Archive for year: 2018

Nominations are now open for the 2019 ACT State Team. 

Please see the High Performance > State Team page for more information

In Tokyo today Rowing ACT umpire Catherine Garrington qualified for her international rowing (FISA) umpires licence.


Catherine is one of Rowing ACT’s long-standing regatta officials. She is known to many local rowers as “the voice of the 1000m start”.


The rigorous exam was completed over two days, with a day of theory tests on the first followed by a series of practical scenarios on the second.


Catherine’s achievement is the culmination of almost two years of preparation. In late 2016 Rowing Australia nominated Catherine for the Australian Sports Commission’s National Officiating Scholarship program. This gave her access to international-level officiating education, mentoring and experience in working with regatta juries at major events. 


Catherine’s FISA licence qualifies her to officiate at international events, all the way up to the Olympic and Paralympic Games.

Are you interested in becoming one of our Boat Race Officials? 

Boat Race Officials (BROs) are a vital part of Rowing ACT who volunteer their time to ensure that every regatta is fun, safe and run to a high standard.

There are a variety of roles for BRO’s, some of which requiring a boat licence. 

The training session will be held 21 October, 1:30 – 3:30pm at the Elizabeth McKay Aquatic Centre, Yarralumla Bay (the old CGGS boat shed).

Please email for more details.

See an article about why become an umpire here:

Written by Geoff Northam, RACT Chief BRO

At a recent FISA regatta, I was asked by an
umpiring colleague why we volunteer to be umpires.  At the time we were standing on the large
concrete boat pontoon structure at the course, which we had come to call “the
human griller”, because it was oppressively hot, there was no escaping the heat
and at the end of the day you were cooked. 
In such circumstances it was a fair question – are umpires mad?

Our conversation turned to the health of
the sport of rowing, where we agreed but for volunteers, the sport of rowing
would not prosper, and the opportunity for athletes to compete and excel in
their chosen sport would be limited and less fulfilling than desired.  We climbed down from our FISA stratosphere
and were soon discussing local regattas in places like Argentina and Nicaragua.

So why do we volunteer to be umpires?  We found a common joy of being part of and
enabling young people to do their best, giving them the opportunity to
participate in a safe environment where enjoyment is the primary objective.  For my colleagues who rowed competitively,
there was a strong sense of giving back to the sport.  For my part, having no competitive rowing
background, it was about providing opportunity for all the young and emerging
competitors.  It was about being
supportive and sharing the joy of their ‘moments’, sometimes forgettable and
sometimes of great achievement.

I recalled that on an ordinary day, at an
ordinary regatta in Canberra, the rowing master from the school my children attended
said “those guys over there need some help” [motioning to the finish
line].  I went over and offered my time
with no expectation of personal benefit. 
They seized the opportunity and quickly put me to work!

I look back at that moment, and contrary to
my low expectation on personal benefits, I find myself continuously receiving
benefits from that moment.  I have shared
in the camaraderie of the greater body of fellow umpires.  I have witnessed and shared the heartbreak
and enjoyment of countless rowers achieving their goals, knowing that my role
was to keep them safe while they competed without being able to see what lay
ahead. I have witnessed the expected and unexpected moments and incidents that
will live in my memories forever.

From that one moment I have gained immeasurable
enrichment and opportunity.  Volunteering
as an umpire is an irresistible excuse to enjoy sports competition at every
level, and to get something in return from that experience.

RACT will be hosting BRO training October 14th. Please email for more details.

Know someone who should learn to row? Registrations are now open for Talent Identification Testing, as part of a National Rowing Talent ID Week. 
This is aimed at non-rowers, aged approximately 13-16 years who show an interest in learning to row and reaching a competitive level. Those selected for the TID program will be coached by Olympic and National Level coaches.  

Please register here:

If you have any questions, please contact Katrina at

Australia has defeated New Zealand to retain the title for the U21 Trans Tasman Regatta! Congratulations to all of the rowers involved, including ACT rowers Alex Grzeskowiak (CLRC) and Nathan Kennedy (ANUBC). In the second stage of the regatta Alex again won the Mens Single Scull, while both he and Nathan rowed in the Eight to win Gold.

Silver medals were won by Nathan in the Lightweight Double Scull, and by both Nathan and Alex in the Quad Scull.

Photo credit: Rowing Australia

Congratulations to Patrick Davoren – Rowing ACT’s newest Life Member!

The ACT Rowing community voted whole-heartedly and unanimously to accept the resolution to confer Life Membership on Pat at the Association’s AGM last night. Pat joins a very select group as the 8th Rowing ACT Life Member.

Pat started rowing in Canberra in 1964, the year the Lake filled and competition began.

Pat has a long history of service to rowing in Canberra and was a committee member of the then ACT Rowing Association as early as 1967. He has been Vice-president, Treasurer and Secretary in both Rowing ACT and the Canberra Rowing Club over the decades since, as well as being Captain and Vice-Captain in the Canberra Rowing Club. He was a Committee member/Director of Rowing ACT for 14 continuous years and only stepped aside in 2017 to make way for others. Pat remains RACT’s and CRC’s Public Officer.

Pat has always exercised a whole-of-rowing approach and has been a strong advocate for expanding participation in the sport. He has an encyclopaedic knowledge of rowing, particularly in the ACT. Rowing has greatly benefited from Pat’s contributions and the Board proposes his contribution be recognised by Member Clubs.

The Resolution was passed 22 August, 2018.
A fitting recognition of Pat for his many years of valuable service to the sport of Rowing in the ACT.

Applications are invited for the position of Executive Officer Rowing ACT.  Applications should be submitted by 31 August 2018.  Rowing ACT reserves the right to consider late applications.

Does this sound like you?

