UQ Rugby Benefit Dinner

The University of Queensland in America, Inc., in partnership with the UQ Faculty of Business, Economics and Law (BEL), proudly presents the third annual UQ Rugby Benefit Dinner in support of the UQ rugby scholar athlete and the UQ Rugby Club.

Celebrate with your fellow UQ alumni and friends in central New York City, as UQ Rugby legend Dr Mark Loane presents one of the University's most prestigious sports medals to one of America's most outstanding high school rugby players.

The 2016 panel features Dr Steve Cutler, Con Foley, Dr Mark Loane AM, Michael Lynagh AM, Andy McIntyre and Nathan Sharpe as MC for the evening.

Tickets to this exclusive event are strictly limited. Secure your table of 10 or individual tickets by registering online or contacting the BEL Faculty Alumni Relations team at alumni@bel.uq.edu.au.

Event details

Thursday, 3 November 2016     

6.00pm - 10.00pm

The Manhattan Club
201 West 52nd Street, Cnr W. 52nd and 7th Ave
New York NY 10019

Business / Cocktail

More information    Register now

How your support helps

To date, over AU$110,000 has been raised by alumni and friends of the BEL Faculty and the UQ Rugby Club through the Rugby Benefit Dinner.

This fundraising has contributed to:

  • the establishment of the Mark Loane Medal
  • assisting the recipients of the UQ Sports Achievement Scholarship with tuition fees and college accommodation costs
  • covering the cost of implementing a concussion management program through HeadSmart, which will monitor the concussion history of all of our playing members and deal with immediate on-field incidents
  • supporting ongoing operations of the UQ Rugby Club
  • support for Play Rugby USA, a non-profit organization developing youth through rugby.

Make a donation

We invite you to consider making a donation to the UQ Rugby Scholar Athlete and the UQ Rugby Club program. A receipt will be issued for all ticket sales and gifts. All gifts to The University of Queensland in America are processed in US dollars and are tax-deductible in the United States to the extent allowed by law.

To make a donation, go to https://northamerica.uq.edu.au/donate-online/, choose “Other” and enter “BEL Rugby Student Athlete Fund” for giving destination.

Become a sponsor

We invite you to become a sponsor of the 2016 UQ Rugby Benefit Dinner.

Sponsorship benefits:

  • Promotion on the 2016 UQ Rugby Benefit Dinner website
  • Company logo on event emails and other promotional material
  • Company logo and description in the event program
  • Special mention during event proceedings
  • Alignment of your brand with The University of Queensland, the UQ Rugby Club and the prestigious Mark Loane Medal and scholarship

You can choose to bundle a US$1,000 sponsorship package with your Captain's or Corporate table when you register for the event.

For further information about sponsorship or donating, please contact us.

Contact us

2015 UQ Rugby Benefit Dinner

The second annual UQ Rugby Benefit Dinner in New York was held on Thursday 5 November at the Manhattan Club. 200 UQ alumni, rugby fans, friends and supporters joined the dinner, hosted by the BEL Faculty.

The stellar speaker line-up, moderated by Tim Usasz, included Mark Loane, Michael Lynagh, Mike Harris, Mike Tolkin and Mike Petri, with discussion dominated by an analysis of the recent Rugby World Cup. 

A highlight of the evening was the announcement of the inaugural Mark Loane Medal. The Medal recognises and rewards the outstanding potential of America's best high school rugby player, and is based on the player's skills, ability and aptitude, both on and off the rugby field.  

University of Arizona (Tucson) freshman physics student Steve Branham was awarded the medal in recognition of his exceptional high school rugby achievements, which include being a four-time All-American playing with the U17 All-Americans squad in 2013, and the USA Rugby Boys U19 High School All-American squad in 2014 for the Rugby Four Nations Cup. The award includes a rugby scholarship allowing Steven to travel to UQ during his summer vacation next year to play with UQ Rugby and attend the UQ Rugby Academy. 

A total of US$45,000 was raised through ticket sales, raffle tickets and a live auction on the night, conducted by TUQiA board member and Chair of the UQ Rugby Benefit Dinner Committee, Brian Macnish. Funds raised will go to the UQ Rugby Club and Play Rugby USA.

2015 Speakers

Mike Harris, Australian Wallabies and Melbourne Rebels
Dr Mark Loane AM, former Australian Wallabies Rugby Captain
Michael Lynagh AM, former Australian Wallabies Rugby Captain
Mike Petri, USA Eagles and NYAC RFC
Mike Tolkin, Head Coach, USA Eagles
Timothy Usasz, former USA Eagles Rugby Captain

Event photo gallery

Photo gallery

2014 UQ Rugby Benefit Dinner

2014 Speakers

Stephen Moore, Australian Wallabies Rugby Captain
John Eales, former Australian Wallabies Rugby Captain
Nathan Sharpe, former Australian Wallabies Rugby Captain

Event video & photo gallery

Photo gallery

Mark Loane AM, former Australian Wallabies rugby captain and University of Queensland alumnus, is regarded as one of the finest rugby players ever to emerge from Queensland.

To commemorate the achievements of one of our greatest sports legends, The University of Queensland has commissioned a medal to be awarded annually to America’s most outstanding high school rugby athlete.

The award of the Mark Loane Medal, which takes place at the annual BEL UQ Rugby Dinner in New York City, recognizes and rewards the outstanding potential of America's best high school rugby player. The award is based on the player's skills, ability and aptitude, both on and off the rugby field.  

The medal recipient will be given the opportunity to participate in the UQ Rugby Academy and play for the famous University of Queensland Rugby Club. His travel expenses and on campus accommodation are included as part of the award.


Steven BranhamSteven Branham
University of Arizona Rugby

Named as the 2014-2015 High School MVP in the Goff Rugby Report, Steven Branham enjoyed a successful high school rugby career at Fallbrook High School (CA) where he served as team captain.

Following the conclusion of the 2012 under-18 club season, Branham was invited to try out for the Griffins and was the only Fallbrook player selected to the under-18 Griffins squad.

In early 2013, Branham was invited to be part of the All-Americans squad and spent spring break of his sophomore year in England playing international matches with the U17 All-Americans.

Branham’s participation in various camps and all-star tournaments led to his berth on the USA Rugby Boys High School All-American squad for the Rugby 4 Nations Cup in 2014. He was also one of three Americans to be named to the all-tournament team.

Now a freshman studying a physics major, Branham plays for University of Arizona Rugby.


Anthea Barry 
Director of Advancement (Acting)
BEL Faculty, The University of Queensland

Claire Shuter
Alumni Relations Officer
BEL Faculty, The University of Queensland

United States

Gina Wheatcroft
Strategic Engagement Advisor (North America & Europe) 
UQ Advancement - The University of Queensland

Brian Macnish
Director, The University of Queensland in America Foundation
LLB Class of '77

Contact Alumni Relations

Reserve your tickets for the 2016 UQ Rugby Benefit Dinner, discuss sponsorship opportunities, and find out more about giving to UQ and the BEL Faculty.

Contact us