Lawyer Rupinder Bains first Asian to join English football’s governing body

Premier League and EFL jointly appoints her as third non-executive FA director for the game

Rupinder Bains – Photo / The FA

Rupinder Bains, the founder and managing director of UK law firm Pinder Reaux & Associates, has been appointed to the FA Board which runs a hugely popular soccer tourney.

She becomes the first Asian, and the first non-white, to join the board. She was jointly appointed by the Premier League and EFL as the professional game’s third non-executive FA director following a change to eligibility criteria to allow them to select someone other than a club official or officer of the leagues.

“As part of The FA governance reforms, the eligibility criteria was changed for one of the PG’s Directors to allow the appointed individual to be someone other than a club official or an officer of the Leagues. Rupinder will also represent the PG on The FA Council,” the FA said in a statement.

The leagues were obliged to select a woman for the role in order to comply with the Government’s Code for Sports Governance, which mandates governing bodies in receipt of public money to ensure 30 per cent of their directors are female, according to one media report.

Rupinder, who specialises in media, defamation and reputation management and sports law, qualified in 1999 and set up her own firm in 2005. In 2012, she created a legal first when her firm won a landmark order against Facebook.

“I’m very proud and honoured to be offered this role within The Football Association,” she said in the same statement. “This is an organisation with fantastic history and traditions, governing a huge constituency of footballing personnel from grassroots up to international level.

“It is a significant moment in the governance of The FA and I am delighted to be embarking on a journey looking at the broader issues and I am hoping to be able to contribute to the evolving and developing nature of The Football Association and to the most widely supported sport in the world.”

FA Chairman Greg Clarke said: “I am delighted to formally welcome Rupinder on behalf of The Football Association Board. She brings to the Board a demonstrable track record of success in business and a good knowledge of football from her legal and commercial work. Rupinder will be an excellent addition to The FA Board and Council.”


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