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This is a historic day for World Rugby and a strong reflection of a sport that continues to reach out

LAFAYETTE, Colo. – It was announced today that the USA has been awarded a seat on an expanded World Rugby Council, along with Georgia and Romania.

Announced last November, World Rugby has altered their governance model to allow for wider representation on their Council. Unions interested in being selected were required to complete good governance criteria as noted in the new By Laws.

“It has long been a goal of USA Rugby to have our own seat on the World Rugby Council, so this is a significant day for us,” said USA Rugby Chairman of the Board Bob Latham. “We thank the Council for welcoming us to the table, where we intend to be a constructive voice in the growth of the game.”


With the new governance model in place, and clear criteria for representation laid out, the United States was quick to make their move.

“This is another step forward for USA Rugby and confirmation at the highest levels of World Rugby that we are making great progress as an organization,” said USA Rugby CEO Nigel Melville.

The new structure will debut at the interim meeting of Council in London this November. Following independent analysis, Georgia, Romania and the USA each were deemed to have met the governance criteria and will be entitled to one representative and two votes each.

“This is a historic day for World Rugby and a strong reflection of a sport that continues to reach out, grow and thrive within and beyond its traditional heartlands,” said World Rugby Chairman Bernard Lapasset in an official release. “We are delighted to be welcoming Georgia, Romania and the USA to Council, three unions who have contributed so much to the game and are making massive strides on and off the field. I know that they will make a strong contribution as we grow the sport together.

“This shows that the model is in place, the pathway is in place and the door is open to unions who aspire to have a seat on Council. We encourage all unions to take inspiration from Georgia, Romania and the USA, review their governance and strive to achieve the required criteria.”

Additionally, current Council members Argentina, Canada and Italy will each be entitled to a second representative and vote. The six regional associations represented on the Council will also receive an additional vote.

“World Rugby is committed to the sustainable growth of the sport set against a backdrop of transparency, integrity and strong governance and we will continue to work with our unions to ensure that they have all the necessary support to achieve and maintain the necessary criteria,” Lapasset said.