Board

Dr Deidre Anderson AM

Chair

In 2019, Dr. Deidre Anderson became the first female Chair in the history of the Rugby League Players' Association (RLPA)

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Dr Deidre Anderson AM

Chair

In 2019, Dr. Deidre Anderson became the first female Chair in the history of the Rugby League Players' Association (RLPA) following the resignation of Russell Adams.

Deidre first joined the RLPA Board of Directors in 2016.

The former Deputy Vice Chancellor at Macquarie University has a wealth of experience across a range of relevant areas including governance, sport, wellbeing and education.

Previously, Deidre has held senior roles within the private sector and Federal and Local government and has held Executive positions both at international and national level within elite sports. She has been acknowledged worldwide for her contribution to elite athletes, and has a lifelong commitment to supporting the development of young people.

She has been a recipient of a Paul Harris Fellow for her contribution to international relations, a recipient of the Princeton International Business Leaders award, recipient of the Eunice Gill Coach Education award, an honorary member of the Golden Keys International Honour Society and a Justice of the Peace. She is the co-author of a number of books and has published extensively in the areas of athlete transition. Deidre holds a Masters, Post Graduate Degrees and Bachelor of Arts and has completed a PhD at Macquarie University.

In 2022, Dr. Anderson was appointed a Member of the Order of Australia (AM) in the Queen’s Birthday Honours List for her significant service to tertiary education, and to sports administration.

Clint Newton

CEO & Managing Director

Clint Newton was appointed Chief Executive Officer at the Rugby League Players’ Association (RLPA) in 2020.

Clint’s involvement with the RLPA

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Clint Newton

CEO & Managing Director

Clint Newton was appointed Chief Executive Officer at the Rugby League Players’ Association (RLPA) in 2020.

Clint’s involvement with the RLPA dates back to his time as an NRL contracted player, where amongst other key achievements he played a key role in the negotiation of the 2013-17 Collective Bargaining Agreement and was elected to the role of General President in 2013.

Making his NRL debut in 2001 for the Newcastle Knights, Clint played 273 first grade games across the Knights, Melbourne Storm, Hull Kingston Rovers and Penrith Panthers.

Clint also represented the Prime Ministers XIII in 2005, Country Origin in 2007 and played for the United States of America in the 2013 Rugby League World Cup.

Outside of his professional Rugby League career, Clint is a passionate advocate for gender equality, respectful relationships and the rights of women and child through his ambassadorial roles with White Ribbon Australia and Australian Childhood Foundation

Following his retirement from professional Rugby League in 2015 and a period as Chair of the RLPA, Clint successfully transitioned into his current role on the Association’s executive team and has worked to advance many areas in the game on behalf of players.

Clint is co-chair of the Workloads and Balance Committee, is the players’ representative on the Competition Committee and has led several key projects in the International space, including advancing minimum standards across all Nations.

In March 2020, Clint was appointed CEO of the RLPA, replacing the outgoing Ian Prendergast.

Clint was also named a Life Member of the RLPA in 2019.

Daly Cherry-Evans

General President

Daly is the General President of the Rugby League Players' Association.

The Manly Sea Eagles skipper was appointed to the position

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Daly Cherry-Evans

General President

Daly is the General President of the Rugby League Players' Association.

The Manly Sea Eagles skipper was appointed to the position at the 2021 Annual General Meeting, moving into the role following the retirement of Cameron Smith.

Daly was first appointed as a casual vacancy to the RLPA Board of Directors in December 2019 alongside Sia Soliola and Dale Copley, before being formally elected at the 2020 AGM.

Another member of the Player Advisory Group to progress through to the role of RLPA Director, Daly is also the current captain of the Queensland Maroons and first represented Australia in 2011.

The Mackay Brothers junior also won a premiership in his debut NRL season (2011) with Manly Warringah.

Speaking after his appointment as RLPA General President, Daly said: “I’m definitely honoured to appointed General President and to be able to do this job for the playing group,” Cherry Evans said.

“It’s a nice feeling and I’ve been involved with the RLPA for a little bit now, so this is an elevated role that I am taking on.

“I’m looking to help out the team at the RLPA and voice any matters that the players feel they need to get across.

“The RLPA has certainly grown a lot in recent times but I still think the best work is ahead for us.

“As the General President it would be nice to have not just my teammates at Manly, but players at other clubs, able to rely on me to push forward and be that voice.”

