Harris and Slipper join RUPA board

by RUGBY.com.au staff

Former Reds teammates James Slipper and Mike Harris are the latest additions to the RUPA board.

The pair have been elected as their team board representatives this week, with Slipper replacing departed skipper James Horwill and Harris taking over from NIc Stirzaker, who stepped down after one term.

Horwill had been on the RUPA board since 2010, before leaving Australian Rugby for the English Premiership last season.

RUPA President Benn Robinson has been re-elected for another two-year term, along with Waratahs representative Bernard Foley.

The quartet join Wallabies captain Stephen Moore and Force captain Matt Hodgson as the current Super Rugby players on the board.

RUPA CEO Ross Xenos said the election of Slipper and Harris spoke to the level of respect they have earned in the competition.

“Mike and James have both been highly engaged in RUPA’s activities in recent years and their appointment to the RUPA Board is testament to the esteem in which they’re held within their teams," he said.

"We’re looking forward to leveraging their feedback and getting their fresh perspectives on how we can continue to advance Australian Rugby as a sport of choice for all aspiring athletes.”

The RUPA board will play a critical role in the upcoming Collective Bargaining Arrangement negotiation and Xenos said the retention of Foley and Robinson would only be a positive for that process.

“Both Benn and Bernard have been exceptional contributors to RUPA during their first terms on the Board, which is no great surprise given their experiences, intelligence and integrity as people," he said.

"Their re-election provides RUPA with great stability and continuity, which will be important given negotiations for a new Collective Bargaining Agreement will commence shortly."

The RUPA board consists of 13 members, with Gemma Etheridge and Ed Jenkins flying the flag for the Sevens program and Wallaroos and Sevens star Shannon Parry the other current player.

Chaired by Bruce Hodgkinson SC, Sydney Airport commercial director Sally Fielke and former Queensland Red Adam Wallace-Harrison round out the group.