Liz Deegan’s NRL comms role made redundant in leadership restructure

Liz Deegan’s role as the NRL’s chief corporate affairs officer has been made redundant, less than a year after she ended her 31 year tenure at News Corp to accept the newly-created position.

The NRL said it had been forced to rationalise the leadership team and materially reduce costs “due to the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic and the significant loss of revenue in 2020”.

As part of the restructure, the chief operating officer role, held by Nick Weeks, has also been made redundant. Weeks joined the NRL in 2013, and will continue to work for the company through a transition period.

Deegan joined the NRL in November last year

Acting CEO Andrew Abdo said Deegan had made a big impact on the business in her short time as its comms lead.

“Liz brought a wealth of experience in strategic communications and we thank Liz for her valuable contribution and for the communications expertise she provided to the NRL,” he said.

Deegan – who had previously been with News Corp since 1988 as a journalist, editor, editorial business manager, editorial commercial director, and eventually as general manager of corporate affairs and relationships – said she is “grateful to the NRL for the opportunity and education” over 10 months in the role.

“What an extraordinary opportunity it was to experience the business of sport – from commercial relationships to media management; broadcast rights and partnerships; government relationships and policy issues; brand and reputation management; employee engagement; and community programs and social good initiatives – both before and during, the challenges of COVID,” she said.

When her appointment was announced last August, then-CEO Todd Greenberg – who consequently quit the top job in April – said Deegan was a “communications and media professional of the highest calibre with an exceptional reputation and work history”.

Deegan added at the time, pre-COVID, that she hoped the team would “grow and evolve the role of the NRL”.


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