Let’s cheer for the incredible Welsh women who are changing the game in the world of sports! From Olympic athletes to presenters, broadcasters and CEOs, these women redefine what it means to be a woman in sport. Their drive and passion inspire us all and prove that limits are made to be challenged. 

Hannah Mills OBE 

Credit: The Athlete Media Group

As Wales’ most successful Olympian and the most successful female sailor in Olympic history, Hannah Mills is truly an inspiration. She began sailing at age eight in Cardiff and the rest is history! Off of the water, Hannah is a sustainability champion and an International Olympic Committee Sustainability Ambassador. In 2019, she launched The Big Plastic Pledge, an athlete movement to eradicate single-use plastics and co-founded Athletes of the World, which campaigns for positive impact around climate change. In 2017, she was awarded an MBE and most recently in 2022 was given an OBE for her continued services to sailing and the environment.

Laura-Jane Jones 

Credit: Laura-Jane Jones on LinkedIn

Sports broadcaster and CEO of Blonde Ambition Media, Laura-Jane Jones has forged an incredible career in a traditionally male-dominated field. Laura-Jane has been working in professional rugby for over fifteen years as a reporter, producer and co-host of Try Hards, a “rugby podcast with a female twist”. She’s a strong advocate for women’s visibility in sports and calls for a united front in calling for better representation. Laura-Jane notes that “You’ll often feel in competition with other women around you. It’s taken shifts in all mindsets to recognise we’re better united than competing.”

Baroness Tanni Grey-Thompson

Credit: Phil Cole: Getty Images

Tanni Grey Thompson has the sporting legacy of being one of Britain’s greatest Paralympic athletes. Over five Paralympic Games competing in wheelchair racing, she was awarded eleven gold medals, four silvers and a bronze. If that wasn’t enough, Tanni has also won 13 World Championship medals, broken over 30 world records and is the six-time winner of the London Wheelchair Marathon. Most recently, Tanni became an independent cross-bench Peer in the House of Lords and plays an active role in promoting sports for disabled people.

Vicki Sutton 

Credit: Cardiff Met Sport

Vicki Sutton is the CEO of the formidable Cardiff Dragons Group and Wales Netball. Under her 

leadership, both organisations have flourished and continue to foster talent and promote Welsh netball at all levels. With her strategic vision and dedication, Sutton has propelled Cardiff Dragons and Wales Netball to new heights. Not one to back down from a challenge, Vicki firmly believes that change starts from the top. “Leaders have to model inclusivity,” she says, “No good climbing the ladder then shutting the trap door behind them at the top.”

Nia Jones 

Credit: @niajones6

Another standout figure in the world of netball, Nia Jones is an extraordinarily talented player and Captain for Cardiff Dragons. Nia defied limits by merging an incredibly successful international netball career with an equally successful professional football career. In a testament to her versatility, since 2018 Jones has been a regular pundit and co-commentator at Welsh International matches on behalf of BBC Sport Wales, having also attended the FIFA World Cup in Qatar. Though it can prove difficult to be one of only a few female commenters on BBC Wales’ Male fixtures, Jones uses that pressure as she would as an athlete – as an even bigger drive to succeed.

Abi Tierney 

Credit: Welsh Rugby Union

In 2023, Abi Tierney made history by becoming the first woman appointed as chief executive of the Welsh Rugby Union. With experience spanning the public and private sectors, Abi brings a wealth of operational and strategic expertise to her new role. Her appointment signifies a monumental shift in the landscape of Welsh rugby, placing women at the forefront of this prestigious organisation. Abi’s leadership not only breaks barriers but also reinforces the vital contribution of women in shaping the future of Welsh rugby, marking a significant milestone in the sport’s history.

Rebecca Edwards-Symmons

Credit: Commonwealth Games Wales

Recently appointed as Chief Executive Officer of Commonwealth Games Wales, Rebecca is making waves in Welsh sport as she leads Team Wales, spearheading strategic initiatives and ensuring that Wales is a force to be reckoned with on the world stage of sport. As a leading woman in Welsh sport, Rebecca is optimistic about the future and looks fondly on the last year, recognising that “there are more female leaders in sport than ever before, which is amazing to see. The last twelve months have been huge and it’s an exciting time for us women in sports leadership.”

Gabriella Jukes 

Credit: Regan Talent Group

Gabriella Jukes is a Welsh bilingual sports presenter and reporter whose versatility knows no bounds. Honoured as a Rising Host for Welsh Fire during The Hundred 2022 at Sophia Gardens, she also presents ‘Swans TV Live’ at Swansea City AFC and makes regular contributions to BBC Sport Wales, BBC Radio Cymru and ‘The Women’s Football Show’. Proudly Welsh-speaking, she reports for S4C’s Sgorio, Heno and Prynhawn Da. Additionally, she co-hosts the award-nominated podcast ‘She Has A Goal In Mind’, inspiring women in sports and contributed to the Euros 2022 ‘Womxn Who Play’ campaign.

Author WCS

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