Chelsea Lenarduzzi

Director

Brisbane Broncos forward Lenarduzzi is the second NRLW player to join the RLPA Board along with Hannah Southwell when she

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Chelsea Lenarduzzi

Director

Brisbane Broncos forward Lenarduzzi is the second NRLW player to join the RLPA Board along with Hannah Southwell when she was appointed as a casual vacancy in June 2022.

On her appointment to the RLPA Board of Directors, Ms. Lenarduzzi said:

“I’m incredibly proud to be appointed to the RLPA Board of Directors as the second female player alongside Hannah. To be joining the RLPA Board at such an exciting and pivotal time for women’s rugby league is a huge responsibility that I don’t take lightly.”

“I want to help secure the best terms and conditions for female athletes in our region, because this is rugby league’s opportunity to be progressive and make rugby league the sport of choice for girls and women in our region.”

Chelsea Lenarduzzi is a member of the inaugural Women's Player Advisory Group, formed in 2019.

Wade Graham

Director

Wade was appointed to the Rugby League Players' Association (RLPA) Board of Directors in May 2019, emerging from the Player

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Wade Graham

Director

Wade was appointed to the Rugby League Players' Association (RLPA) Board of Directors in May 2019, emerging from the Player Advisory Group and Delegate pathways.

Currently the co-captain of the Cronulla Sharks, Wade has played over 240 NRL games since making his debut in 2008 and represented Australia, New South Wales, City Origin and the Indigenous All Stars.

Wade was a member of the premiership-winning Cronulla side in 2016 and was a member of the victorious World Cup winning Australian side in 2017.

Off the field, Wade has completed a Certificate IV in Fitness and a Certificate IV in Frontline Management.

At the time of his appointment to the RLPA Board of Directors, the former Penrith Panther said: “This is a great opportunity for me to be at the forefront of representing players, while also ensuring our partnership with the game continues to develop."

“Personally, I see this as a wonderful opportunity to take the next step in my development as a leader in the game and ensure that I continue to advance my skillset off the field.”

Hannah Southwell

Director

Hannah Southwell was formally elected to the RLPA Board at the 2022 Annual General Meeting.

Hannah was previously appointed to the

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Hannah Southwell

Director

Hannah Southwell was formally elected to the RLPA Board at the 2022 Annual General Meeting.

Hannah was previously appointed to the RLPA Board as a casual vacancy in July 2021, becoming the first-ever female player to join the RLPA Board of Directors.

The Sydney Roosters NRLW star has represented New South Wales and Australia previously, and in 2020 won the prestigious Players' Champion honour. 

“I’m proud to join the RLPA’s Board and be able to represent my fellow players at this level,” she said about her appointment.

“Establishing a collective agreement for NRLW players is one goal I would love to help achieve through my position with the RLPA.

“However, I also look forward to having a voice on a wide range of matters across the game and continuing my own professional development along the way.”

Hannah is also a member of the inaugural Women's Player Advisory Group in 2021.

Josh Hodgson

Director

Canberra Raiders star Josh Hodgson joined the Men's Player Advisory Group in 2021.

Hodgson was officially elected to the RLPA Board

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Josh Hodgson

Director

Canberra Raiders star Josh Hodgson joined the Men's Player Advisory Group in 2021.

Hodgson was officially elected to the RLPA Board of Directors in March 2022.

“I am thrilled and proud to be elected to the RLPA Board of Directors. I am grateful to the playing group for trusting in me to represent them at this level," said Josh Hodgson after his election to the Board.

“This is going to be an important year for the NRL and NRLW playing groups with the upcoming negotiations of the next collective bargaining agreement. Our goal is to secure the best terms and conditions ever for players and I also look forward to having a voice on a wide range of matters.”

Pippa Leary

Director

Following on from her appointment to the Rugby League Players' Association (RLPA) Advisory Board in 2016, Pippa was officially appointed

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Pippa Leary

Director

Following on from her appointment to the Rugby League Players' Association (RLPA) Advisory Board in 2016, Pippa was officially appointed an RLPA Director in May 2019.

Pippa is the Commercial Director of Digital Sales for the Nine Network and has a wealth of experience in the digital media industry, including previous senior executive roles at Fairfax Media and as the CEO of Fairfax-Nine programmatic exchange APEX.

