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NZRL adds to management team

NZRL adds to management team

New Zealand Rugby League has bolstered its line-up with the addition of fulltime commercial general manager Sarah Lewis and communications manager Grant Chapman.

Lewis joins NZRL after five years in the United Kingdom, where she worked as the commercial manager for Heathrow Airport Limited’s VIP and private jet operation.

This role encompassed relationship management with the Foreign Commonwealth Office, embassies, royal families, and a select group of celebrities and ultra-high net worth individuals.

It also included projects such as the Queen’s Jubilee and the 2012 Olympic Games.

Before moving to London, Lewis had more than a decade’s experience in various roles in media, sponsorship and events at the NZ Warriors, TVNZ, APN and Telecom, as well as establishing Bang Events Ltd.

Chapman has 30 years in and around the media, including stints with the Auckland Star, North Shore Times, Sport Monthly magazine and TVNZ online.

He spent eight years with Basketball New Zealand as communications manager and national teams general manager, working with the Tall Blacks and Tall Ferns, and last year, served as media manager for the world champion Black Sox men’s softball team.

Both Lewis and Chapman have joined the NZRL executive management team, and both report directly to chief executive Phil Holden.

“With both these appointments, we were looking to lift the expertise and skill set within core roles for NZ Rugby League,” says Holden.

“Strategically, we need to diversify and grow our income streams, which will be the key focus of Sarah’s role.

“We are a national sporting organisation with a multi-layered stakeholder group that also extends across the Tasman, and Grant’s experience will help us strengthen and build those communications platforms.

“His role will report to me, because I believe it’s a core element of our business and organisation.”

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