Skip to content
Tom Ilube: Head of RFU ‘at ease’ as first black president of UK sport governing body |  Rugby Union News


Tom Ilube replaced Andy Cosslett at Twickenham and officially started work on August 1 with the immediate aim of overseeing the restoration of grassroots rugby to pre-Covid levels; the new RFU head aiming to revamp the system to ensure consistent success for English rugby

Last updated: 09/14/21 18:59

Tom Ilube replaced Andy Cosslett at RFU and officially started working on August 1

Tom Ilube is comfortable with his position as the first black president of a sports governing body in Britain after joining the Rugby Football Union with a full professional and personal CV.

Ilube replaced Andy Cosslett at Twickenham and officially began work on August 1 with the immediate aim of overseeing the restoration of grassroots rugby to pre-Covid levels.

In 2017, the 58-year-old was ranked first by Powerlist, which details the 100 most powerful people of African or Afro-Caribbean descent in Britain, based on his success as a tech entrepreneur and philanthropist.

Son of a Nigerian father and an English mother, Ilube spent time in Uganda and Nigeria in his youth and it was in the country ruled by Idi Amin that one of his most important experiences took place. heartbreaking.

“We spent a little time in East Africa, Uganda. My father came here as a soldier in 1956, then went into engineering and was posted there,” Ilube said.

“It was actually around the time Idi Amin took over, which was pretty lively. At one point I was tied up and almost shot by security guards for some reason. any.”

Building a winning system that delivers consistent success for England’s men’s and women’s teams, developing the sport and improving player well-being are among Ilube’s long-term goals, but he will also act as the champion of the game. diversity in all its forms.

He believes that the elitist image of rugby is undeserved and must be questioned, while accepting that it does not happen overnight.

Tom Ilube: Head of RFU ‘at ease’ as first black president of UK sport governing body |  Rugby Union News

Ilube aims to revamp the RFU system to ensure consistent success for England’s men’s and women’s teams

“I’m the first black president of a national sporting governing body, which is actually pretty interesting in itself,” said Ilube, whose tech and data-driven business career spells spells as a non-executive director. of the BBC and communications. WPP company.

“I’m really happy that rugby was the sport that made someone the first black chair, it’s great. And I’m pretty comfortable being that person, talking to people and communicating my thoughts.

“It has an impact over time. People say “who is involved in this?” And then they will start to get involved, I will talk about it a lot and I will help where I can.

“But I think you need diversity of all types to have real powerful teams. Socio-economic diversity is also very important. This is something that is really important to me in all its forms and I will do my utmost. possible to help.

“Rugby is a brilliant game and I encourage people from all walks of life to get involved.

“I’ve spoken to a lot of black players and coaches and former players to get their thoughts. They really like what the game has done for them, but they think the game could do more.

“Everyone says it’s a brilliant game and they all have suggestions on what could be done. Me and we are listening to those suggestions.

“Sometimes you have to look at the things that keep young people from getting involved and it can be as simple as transportation to and from clubs. We do a lot of work in that area.”

.



Source link