Australian National Rugby League’s (NRL) the Gold Coast Titans have defended their decision to use a former porn star as a trainer for their under-20 players.
American Kortney Olson, the 31-year-old wife of Titans chief executive David May, joined the club two weeks ago in a strength-and-conditioning volunteer’s role.
Olson is a personal trainer and bodybuilding competitor.
May sent an e-mail late on Friday to all Titans staff explaining his wife’s past and why he believes she is fit to be at the club, the Gold Coast Bulletin reported, but since the news became public, several staff have reportedly voiced concern about whether she should be involved with the side’s youth, and there have been calls for her and May to be sacked.
May said he was standing by his wife and was prepared to answer accusations of nepotism.
“It would be nepotism if she was employed and getting paid, but she’s a volunteer. If anybody is unhappy with it, the NRL, our fans, players or sponsors, I will deal with it,” May told the newspaper.
“She has battled some of the most vicious and difficult personal demons — including rape, drug and alcohol abuse, and addiction — and during a period which was very difficult for a young woman, Kortney did some things which perhaps in hindsight she wouldn’t have done now,” he said. “Everyone does things they aren’t proud of, but she has put it behind her. I am proud of Kortney.”
The NRL said it was not a matter where it should intervene.
“Our understanding is that she is not an employee of the club and has no official capacity beyond volunteering in an area where she has some expertise,” a spokesman said.