Pippa also has previous experience serving as a director with companies such as Solstice Media and Equip Super.

At the time of her appointment to the RLPA Board of Directors, Leary said: “Issues of player well-being, transition to retirement and cultural change have long been of interest to me during my time on the RLPA Advisory Board."

“I hope that during my tenure on the RLPA Board I will be able to contribute further value to these discussions.

“I am also looking forward to taking a more active role in helping the RLPA and NRL create their joint commercial strategy, especially as it navigates a digital future.

“Past experience on the boards of financial institutions and media companies will also allow me to bring knowledge and guidance regarding governance and strategy formulation, as well as commercial operations insight to the RLPA Board.”

Christian Welch

Director

Melbourne Storm forward Christian Welch was appointed to the Board of the Rugby League Players' Association (RLPA) at the 2021

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Christian Welch

Director

Melbourne Storm forward Christian Welch was appointed to the Board of the Rugby League Players' Association (RLPA) at the 2021 Annual General Meeting.

Christian progressed through the player leadership pathways as a member of the Player Advisory Group in recent years and an RLPA Delegate at the Storm.

“Being able represent my fellow players as a Director of our Association is something I’m really excited about,” Welch said at the time of his appointment to the Board of Directors.

“I’ve been involved with the RLPA for some time now and I am really passionate about the movement.

“I understand how important it is to have a strong Association behind us and the need for players to have a seat at the table when key decisions across the game are being made.

“I believe I can add value in advancing the interests of players through this new role, while also continuing to learn and develop professionally.”

Christian made his NRL debut for the Storm in 2015 and made his representative debut for Queensland in the 2019 State of Origin series.

The Gladstone and Eastern Suburbs Tigers junior played in the 2016 and 2018 NRL Grand Finals. Christian was also part of the 2017 premiership-winning Melbourne squad.

Christian has graduated from the University of Melbourne with a Commerce degree and is currently studying my Masters of Business Administration (MBA) at UNSW.

The prop forward also was among a group of players that travelled to Harvard University to complete a Certificate in Negotiation and Leadership.

Stuart Nelson

Director

Stuart Nelson was appointed to the RLPA Board of Directors in June 2022 as a casual vacancy.

Mr. Nelson is a

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Stuart Nelson

Director

Stuart Nelson was appointed to the RLPA Board of Directors in June 2022 as a casual vacancy.

Mr. Nelson is a veteran corporate advisor with over 30 years experience leading large, complex organisations and providing advisory and management services in the technology, funds management, biotech and sustainability sectors. He has held senior positions at leading financial services multi-nationals HSBC and Allianz.

On his appointment to the RLPA Board of Directors, Mr. Nelson said:

“I am absolutely delighted to have been invited to join the RLPA Board at this critical time and look forward to working with Clint and his team to not only advance and promote the interests of the players, but also the game that we love.”

Dr. Deidre Anderson, Chair of the RLPA Board of Directors, praised the experience and expertise that Mr. Nelson bring to the Board:

“Stuart is an outstanding appointment for the RLPA Board. His financial markets and governance expertise will elevate the rigour to our process and capabilities to support our members. Stuart will be an invaluable asset as the RLPA negotiates its new and improved CBA for both the men and women’s games, but beyond his input to the CBA negotiations his passion for rugby league, strong corporate governance and fairness make him an outstanding addition.”

Steven Harker AM

Director

Steven Harker was formally elected to the RLPA Board of Directors at the 2022 Annual General Meeting.

Mr. Harker was previously

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Steven Harker AM

Director

Steven Harker was formally elected to the RLPA Board of Directors at the 2022 Annual General Meeting.

Mr. Harker was previously appointed to the RLPA Board as a casual vacancy in July 2021.

Steve Harker is currently a Director of The Banking and Finance Oath (BFO), a Board member of the ASX Thomson Reuters Charity Foundation and The Hunger Project Australia.

Mr. Harker was appointed Chairman of the Investment and Executive Committees at Future Now Capital in 2020 and was Non-Executive Director, Westpac Group until 2021. Prior to that, he was Vice-Chairman of Morgan Stanley Australia from October 2016 to February 2019 and Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer of Morgan Stanley Australia from 1998 to 2016.

In 2022, Mr. Harker was appointed a Member of the Order of Australia (AM) in the Queen’s Birthday Honours List for his services to banking and the community.