  • You have well-developed administrative skills and would like to work in a sports environment.
  • You have a knowledge of rowing or the ability to quickly acquire such knowledge.
  • You are a self-starter who has the drive and initiative to get things done.
  • You have well-developed communication and interpersonal skills with the proven ability to relate to a variety of people, including board directors and executives; club, state and national association representatives; government representatives; coaches; athletes; boat race officials, members of the public.
  • You have well-developed organisational skills including the ability to work in a dynamic environment, manage your own time, manage competing priorities and effectively meet deadlines.
  • You enjoy working both independently and as a member of a small team and are prepared to work flexible hours, including some evenings and weekends.
  • You like a combination of working in the office and being out and about doing physical tasks to set up for regatta.

Responsible to:

The Rowing ACT Board through the President and to the Director of Finance on accounting issues.

Primary Role:

This position involves both administration of the sport of Rowing in the ACT and facilitating its development and growth. It will involve management, communication and coordination of the sport’s volunteers, contractors and members along with event planning and management.


The Executive Officer will manage, coordinate and implement the policies of Rowing ACT, coordinate regattas and events, liaise with, coordinate and communicate with stakeholders, undertake accounting operations, manage records, undertake training, apply for grants and to explore other revenue opportunities.

The Executive Officer is expected to represent Rowing ACT at meetings and functions and liaise with other rowing bodies.

Accounting activities will be under the supervision and direction of the Director of Finance.  The Executive Officer is required to invoice within a fortnight of events, pay bills within normal business time-frames and maintain records to meet accounting and audit standards.  Financial reporting will be as required.

The successful applicant will also need to work cooperatively with the High Performance Program Coordinator.  There may be some overlap in duties and backup and support may be required, particularly during absences of the HPP Coordinator  Counterpart requirements exist for the HPP Coordinator.

Other duties will be as directed.

Terms of Employment

The successful applicant will be employed based on a 38-hour week.  Work may not only vary from day to day but varies significantly over the season so applicants need to be able to manage their own time and should expect to work variable hours in accordance with the requirements of the position.  There are work-from-home opportunities although some office attendance is required. The successful applicant will be required to attend regattas, which are run over the weekend, and provide their own transport to successfully meet the expectations of this role but will be provided with a fuel allowance.


$60,000-$70,000 (including superannuation) plus an annual fuel and car allowance of $1000 rolled into salary (allowing car tax deductions).  The actual salary will be negotiated taking into account the applicant’s existing/recent salary and work experience.

Contact Officer:  Vincent McMahon, Director of Finance, Rowing ACT

Email:  If you wish to discuss, send an email with your phone contact details.



Applicants are required to address the selection criteria below.


  • Knowledge of the sport of rowing or a proven ability to attain that knowledge quickly.
  • Lead, progress, monitor and report on the progress of initiatives included in the RACT Strategic Plan to ensure the Association continues to meet its Mission of “Foster, Promote and Grow the sport of Rowing in the ACT”.
  • Demonstrated experience managing, coordinating and working collaboratively with a wide range of stakeholders.
  • Leadership, communication, and interpersonal skills including the ability to work as a team.
  • High-level organisational skills including an ability to meet deadlines.
  • Proactivity and initiative.
  • Capability and proficiency in computer systems such as Microsoft Office, regatta systems and accounting software.


  • First Aid accreditation
  • A knowledge of Work Place Health and Safety Legislation.

The applicant will also need to meet the following requirements.

  • Possess a current driving licence and car to attend local events and meetings (the cost of interstate travel will be met by Rowing ACT).
  • An ACT Working with Vulnerable People registration at the time of application or soon after taking up the position. Any costs will be met by Rowing ACT.
  • Secure within 3 months a NSW General Boat Licence at the time of application or soon after taking up the position. Any costs will be met by Rowing ACT.
  • Achieve within 3 months Member Protection Information Officer certification.







Wednesday 22 August 2018 at 6.00pm



Could Member Clubs please advise if they are not to be represented.




Circulated to Member Clubs.  An abridged version is attached.


Audited financial accounts and the Director of Finance report have been circulated to Member Clubs




 Documentation comprises the draft resolution, the proposed revised Rules and a marked-up version of the proposed revised Rules.  These will be formally circulated shortly once all checking has been completed, given the complexity of cross referencing.

The driving change is to standarise the financial year to end in June, rather than April, to simplify rowing and accounting administration and for the convenience of members.    In doing so, it is proposed to take the opportunity to shorten our name from Rowing ACT Association Incorporated to Rowing ACT Incorporated, bearing in mind we are by definition an Association, and to simplify and make consistent some of the language of the Rules.


Circulated to Member Clubs.  If the draft resolution on change of Rules fails on the basis of the change of financial year,  no approval of these accounts will be sought.  If it fails for other reasons, approval will be sought and another resolution on the change of financial year will be brought forward at a further General Meeting.


There are a total of 9 directors including the President with each director having a term of two years.  6 are elected and three are appointed by the Board.  There are two expiring directors – Alison Chinn and Nick Hunter.  Nick has re-nominated.  Two others have also nominated – Peter Nixon and Caroline Pijpers.

The two expiring appointees, Peter Marshall and Jacqui Williams, have indicated that they will not be available for re-appointment.

Elections to the Board are governed by Rule 19.  The key nomination provisions are as follows.

Nominations of Individual Members for election as President and other elected Directors:

  • shall be made in writing, signed by two (2) Members of Rowing ACT and accompanied by the written consent of the candidate; and
  • shall be delivered to the Secretary not less than seven (7) days before the date fixed for the Annual General Meeting at which the election is to take place.

If you are making a nomination, please send a scanned copy to or send to The Secretary, Rowing ACT, PO Box 7074, Yarralumla ACT.  For convenience, you can use the following form.