Members of the new, streamlined, Welsh Rugby Union Board were appointed at a WRU Council meeting held at Principality Stadium this week.
Gareth Davies retains his position on the Board and is joined by fellow nationally appointed director Anthony Buchanan as modernisation proposals passed by the 320 members, districts and clubs of the WRU at its Annual General Meeting last October begin to take effect.
The main changes reduce the WRU Board in size from 20 to 12 Directors – in accordance with corporate best practice and complying with the ‘Governance and Leadership Framework for Wales’ – underneath which a WRU Council has been established together with two sub-Boards, the Community Game Board (CGB) and the Professional Rugby Board (PRB).
Rob Butcher takes up his position on the WRU Board, as the District director who chairs the CGB, and he is joined by further District representatives Gordon Eynon, Dave Young, Phil Thomas, Chris Morgan and, the newly elected, Hywel Roberts.
Appointed directors Aileen Richards and Tim Griffin are retained as planned and WRU chief executive Martyn Phillips is the 11th member of the Board – with the final spot to be taken up by the chairman of the new PRB, to be confirmed.
Remaining current WRU Board members Brian Fowler, Alan Jones, Geraint Edwards, Ray Wilton, Gwyn Bowden, Bryn Parker, Ian Jeffery and, also new in 2018, Mark Taylor and Chris Jones will revert to the WRU Council when the re-structuring enters its final phase in April.
The changes mean a smaller, more agile governing body will oversee the game in Wales, alongside the Council which will determine and oversee the strategy for the community game.
“I would like to thank our clubs, districts and members once again for the faith and foresight they have shown in allowing these historic and progressive changes to our governance structure to take place,” said WRU chairman Davies.
“There is no doubt that these changes will improve the WRU, providing a governance structure that is modern and fit for purpose.
“We will improve diversity within our governance and better represent the interests of everyone involved in our game.
“A key factor is that the WRU Board is able to take agile decisions and has a broad range of skill sets and experiences, whilst retaining strong links to its membership.
“I welcome the members of the new Board to their honoured positions and believe we have the right people in place and the proper structure behind them to ensure a progressive future for our game.
“These individuals will be empowered to make decisions for the greater good of Welsh rugby whilst protecting the vital link to the member clubs, and will safeguard the position of Welsh rugby within the global sporting landscape for many years to come.”
Existing terms of office, which vary depending upon year of appointment, will be served where applicable before any new elections.