Date published: 
8 March 2017
Media type: 
Media release
General public

The Turnbull Government is backing the next generation of female leaders in sport with the launch of a new initiative aimed at encouraging more participation throughout Australia and a greater representation at the elite level.

Minister for Sport, Greg Hunt, and Minister for Women, Michaelia Cash, today marked International Women’s Day by naming 18 successful applicants to take part in the inaugural Stepping In program.

“These 18 women will undertake an intensive 12-month program to further develop their leadership skills, contributing to the success of their own sport but importantly helping to get more girls interested and taking part in sport and physical activity,” Minister Hunt said.

“The successful applicants come from 14 sports, including national and state sporting organisations, and from a variety of roles in high performance, participation to general management areas including current Board members.”

The successful applicants are:

Gemma Harrison (Australian Football)

Toni Lourens (Australian University Sport)

Keren Faulkner (Australian Paralympic Committee)

Mel Tantrum (Athletics)

Sonia Gouveia (Netball)

Hannah Every-Hall (Rowing)

Anna Caple (Tennis)

Sarah McGill (Netball)

Kristie-Lee Taylor (Cycling)

Jodie Fields (Cricket)

Danielle Formosa (Swimming)

Jane Gordon (Sailing)

Brooke Irvine (Gymnastics)

Tracey Scott (Football)

Kym McMahon (Swimming)

Belinda Kleverlaan (Tennis)

Caroline Rhodes (Cricket)

Joanne Banning (Rugby League)

“The success and growth of women’s sport in Australia has been immense and we are delighted former athletes are getting involved with the Stepping In program – including former Olympic rower Hannah Every-Hall, Olympic bronze medal water polo player Jane Moran and World Cup-winning cricket captain Jodie Fields.”

Stepping In is an extension of the Turnbull Government’s Women Leaders in Sport program, managed by the Australian Sports Commission in partnership with the Office for Women. The program will be delivered in partnership with the Melbourne Business School.

“Women Leaders in Sport has been a great success, benefitting more than 23,000 women since its inception in 2002,” Minister Cash said.

“We are committed to creating more opportunities for women right across Australia and as sport has demonstrated in recent years, new and exciting opportunities for women can be realised very quickly.”

“The Turnbull Government has boosted funding to assist the development of female leaders in sport and in 2017 will invest more than $500,000 via the Women Leaders in Sport and Stepping In programs.”

Stepping In builds on the highly successful and long-running Women Leaders in Sport program which, in 2017, will assist 92 projects, including 78 individuals and 14 organisations, reaching more than 350 females across 42 different sports.

“We are encouraged that more than 80 women from 37 sports applied for Stepping In, demonstrating there are many women with clear aspirations to be leaders in the sporting sector,” Minister Cash said.