USA Rugby hires Rosie Spaulding as General Manager for Rugby World Cup Sevens 2018 in San Francisco

LAFAYETTE, Colo. - With less than 16 months to go before the Rugby World Cup Sevens 2018 in San Francisco, USA Rugby has hired experienced sports marketing executive Rosie Spaulding as RWC7s 2018 general manager to oversee all aspects of the planning and delivery of the international tournament.

Spaulding brings 14 years of experience in organizing high-profile global events to this position, which will prove invaluable to USA Rugby as Host Union. Based in the San Francisco Bay Area for the past seven years, Spaulding has held key leadership roles in producing two of the largest events to be hosted in Northern California in recent history: Super Bowl 50 and the 34th America's Cup.

Originally from the UK, Spaulding has previously led global teams in delivering major sporting events such as the Volvo Ocean Race and Modern Pentathlon World Cup. Spaulding also spent five years leading events and marketing for the Weymouth & Portland National Sailing Academy in England and helped develop that center into a world-class venue that would later host the London 2012 Olympic sailing events. 

"This is the first Rugby World Cup Sevens tournament to be held in the United States so I'm delighted to join USA Rugby and lead the team that will plan and execute this global event," said Spaulding. "With the recent inclusion of Rugby Sevens in the Olympics and the significant growth of the sport amongst men and women throughout the United States, it is an exciting time to be involved in rugby."

Spaulding's professional and location-specific experience will be crucial in supporting USA Rugby to deliver a one-of-a-kind event in accordance with World Rugby's requirements and all contractual obligations and agreed standards.

Spaulding added: "I'm looking forward to working with USA Rugby, World Rugby and other stakeholders to welcome visitors from around the world and deliver a successful tournament that showcases the very best of international play." 

"The Rugby World Cup Sevens 2018 will be the highest profile rugby event ever hosted in the United States," USA Rugby Chief Executive Officer Dan Payne said. "With yet another opportunity to grow the awareness of the game in our country, I'm excited to have someone that possesses Rosie's abilities joining the cause. Her résumé and experience speak for themselves."

Spaulding will bring with her Everett Jacobs and Sarah Hawkins to the Rugby World Cup Sevens team. Everett joins us as the VP, Regional Partnerships. With over a decade of experience in sports marketing and sponsorship in the San Francisco Bay Area, Everett brings a diverse background having worked with the America's Cup and Sacramento Kings, the agency side at LeadDog Marketing and SportsMark and, most recently, on the corporate marketing side at Salesforce.

Hawkins joins as Director of Marketing and Communications with a background in sports marketing, primarily based in San Francisco for the past eight years. Hawkins worked at the Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro, was the Director of Communications for Super Bowl 50 and was the Global Head of Digital for the America's Cup. 

World Rugby granted USA Rugby hosting rights for the seventh edition of the largest international sevens tournament - and third to feature women's teams - in May 2015, with the 42,000-seat AT&T Park chosen as the stadium. Since then, USA Rugby has worked with local partners in preparation for the tournament prior to the hiring of a general manager. Spaulding began her role in early 2017, and will continue to ready the San Francisco Bay Area for Rugby World Cup Sevens 2018, working in conjunction with USA Rugby as the Host Union.

For sponsorship inquiries and information related to the hosting of Rugby World Cup Sevens 2018, please contact Rosie Spaulding via email at rspaulding@usarugby.org. For partnerships, contact Everett Jacobs at ejacobs@usarugby.org or Communications Sarah Hawkins at shawkins@usarugby.org.

More information related to ticket sales and scheduling of this July 2018 event will be made public in due course.