Counties Manukau Rugby has appointed a familiar face as the Union’s new chief executive with former player and administrator Chad Shepherd accepting the role.
Shepherd is a Pukekohe local having attended Pukekohe High School before going on to play first class rugby while at university in Otago.
He worked at Counties Manukau Rugby for a number of years, heading up the High Performance team until accepting a job leading player development at the Blues last year.
Shepherd will begin with Counties Manukau Rugby in March, taking over from Aaron Lawton, who has accepted a role outside of rugby.
“It is such an honour and privilege to continue on that hard work that has gone before, getting the Union into the space that it is,” Shepherd said.
“I have big shoes to fill – Aaron has done an incredible job.
“Counties is home for me – it is in my DNA – and I honestly can’t wait to get stuck in.”
Counties Manukau Rugby chairman Gary Millington was thrilled to secure Shepherd’s services.
“Chad has always been very highly thought of at Counties Manukau Rugby and we are delighted he has agreed to come home,” Millington said.
“He played a key role in forming the concept of Pride in the Hoops and the culture at the Union, that we treasure so much, and we know he brings a wealth of rugby and local knowledge to the role – key areas we wanted to focus on.
“The Union is in great shape – something Aaron and his team have worked hard to achieve over the past few years. Now we are in a position to really focus on high performance growth while continuing to strengthen ties to our clubs and stakeholders and those are areas Chad will be strong in.”
Shepherd will begin in early March and will spend a month alongside Lawton before taking over officially at the beginning of April.
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