University will celebrate International Women's Day with rugby legend and star of chaotic parish council meeting
She became a national hero overnight when she attempted to keep order while chaos descended on a Cheshire parish council meeting on Zoom, with members shouting at each other and being removed for misbehaviour.
Now, she has been given the authority to chair Edge Hill University’s exclusive online event with rugby legend and honorary doctor Gill Burns, which will be held from 4pm to 5pm on Monday, March 8 to celebrate International Women’s Day.
Having worked in local government for more than 25 years, Jackie was invited to host Edge Hill’s event in light of her career that reflects the university’s values and deep-rooted history in championing women and campaigning for justice, democracy and inclusion.
In this special Q&A event, Gill Burns, who is a Women’s Rugby World Cup winner and trailblazer for the sport, will deliver an empowering talk about her ethos on why you should never let gender stand in the way of your dreams.
Described as a pioneer and a sporting heroine in women’s rugby, Gill has been instrumental in breaking down stereotypes in the sport by being the first woman to referee at Twickenham and one of the first six women to be indicted into the World Rugby Hall of Fame in 2014.
Guests will hear about the highs and lows of her international career representing England between 1988 and 2002, which saw her win 73 caps for her country and a rugby competition to be renamed the Gill Burns County Championship Cup in 2017.
Edge Hill University also celebrated Gill’s sporting achievements and her work to champion women in rugby by awarding her an Honorary Doctor of Science in 2019.
At the time she received her award, Gill said: “Over the years it has been an honour to be described as a pioneer, a trailblazer and a sporting heroine with regards to women’s rugby but I was simply doing what I loved with commitment and passion. We were blissfully unaware of the fact that we were blazing a trail, we just wanted to play our chosen game as we knew no one else would sort it out for us. We had to do it ourselves.”