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Speaking Engagements

The Women in Sport Aotearoa Board and our CEO are regularly invited to speak about key topics related to leadership and involvement in sport by women and girls at a range of events, from global and local conferences; to workshops; meetings; corporate events, and more.

To request a speaker, please contact

Highlight Events


Event: NZOC Wāhine Toa Leadership Programme Special Projects Day

Date: 13 October 2023

Speaker: Nicky van den Bos, CEO

Nicky participated in a panel alongside women’s sports leaders Rebecca Rolls, Helene Wilson and Maddie McLean – discussing their thoughts, learnings and experiences for women’s sport.

Event: New Leaders Forum

Date/Time: Monday 18 – Wednesday 20 November 2019 

Venue: Town Hall, Helsinki, Finland

Speaker: Rachel Froggatt, CEO & Secretary General 

Rachel accepted an invitation to speak at the New Leaders Forum staged in partnership between the International Olympic Committee (IOC), the European Olympic Committees (EOC) and the Finnish Olympic Committee. The focus was on furthering gender equity across the Olympic Movement. The Forum was “invite-only” and 200+ sports leaders from Europe attended. It was the end of a year-long training programme for emerging leaders, called “Game-Changers.”

Rachel’s panel was: ‘Balanced Leadership, Better Leadership, Better Governance’ and fellow speakers included Katie Sadlier (World Rugby, General Manager of Women’s Rugby); Folker Hellmund (Director, European Olympic Committee EU Office); and Professor Gudrun Doll-Tepper (Vice-Chair, German Olympic Sports Confederation). The session was facilitated by Heidi Pekkola (Deputy Director, European Olympic Committee EU Office) and Game-Changer Iva Glibo.

Event: Workforce Diversity & Inclusion Conference

Date/Time: Wednesday 28 – Thursday 29 August 2019

Venue: Pullman Hotel, Auckland, New Zealand

Speaker: Rachel Froggatt, CEO & Secretary General 

Rachel joined a Cross-Sector Pane called “Inclusion, Diversity and Courage in Leadership. Key topics of discussion included:

  • Strategies to go further than fulfilling a quota and finding the best person for the job
  • Dealing with backlash and perceived reverse discrimination
  • Being courageous and strategic to avoid a tick box approach to inclusion and diversity

Moderator: Sara-Jane Elika, Interim CEO, Pacific Media Network

Fellow speakers: Greer Williams, Group Manager – Talent, Learning & Development, KiwiRail; Jan O’Neill, Executive General Manager People & Culture New Zealand, Downer; Jude Urlich General Manager Strategy and Performance, WorkSafe New Zealand.

Event: International Sociology of Sport Association (ISSA) World Congress 

Date/Time: Wednesday 24 April 2019, 4:30pm ~ 5:30pm (duration: 24 ~ 26 April 2019, opening reception: 6pm) 

Venue: University of Otago, Dunedin, New Zealand

Speaker: Rachel Froggatt, CEO & Secretary General 

Rachel moderated a “Women in Sport” Panel with the topic: “the power of sport as a tool to create positive social change for women and girls in society”. The overall theme of the conference was ‘Sociology of Sport and Alternative Futures’.

Panel participants alongside Rachel included Hon Grant Robertson (Minister for Sport & Recreation), Raewyn Lovett (IWG Co-Chair), Kereyn Smith (NZOC CEO) and Professor Elizabeth Pike (Head of Sport, Health and Exercise, University of Hertfordshire).  

For more information, please visit the official website:  

Event: UN Commission on the Status of Women 2019 

Date/Time: Wednesday 13 March 2019, 8:30am (duration: 11 – 22 March 2019) 

Venue: United Nations Headquarters, New York, USA

Speaker: Sarah Leberman, Co-Chair & Co-Founder

Professor Sarah Leberman, along with world leaders for gender equality in sport: Nancy Lee (IOC Gender Equality consultant), Diane Huffman (Chair of International Committee & WomenSport International), Suad Galow (Founder and President of Somali Women Foundation), Professor Carol Garber (Chair of Biobehavioral Sciences, Teacher’s College) and Sarah Axelson (Senior Director of Advocacy, Women’s Sports Foundation) joined to discuss building a sustainable environment for gender equality in sport and physical activity for girls and women.  

Rachel Froggatt, CEO & Secretary General, was also a delegate.

Event: UN Women Aotearoa, International Women’s Day Breakfast 2019

Date/Time: Friday 8 March 2019, 7am – 8.30am (doors open 6.45am)

Venue: The Elms Hotel, Christchurch, New Zealand

Speaker: Rachel Froggatt, CEO & Secretary General

Rachel gave the keynote address at this special fundraising breakfast, with proceeds going to support ‘Markets for Change’ in Fiji, a special United Nations project to ensure marketplaces in Fiji, Solomon Islands and Vanuatu are safe, inclusive and non-discriminatory. Between 75% – 90% of all market workers are women – hours are long, income is low and working conditions are difficult. ‘Markets for Change’ promotes gender equality and women’s empowerment.

Rachel discussed the growth of women’s sport in New Zealand and globally and the power of sport as tool to support gender equity in society.

Download the invitation here: CHCH-IWD2019-Invitation

Event: Forsyth Barr, “From Participation to Performance” Event, staged as part of the Ride New Zealand Cycling Festival

Date/Time: Wednesday 30 January 2019, from 5pm

Venue: Avantidrome, Cambridge

Speaker: Rachel Froggatt, CEO & Secretary General

Rachel joined cycling role models Ali Shanks, Rushlee Buchanan and Hamish Bond as they shared their personal pathways from participation to performance. She discussed the growth of women’s sport in New Zealand and what’s ahead, plus the International Working Group (IWG) on Women and Sport.

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