The NRL community will celebrate Harvey Norman Women In League Round this week (Round 19), with the game paying tribute to over half a million females involved across all aspects and levels of the game.
The NRL launched the round with their new TV commercial which features the Gold Coast Titans own Renee Cohen - GM Community and Game Development.
Titans Club Captain Ryan James labelled Cohen as a “critical part of the Gold Coast’s DNA” after her nomination in the 2020 Harvey Norman Gold Coast Women of the Year People’s Choice Award.
Ryan James has worked alongside Renee starting back in 2010.
“Renee is one of the most inspirational people I have ever worked with,” James said.
“She is extremely selfless, and always puts everyone else first. She is a critical part of the Gold Coast’s DNA”
“Without Ren working tirelessly in the background, a lot of what we do as a Club and as people in the community doesn’t get done.” James said.
This year also marks the 14th occasion of the round, with NRL Chief Executive Andrew Abdo acknowledging the leadership of women across the game and in particular, the founder of Women in League Round, Harvey Norman Chief Executive Katie Page.
“Katie has done and continues to do more for the game of rugby league than many will ever know,” Mr Abdo said.
“If we’re talking about the strength and stature of women involved in rugby league, Katie is the ultimate role model and trailblazer for thousands of girls and women that have gone on to live out their dreams as part of our game.
“Players will be paying tribute during this round to the special women in their lives that have supported them, inspired them and believed in them throughout their time in the game.
“This round is also an opportunity to acknowledge the growing strength and numbers of females in our game – whether that be in leadership positions at clubs, players, coaches and referees involved in matches, or volunteers keeping junior leagues going across the country.
“As a junior rugby league parent myself, I’m proud to look around the grounds on a weekend and see more and more roles and opportunities being led by females involved in rugby league. That’s a great thing for the future success of our game and it’s in large part thanks to women like Katie.
“I’m excited to see our inspiring NRLW players in competition next month. It will be one of the highlights of a challenging year.”
Harvey Norman Women In League founder, Katie Page said she was proud of how far the round had progressed.
“I spent the morning with Corban McGregor and two young players from the Kellyville Bushrangers at the end of last week. Those girls, Hayley and Charli-Rose, were two and three years old when we launched the Harvey Norman Women in League Round in 2007. Now, their playing and career aspirations are shaped by exceptional role models like Corban,” Ms Page said.
“Did I think Women in League and Women in Sport would be where it is today when we started 14 years ago? No, but I could see the potential. We have our female rugby league fans and volunteers to thank for getting us started. They were there supporting the game at every level from the beginning. Harvey Norman and the NRL invested the time and resources to build from there. Now it has its own sustainable momentum and we get to watch a new generation of girls and women rise up through the ranks in their preferred area of the game.”
This year’s Harvey Norman Women In League Round carries the theme – from strength to strength – paying tribute to the growing movement of females making an invaluable contribution to the betterment of the game overall.