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The Australian Rugby League Commission (ARLC) today announced that the Board and Mr David Gallop had come to a mutual agreement that will see Mr Gallop stepping down from his role as CEO of the Commission, effective immediately.

ARL Commission Chairman, Mr John Grant, indicated that the Commission was put in place to bring a fresh approach to the way the game can be envisioned, structured and governed.  It is the single controlling body and administrator of the game and the trustee for Rugby League in Australia. Its responsibility is equally to the future as the present. “David understands the need for a fresh approach. Taking this into account and with the interests of the game at heart, the Board and David have reached an agreement that the game needs a different style of leadership detached from the past for the next stage of its development,” Mr Grant said.

He paid tribute to Mr Gallop’s leading role in navigating Rugby League through a decade of growth and change that culminated in the establishment of the Independent Commission earlier this year.

“This agreement should in no way detract from the job David has done over the last decade. He has proven his skills as an effective administrator despite having one of the toughest jobs in sports management and he can be justifiably proud of his achievements and the legacy he leaves,” Mr Grant said.

“His leadership and dedication through often challenging times has been a contributor to the commercial success of the NRL competition and the popularity Rugby League enjoys today.

“On behalf of the ARL Commission and the Rugby League community I thank him for the countless hours he has devoted to promoting and improving Rugby League in Australia,” Mr Grant said.

Mr Gallop said: “It’s been a privilege for me to lead the game over the last 10 years and see the game's resurgence. I love the game and wish it well. Given there’s never a good time to give effect to a decision such as this, the Commission and I have both determined it’s best for me to depart immediately. I would like to thank the clubs, the players, my staff and the fans of the game. It has been an exhilarating and challenging period, but no one can do this job forever.”

Mr Grant said: “David leaves with the broadcast negotiations under control following the appointment of Greenhill Caliburn as lead negotiator and the new whole-of-game strategic plan well advanced.

"The search for a new CEO will commence immediately and, in the interim, NRL General Manager of Strategy, Mr Shane Mattiske, who is leading the Executive’s role in the broadcast negotiations and development of the whole-of-game strategic plan, has agreed to lead the business.

“We have a very capable Senior Leadership Team that, with the support of the Board, will ensure there is continuity until a new CEO is appointed,” he said.

The ARL Commission was established in February this year as the single controlling body and administrator of Rugby League.Comprising sporting and business leaders who act as trustees of the game, it is chaired by IT executive and former Kangaroo John Grant and comprises former advertising executive Ian Elliot, finance executive Peter Gregg, former Kangaroo and business coach Wayne Pearce OAM, former corporate executive Gary Pemberton AC, Indigenous educator Chris Sarra, and corporate executives Jeremy Sutcliffe and Catherine Harris AO PSM.Its formation represented an historic convergence of Rugby League’s governance structures with the backing of all clubs and all leagues.

Acknowledgement of Country

National Rugby League respects and honours the Traditional Custodians of the land and pay our respects to their Elders past, present and future. We acknowledge the stories, traditions and living cultures of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples on the lands we meet, gather and play on.

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