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Welsh Rugby Union appoints Richard Collier-Keywood as first independent chair

15 Jun 2023 2 minute read
Richard Collier Keywood. Photo UK Government

Richard Collier-Keywood has been appointed as the Welsh Rugby Union’s first independent chair.

Collier-Keywood, a former senior adviser to the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, will succeed Ieuan Evans in July.

His appointment means that former First Minister Carwyn Jones was unsuccessful in his bid for the post despite being interviewed for the role.

Collier-Keywood becomes the first appointed – rather than elected – WRU chair after a major overhaul of the organisation’s governance was voted through by its member clubs at an extraordinary general meeting in March.

“I am absolutely delighted to accept the role as chair of the WRU,” said Collier-Keywood, a former global vice-chair of PwC (PricewaterhouseCoopers).

“Welsh rugby has always been hugely emotional for me and it is such a strength that there are millions of us that care and feel the same way.”

Taking shape

Collier-Keywood will be joined on the WRU’s new board by fellow independent non-executive director Alison Thorne.

Thorne, who was short-listed for the independent chair role, is currently chair of the National Dance Company Wales.

Evans added: “Our new-look board is beginning to take shape.

“I have every confidence that we will have the diversity of talent and skill-set to ensure our place in the elite women’s and men’s game and to continue to grow and support all sections of our community game, both male and female, when the process is complete.

“Welsh rugby will be rightly buoyed by these two new appointments, but these are just the first steps.

“Next, we will find our permanent CEO and fill the remaining INED position and vacancies.

“We will assemble a board which stands up to scrutiny and meets the highest standards of the rugby world and one that will make the nation proud in the years ahead.”

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