The NRL is set to appoint a National Manager of Refereeing to provide a co-ordinated approach to officiating across all levels of the game and develop clear career pathways for aspiring match officials, from the junior ranks through to the NRL.
NRL Head of Football, Mr Todd Greenberg, said the new position follows a game-wide review of refereeing structures and highlights the important role match officials play at all levels of Rugby League.
As part of the review's findings, Tony Archer has today been appointed NRL Referees Elite Performance Manager while former Canberra Raiders coach Andrew Dunemann will also join the high performance team as a consultant to provide match officials with technical expertise from a NRL coaching perspective.
"We should always respect the significant role match officials play in our game and it is important we have the best possible framework in place to encourage more people to become involved as referees," Mr Greenberg said.
"Through the National Manager of Refereeing the NRL will be able to work closely with the state leagues to ensure that officials at all levels have a co-ordinated approach to the game and clearly identified career pathways to follow."
Archer has been appointed as NRL Referees Elite Performance Manager after holding the position in an interim role since mid-October.
He retired from refereeing after the 2012 season following a decorated career that saw him officiate six Telstra Premiership Grand Finals, 13 State of Origins and nine Tests. Archer is a three-time winner of the Col Pearce Medal as referee of the year and a three-time winner of the International Referee of the Year award.
For the past 12 months he has worked as a technical coach in the NRL squad.
"Tony has shown over the past few months just how important his leadership and experience is to the elite match officials program," Mr Greenberg said.
"Congratulations to both Tony and Andrew on their appointments."
The National Manager of Refereeing position will be advertised later this month.