May 18, 2024

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Patsy Reddy is the first woman to head the New Zealand Rugby Union

Patsy Reddy is the first woman to head the New Zealand Rugby Union

Former New Zealand Governor General Patsy Reddy, in a file photo taken in Christchurch © Sangha Vithanagama / AFP / Files

WELLINGTON (AFP) – The New Zealand Rugby Federation appointed former New Zealand Governor-General Patsy Reddy as its president on Wednesday, becoming the first woman to hold the post in the body’s 130-year history.

“It is an absolute honor to be elected president at such an important and exciting time for rugby (in New Zealand),” Reddy, 68, said.

The new president was appointed during a meeting in Auckland, New Zealand, the Rugby Union, founded in 1892, said in a statement.

Reddy will take over from outgoing president Stewart Mitchell, who will step down at the end of January.

Patsy Reddy, best known for her long career as a tax lawyer, joined New Zealand Rugby’s board of directors last April and will serve as the country’s Governor-General from 2016 to 2021, an honorary representative to Elizabeth II.

Women’s rugby is going from strength to strength in New Zealand after beating England 34-31 in the World Cup final and winning a sixth world title at Auckland’s Eden Park last month.

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