Australian rugby has announced its first female director with Ann Sherry joining the ARU board.
The ARU's governance review is still months from completion but the historic step sees Sherry join ARU chairman Michael Hawker as the second independent director nominated by the board.
Sherry is currently the chief executive of cruise ship operator Carnival Australia and is a former CEO of Westpac New Zealand. She will vacate a board position on the Australian Sports Commission to take up her new role in rugby.
Sherry says she has experience in sport from a commercial perspective and believes she can bring a fresh set of skills to the ARU board, which has long been viewed as a boys' club.
Her main objective is to increase participation in the sport, particularly amongst women leading into the entry of sevens rugby, including women's sevens, to the next Olympics.