Former Virgin airline boss to fill Rugby Australia board seat

Virgin Blue co-founder and Tasmanian AFL Taskforce boss Brett Godfrey is set to take a seat at the Rugby Australia board table after winning over the nominations committee and Super Rugby boards.

As the jostling continues ahead of RA's annual general meeting on March 30, Super Rugby sources told The Sydney Morning Herald Godfrey would be nominated ahead of former Ten boss and Magellan deputy chair Hamish McLennan in a member-wide notice to be issued late on Monday.

Brett Godfrey is the chief of Tasmania’s AFL Taskforce. Credit:AAP

He is expected to be listed alongside V8 Supercars chairman Peter Wiggs and World Cup-winning former Wallaby Daniel Herbert.

Godfrey emerged as a strong candidate with significant corporate and entrepreneurial experience after founding and running Virgin Blue airlines in Australia until 2010 and serving as deputy chair of Tourism Australia.

He is currently the chair of Tasmania's AFL Taskforce bid to convince the governing body to give Tasmania a professional team and is a director of a number of tourism ventures around Australia and served on the board of the Australian Rugby Foundation.

McLennan is still in the mix to go on to the board in the next three to six months, potentially replacing interim chairman Paul McLean, while a campaign for Sydney University rugby figure David Mortimer to lead the board as chairman appears to have run aground.

McLennan, who was Rupert Murdoch's right-hand man at News Corp in New York before he ran free-to-air broadcaster Ten for three years, will now have to rely on promises from the board and nominations committee over any future role, with any new appointments likely to be held off for at least three months.

Joe Roff is still understood to be in the mix for a role at a later date while the pressure will also be on the nominations committee to appoint a credentialed female candidate.

Nominations were expected to be distributed to members on Monday afternoon.

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