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Saturday 30 August

Colin Smith resigns as Chairman of Rowing Australia

Rowing Australia today announced that Colin Smith has tendered his resignation as Chairman of Rowing Australia, a decision which took effect at yesterday's RA Board Meeting.

Mr Smith said of his decision: "I felt that is was time for a change to ensure that Rowing Australia had the opportunity to install fresh leadership in order to oversee our program leading into Rio and to ensure that our Gold medal objectives are met."

Mr Smith added: "I have thoroughly enjoyed my 14 years on the Rowing Australia Board, especially the last six as Chairman where I am very proud to have overseen RA's accomplishments, including the formation of the National Rowing Centre of Excellence, successfully hosting the Sydney International Rowing Regatta, including World Rowing Cups in both 2013 and 2014, and being the first Australian Sports Commission funded sport to deliver a governance review to achieve the ASC's mandatory governance principles.

"Moreover, the design and introduction of RA community rowing programs such as Adopt a School and talent development are two areas that I am proud to have been associated with and that will further cement RA's position as a leader within Australian sport."

"It has been a great pleasure to combine my professional experience with my passion for rowing and to give back to the sport that has given me so much joy."

Rowing Australia Chief Executive Andrew Dee commented: "While we are disappointed to see Colin depart his role as President of Rowing Australia we respect and understand his decision. We would like to take this opportunity to thank Colin on behalf of Rowing Australia for all his hard work and dedication to further the sport of rowing in Australia, and wish him the very best for his future endeavours".

Rowing Australia Director Flavia Gobbo has been appointed Chairman of the Board, which will undertake the appropriate process to consider a replacement member of the Board.

Mr Dee added: "We look forward to working with Flavia and the RA Board to build on the strength of Rowing Australia to meet our Gold medal objectives and to ensure the continued success of the sport into the future."

Ms Gobbo's appointment as Chairman of the Rowing Australia Board sees her become the first female in the role in the history of Rowing Australia. RA will release more information on Ms Gobbo's appointment in due course, however please see a brief biography below.

Melbourne-born Ms Gobbo is a company director and experienced corporate lawyer. She is currently on the board of WorkCover QLD, prior to that she was Chair of Q-COMP as well as a senior lawyer at Telstra Corporation. She has been a member of the Rowing Australia board since 19 December 2012. On the water, Flavia was also a successful rower at both State and National level and competes now at Masters level as a member of the University of Queensland Boat Club.

For more information, please contact:

Lucy Benjamin
Rowing Australia – Media and Communications Manager
Mob: +61 457 744 434


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