New Zealander Raelene Castle has been confirmed as Rugby Australia's new boss in another piece of sports administration history.
New Zealand Rugby chief executive Steve Tew hailed her appointment as heralding "a new era for global rugby".
"Rugby is a sport for everybody and there are numerous opportunities for both male and female athletes, whether you're at a social level, competitive level or an worldwide level", Castle told a news conference in Sydney.
"It was really the sporting administrative background (that won her the job over Kearns)", Clyne said.
Her opposite in New Zealand, Steve Tew, said Castle taking the top job across the Tasman heralded a new era for worldwide rugby. We went through many, many rounds of interviews including bringing in some of the state chairmen in and I think they were also impressed that she was bringing commercial ideas to the table.
"My experience in rugby league was very strong".
Bill Pulver had been contracted to run Rugby Australia until February.
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A relationship Castle is keen to foster once she begins her role is with Wallabies coach Michael Cheika.
Castle was born in Australia and moved to New Zealand as a child, returning to Sydney in 2013 to take the job at the Bulldogs.
Castle will take up her post on January 15, becoming the first female boss of any of the national governing bodies of the four major football codes in Australia.
"I am especially looking forward to getting out into the rugby communities across Australia and meeting the diverse range of people that make the game tick", Castle said.
"Having followed Rugby closely for over 30 years and having worked in the New Zealand and Australian sporting environments for the past 10 years, there is no doubt Australian rugby has a clear global and domestic offering for both male and female athletes that can be further developed and strengthened".
RA were engaged in legal battles with both the Western Force and Melbourne Rebels in a protracted decision making process over which team to cut from Super Rugby.
"We congratulate Raelene on her appointment, which is an acknowledgement of her strength as a leader, and her ability to drive success both on and off the field", Tew said in a statement.
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