Jan 30 2013
Former Football Association chief executive Brian Barwick has been appointed as the new non-executive chairman of the Rugby Football League.
Barwick, whose previous positions also include that of controller of sport at ITV and head of television sport at the BBC, takes over from former Manchester United director Maurice Watkins, who stood in as interim chairman following the departure to the All England Club of Richard Lewis last May.
Barwick will formally take up his part-time post on Friday but attended his first meeting of the RFL's independent board of directors on Wednesday.
"I am absolutely delighted to accept the position as the new chairman of the RFL," Barwick said.
"Rugby league is a sport I have a genuine respect and affection for and I am determined to spread the word about what a great sport rugby league is, especially at this exciting time when we host the Rugby League World Cup in England and Wales.
"The RFL is a widely-respected governing body, with an exceptionally strong management team which has produced outstanding results over the last decade and I am very much looking forward to joining the board and working with my new colleagues to take this great game forward."
RFL chief executive Nigel Wood said: "I am delighted that we have been able to attract a sports administrator of Brian's calibre. His track record speaks for itself.
"Brian's considerable experience will help us take the game forward as rugby league prepares to embark on the most important year in its history with a competitive Super League, a new-look Championships and, of course, the Rugby League World Cup in England and Wales this autumn."
Wood said that Watkins will keep his place on the independent board for the rest of his term of office.
Barwick was FA chief executive from 2005-08 where he oversaw the completion of the new Wembley Stadium, launched the Respect campaign and was involved in the appointment of England's senior coach on two occasions. He was also a board member of Wembley Stadium Ltd and FIFA's Legal Committee and UEFA's National Teams Committee.