IRL independent director. The tournament presents a wonderful opportunity to showcase the growth and inclusivity of the international game on a global scale.”