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Announcing our Women in League round panel

We are thrilled to introduce an incredible line-up for our special guest panel at the upcoming Women of Storm Cocktail Event, celebrating Women in League Round. 

Ahead of our Round 22 clash with the Eels at Marvel Stadium, join us for a premium pre-game function just a short pass away at All Smiles in Docklands. 

Enjoy an evening of networking and hear from an inspiring group of guest speakers including NRL Executive General Manager of Performance & Pathways Tain Drinkwater, Former Telstra Group Executive - Transformation, Communication & People Alex Badenoch and NRL Victoria Community Engagement Officer Pauline Poloai. 

Those in attendance will also be treated to a Q&A discussion with Supporting Partner Banks Botanical Chief Marketing Officer Yolanda Uys, before the game day excitement continues over at Marvel Stadium. 

All tickets include entry to the event, canapes, beverages and a diamond ticket to the Quill Room for the ensuing match. Secure your spot here!

Tain Drinkwater

A highly experienced and respected sports administrator, Tain Drinkwater was the CEO of Netball NSW until March 2022, before joining the National Rugby League as the Head of Performance and Pathways. 

In her role as Chief Executive at NNSW, Tain oversaw the implementation of groundbreaking reform to drive greater inclusivity and participation in Netball, including, for the first time in SSN history, Netball NSW’s two professional franchises contesting the 2021 Grand Final with the Swifts claiming a record seventh Premiership.   

Tain joined Netball NSW from the Brisbane Broncos where she was a senior member of the club’s Executive Team as the Chief Executive of the club’s National Rugby League Women’s Program, which delivered three back-to-back NRLW Premierships, as well as leading the HR, Risk & Compliance portfolio of the only publicly listed sporting franchise on the Australian Securities Exchange. 

With a vision to continue to build female participation across all levels of business, particularly in non-traditional roles, Tain’s work across industries has ignited a passion to become involved in and support programs focused on health, leadership and women’s protection, with a focus on providing pathways for female empowerment to deliver social change.

Alex Badenoch 

A destined leader, Alex Badenoch most recently held the role of Group Executive - Transformation, Communication & People for Telstra, leading the companies transformation strategy on behalf of the CEO and Board. 

Prior to her guiding role at Telstra, Alex was the Director Human Resources, Corporate Affairs and Customer for Asciano Limited with accountabilty for the Human Resources of approximately 9,000 employees and Corporate Affairs including media, government relations and internal communications. She also led a group focussing on on enterprise-wide customer initiatives including the development of a customer-centric culture. Before joining Asciano, Alex also held a number of executive positions with Telstra.  

Her most recent endeavours have particularly focussed on leadership during periods of change and ensuring the implementation of robust HR processes to create for healthy workplaces during agile change – skills she is passionate to implement and pass on.

Pauline Poloai 

Among those who are contributing to female participation in rugby league is our very own Pauline Poloai, who has worked in development and community roles in Victorian rugby league for over 10 years. 

Her achievements include the foundation of community female competitions, delivering female specific education activities for coaches, coordinators and volunteers, establishing junior girl-specific gala days and establishing female junior leadership camps. 

Pauline is also a major contributor to female pathway and elite programs, coordinating state programs and as trainer for the Samoan international women’s team and Victorian state men’s and women’s teams. 

She was awarded a Scholarship under the Victorian Government’s Change Our Game program in 2021 to advance women in sports industry.  

Thank you to our Supporting Partners Suzuki, Banks Botanical, Cointree, Gallaghers and The Amazing Baby Company.  

Continuing our acknowledgment of Women in League round, Melbourne Storm are excited to share the NRL squad will don a specially designed Women in League tee during warm up of the Saturday evening clash. The tee is available from the Storm store now!

For more exclusive events and news become a part of the Women of Storm network today!

Acknowledgement of Country

Melbourne Storm respect and honour the Traditional Custodians of the land and pay our respects to their Elders past, present and future. We acknowledge the stories, traditions and living cultures of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples on the lands we meet, gather and play on.