Following the conclusion of the new Rugby Services Agreement with the WRU and the implementation of a new European tournament structure, Regional Rugby Wales has now moved to strengthen its corporate and governance structure in order to continue to work on behalf of the four Regions to deliver sustainable and competitive professional rugby in Wales.
Following an intense three-year term leading Welsh Regional Rugby as Chairman of Regional Rugby Wales, Nigel Short has stepped down from the role with immediate effect to concentrate on his original role of Chairman of Scarlets.
The position of RRW Chairman will now be taken up by Robin Cammish. Robin is currently a Director of Scarlets and will now step down as Vice Chair of the West Wales Region to concentrate on the new role with RRW. Robin's vast experience of start-up operations is ideally suited to taking on the RRW Chairman’s role through an initial six-month period while the organisation, its governance and operational disciplines are established.
Originating from Scarborough, Robin has been based in Kidwelly for over 10 years following a successful career operating at Board level in multinational businesses across five continents. Robin’s significant commercial experience and remarkable level of business experience and success will be key in contributing to the next stage of the growth of Regional Rugby.
After a twelve-month period as Interim Chief Executive of Regional Rugby in addition to his role as Chief Executive of Scarlets, Mark Davies is now confirmed in the position of Chief Executive of Regional Rugby and will step down from his position at Scarlets at the end of this month.
Prior to his four years at Scarlets, Mark spent 20 years at Honda Motor Company, running both UK and European businesses, so brings a wealth of commercial experience to his new role. In addition to his tenure in the sporting environment at Scarlets, Mark’s experience in Motorsport management at national and international level is considerable.
To further strengthen the commercial focus of the new organisation and underline the importance of strong governance of the body on behalf of all four Regions, Alan Whiteley is appointed as a senior Independent Director. Following a significant career in international Commercial law, Alan’s addition to the Board of Regional Rugby also provides substantial sports management experience, including a period as Chief Executive of Cardiff City FC.
Supporting the three key appointments is the full board of RRW; a group that brings a balance of lifelong passion and commitment to rugby in Wales and a wealth of commercial experience:
- Peter Thomas – Chairman, Cardiff Blues
- Roger Blyth – Chairman, Ospreys Rugby
- Martyn Hazell – Chairman, Newport Gwent Dragons
- Nigel Short – Chairman, Scarlets
- Richard Holland – Chief Executive Cardiff Blues
- Andrew Hore – Chief Executive Ospreys Rugby
- Gareth Davies – Chief Executive Newport Gwent Dragons
- Jon Daniels – General Manager Scarlets
Outgoing RRW Chairman Nigel Short said:“Regional Rugby and its future role within the Welsh game needs strong leadership as well as robust and clear structures so it can act with purpose to support the Regions and lead the regional game forward commercially.
“The Regions have been united in their vision and purpose throughout the detailed and lengthy discussions to reach an agreement with the WRU that creates a fair, progressive and credible foundation to protect and support the best interests of Welsh Rugby into the future.
“It has been both a challenge and a privilege to have played my part and I am encouraged that we now have an agreement in place that can create a stronger and more productive environment and encourage a thriving domestic game that feeds into the success of the national side.
“It now time for the next stage in Regional Rugby’s progression to be taken forward by a new executive with a strong commercial focus and for me to return to my real passion which is Scarlets Rugby. I look forward to continuing my work on the Board of RRW with a group of respected colleagues in the Regions.”
New RRW Chairman Robin Cammish said: “During his time as Chairman Nigel has shown outstanding leadership and delivered a real breakthrough for the Regions. We have all seen the benefits of working together as one team and we have committed to work together in the future to grow professional rugby in Wales.
“I will put all my energy and experience into the next phase of building Regional Rugby as we grow and become a very structured, professional and relevant organisation that is in touch with all levels of the game in Wales with the goal to promote and advance our regional game and ensure it reaches its full potential.”
Chairman of the Cardiff Blues, and first Chairman of Regional Rugby, Peter Thomas, said he believed a stronger and united regional rugby set-up had been the key to its success in recent months. He said: “Having been involved in the game for a considerable length of time, we now see the evolution of Regional Rugby into a strong, professional and united organisation with very capable, keen and dedicated businessmen and women who love rugby and will use their influence and experience to protect and celebrate our game.
“There is still plenty more hard work to be done – but also good reason for optimism as we bring greater structure and governance into Regional Rugby.
“On behalf of the Board of RRW, I would like to extend my sincere thanks to Nigel Short for his strong leadership, clear vision and strategic guidance over a long and challenging period; to former RRW Chairman Huw Evans for his dedication, leadership and commitment to regional rugby over many years and to previous RRW Chief Executive Stuart Gallacher who has been a rock in Welsh Rugby and was a driving force for our interests on the international stage.”
“They are all great rugby men that have genuine passion, vision, knowledge and loyalty to our game in Wales with qualities that I wholeheartedly admire.
“We can now look forward to the next phase of Regional Rugby, led by committed people who understand the value and potential of regional rugby, coupled with tremendous business experience and the confidence and leadership to make a real difference.” BIOGRAPHIES RRW EXECUTIVE ROBIN CAMMISH
Robin is CEO of QP Group, a global change and supply chain founded in 1995 and enjoying a successful growth working with blue chip clients. A 25-year practice leader in organisational development and process improvement, Robin successfully led the global business improvement programme at SmithKline Beecham. Robin has also held senior line management positions in numerous other sectors including automotive, electronics and consumer goods. QP Group has been consistently been recognised as leading its field through global industry leading awards including 2002 UK FastTrack 100 fastest growing businesses. Robin is a fellow of the Chartered Institute of Purchasing with a BSc in Geography and Zoology. He now lives and works from West Wales and is Chairman of Kidwelly Heritage Trust.
Aberdare-born, Mark was previously with Honda UK for 20 years before joining the Scarlets. He headed up both of its UK car and motorbike businesses with his most recent role as Head of Honda Motorcycles in Europe. He set the 2020 vision for the European market motorcycle business and was also previously General Manager of the Honda UK car business with a turnover of £1.5billion.
Alan graduated with a first from Cambridge University in Law and went on to take articles with Phillips and Buck which later became part of international law firm Eversheds. He became the youngest national partner of the corporate law group in 1989, heading up the corporate divisions for South Wales and the West. He left in 1998 to become a partner in a corporate finance boutique firm before also setting up a corporate law practice in 1999. Since then he has served as a non-executive director of a number of high profile businesses both in the UK and the US. He was Chief Executive of Cardiff City FC from 2011 to 2013. Currently, he provides corporate consultancy to a number of different organisations and is Managing Director of an Education and Sports Company.