Daniel Palmer




Wallaby and Diversity Ambassador

A Bold Leader in Times of Change


Dan had high ambitions in rugby from a young age. After representing the prestigious and highly competitive Australian Schools team and playing for Australia in Under 19 and 20’s World Cups, Dan secured a contract at the NSW Waratahs where he made his debut as a 19-year-old, making him the youngest tighthead prop to play Super Rugby. In his debut year, Dan was earmarked as a player of the future and received the Chris Whittaker Aspiring Waratah Award.


To support himself on a rookie contract, Dan moonlighted as a debt collector and private investigator, roles that added greatly to his worldly experience and understanding of the wide tapestry of Australian society.


A move to the ACT Brumbies in 2011 brought out the best in Dan. Within 12 months of being in Canberra, he became the first-choice tighthead prop, vice-captain and scrum coach for the Brumbies in the Super Rugby competition. Dan very quickly established a reputation as the strongest scrummager in Australian rugby and debuted for the Wallabies soon after.  He played three seasons for the Brumbies before securing a contract to play in the French Top 14 competition, something he had always aspired to do. But regrettably injuries took their toll.


Recurring foot injuries throughout 2014 gave cause for Dan to retire as a player to begin university studies and take up a coaching role with the ACT Brumbies. He has since completed a double degree in Psychology and Science, received first-class honours in neuroscience and is currently pursuing his PhD in cellular neuroscience at The John Curtin School of Medical Research.


Given the tough reputation Dan held in rugby circles, it was quite a juxtaposition for many in late 2020 when he came out as gay in a passionate and enlightening article he wrote for the Sydney Morning Herald. Dan wrote of his inner turmoil, struggle and distress at hiding his true self both within the rugby world and the world-at-large. His words and sentiments were met with praise from within rugby circles and the wider community alike. Dan is the first openly gay professional rugby union player and coach in Australia.


Dan has always been a wonderful communicator both in the written and spoken forms. He is highly articulate and conveys messages through a direct and effective leadership style. Dan is comfortable speaking both in the media and at public forums. He has a keen interest in philosophy and is passionate about science and scientific education. Dan is excited by opportunities to use his personal experiences in science and sport to help challenge stereotypes and offer unique perspectives. He is also a keen writer and would welcome opportunities to contribute written pieces.


Dan lives in Canberra where he continues his PhD studies and is the current Scrum Coach for the ACT Brumbies.


Robert Joske Management Pty Ltd

Tel: + 61 2 93281444

Mob: + 61 412 211 510

Email: robert@joskemanagement.com.au