Rowing Club Roles #1: The 5 most important roles, key to success
Running a rowing club is a huge challenge and requires plenty of teamwork. If your club lacks people from any of the following roles you might want to consider adding a new member to your committee:
Presidents are in charge of all policy matters. They chair all meetings, oversee general conduct of the club, and liaise with Boatman and Coaches as appropriate. For University based clubs they would also attend all Athletic Union meetings as well as organise/allocate Recruitment Fair. An important factor that is often overlooked for a president is the need to encourage and support all other committee members. The President should be a confident, out-going and organised person and not rowing if possible.
Director of Rowing
Coach recruitment, supervision and mentoring are the focuses for the Director of Rowing. They oversee the club training and racing programmes, the day to day practical coaching and liaising with other Officers. For University rowing clubs it is preferable that this role would be taken by a non-student where possible and someone who’s not rowing either!
A treasurer oversees all financial aspects. Raising cheques, monitoring all accounts, providing detailed reports to Club Officers and handling the end of year statement. They can go a step further and coordinate their own or club wide strict financial guidelines and procedures. The role requires attention to detail, some financial acumen and an ability to collect membership monies owed. A canny treasurer is worth their weight in gold (literally). One club I belonged to paid for all their trailer maintenance by charging a mileage fee to each person who raced at a regatta as part of towing charges.
Caring for all the tasks a President doesn’t have time to manage, a Secretary is definitely a must for clubs. They record minutes for all committee meetings, make race entries, deal with incoming mail/email, liaise with the Rowing Federation (annual registration / member count / insurances), and send emails to collect race fees for the Treasurer. In Universities they are also a key contact point for the sporting / student union and may organise the recruitment fair display. Other responsibilities they may be in charge of include collating the database of club members and running the Annual General Meeting. Required skills: organised, efficient and knowledgeable of all club activities and administration procedures.
Water Safety Adviser
Safety is critical for all clubs. Thus a Water Safety Adviser is key to a rowing club and responsible for implementing Water Safety Code as well as swimming tests for new members. A good Water Safety Adviser ensures all boats display correct boat IDs and are legal to race (heel restraints / bow balls). If Water Safety Audits are mandatory for your club they oversee this and ensure it is submitted to the Federation on time. This is a crucial role requiring attention to detail and responsibility. A good candidate for this role would also have completed basic water safety training (life-saver certificates or outboard launch driving).