Australia CEO Kate Palmer and AIS CEO Peter Conde have challenged 33 women
embarking on ground-breaking leadership programs to use the experience to help
drive greater diversity in Australian sport.

Australia and the AIS have announced successful applicants for two new Talent
Programs aimed at addressing the under-representation of female sport
executives and high performance coaches in Australian sport. The programs are funded
in partnership with the Office for Women.

Seventeen coaches
and 16 executives have been selected from more than 250 applicants to
participate in the intensive leadership development programs that will run
concurrently in 2019.

Excitingly for rowing, two members of Rowing Australia staff have been accepted to the leadership programs. Senior Women’s Coach at the Hancock Prospecting Women’s National Training Centre, Ellen Randell, joins the High Performance Coaching Program, while Rowing Australia Chief Commercial Officer, Katherine Savage, will take part in the Executive Program.

Coach Ellen Randell (centre) has been accepted on the new AIS High Performance Coaching Program (Image Copyright Rowing Australia)

“I’m excited to be involved with the High Performance Coaching Program and to be engaging with such a strong diverse group of female coaches.

“It is important that we see the number of elite female coaches in rowing increase. This program is a fantastic opportunity for growth and development for me personally, but ultimately I hope that the learnings I take from the program are ones that I can take back not only to my role at Rowing Australia but also to the wider Australian rowing coaching community,” said Randell.

Palmer says
advances continue to be made for elite female athletes in Australia, including
some sports making a commitment last month to take steps towards pay equity.
But Palmer said the lack of opportunity for women in other areas of sport,
particularly executive and coaching positions, was intolerable.

“Despite the
recent appointment of female CEOs in sports such as basketball, equestrian and
water polo, of the 63 sports we fund, only 15 – less than a quarter – have
female CEOs,” Palmer said. “Sport Australia will continue to advocate for
progress. We will not turn a blind eye to what is an unacceptable and systemic imbalance.

“These new
Talent Programs have been designed to shift mindsets and behaviours in
Australian sport. We want participants in these programs to be part of that
transformation. These programs will focus on building the personal skills of
participants so they can maximise their professional development and drive
change as influential leaders in sport.

Executive Program in particular draws women who already have a strong
background in sports administration, but also women from other industries who
want to make a difference in sport.”

announcement of the programs coincides with the third annual Women’s High
Performance Coaching Forum being held at the AIS today and being attended by
more than 30 coaches.

Of the 160
coaches accredited at the 2016 Rio Olympic Games, only 15 – or nine per cent –
were female. That was down from 12 per cent at the 2012 London Olympics.

Conde said
the lack of female high performance coaches was an issue across all high
performance sport.

“This is a
systemic issue the AIS is determined to lead on behalf of all Australian high
performance sport,” Conde said. “It’s true, there has been a progression in the
profile and recognition of female athletes and competitions in recent years,
but that hasn’t resulted in more high performance coaching opportunities for

encouraging to see female coaches from professional sporting codes embracing
the opportunity to be part of these programs because we need a collective sport
solution. Let’s challenge the status quo and address the very real issue about
why a greater percentage of women are not progressing in high performance
coaching roles.”

The programs
will begin with their first workshops at the end of March, covering areas such
as leadership presence, professional networking and understanding barriers to
organisational diversity.

Executive Program

Taya Conomos (Olympic and
Commonwealth Games Project and Communications Manager, Seven Network)

Emma Jayne Grigson (Health
Operations Executive, Australian Defence Force)

Carrie Graf (Director of
Sport, University of Canberra)

Rebecca Hamilton (Head of
Marketing and Experience, GWS Giants AFL)

Monique Hennessy (Legal
Counsel, National Rugby League)

Tal Karp (Director, Sixfold
Consulting Group, and former Matildas player)

Sam Lane (Journalist, Seven

Kim McConnie (Head of Big
Bash League, Cricket Australia)

Nat Momsen (General Manager
Marketing, Nissan Motor Corporation)

Catherine Ordway (Senior
Consultant, Snedden Hall & Gallop Lawyers)

Sally Phillips (Head of
Women’s National Basketball League)

Jo Richards (Performance Team
Director, Western Australian Institute of sport)

Katherine Savage (Chief Commercial Officer, Rowing Australia)

Tamara Sheppard (General
Manager Performance, Swimming Australia)

Vibeke Stisen (General
Manager Commercial and Communications, Hockey Australia)

Sarah Styles (Head of Female
Engagement, Cricket Australia)

High Performance Coaching Program

Vyninka Arlow (High
Performance Coach, two-time Olympian, Diving Australia)

Kristen Beams (High
Performance Scholarship Coach, Cricket Victoria, former Australian player)

Emma Carney (High Performance
Coach, Triathlon)

Michelle Cowan (High
Performance Coach, West Coast Eagles, Australian Rules)

Heather Garriock (Head Coach
of Canberra United, W-League, Football)

Rebecca Goddard (Australian
Rules Coach & Australian Federal Police,)

Amanda Isaac (Head Swim
Coach, Abbotsleigh School)

Shannon McFerran (Assistant Coach
Carlton in AFLW)

Regan Molyneaux (National
Talent Development Coach, Gymnastics Australia)

Tahnee Norris (Head Coach
Burleigh Bears Women, former Jillaroos representative, Rugby League)

Katrina Powell (Head Coach
Hockey, NSW Institute of Sport)

Ellen Randell (Senior Coach Women’s National Training Centre, Rowing Australia)

Sarah Scott (Coach, Nunawading
Swimming Club)

Leanne Speechley (High
Performance Swim Coach, Pymble Ladies College)

Stacia Strain (Head Coach
& Program Manager, Victorian Institute of Sport)

Alana Thomas (Melbourne
Rebels Super W Head Coach, Rugby Union)

Beth Whaanga (Coach,
Queensland Rugby Union and Brisbane State High School)

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