OUR CLUB STEWARDS
As characteristic of any university club, a major challenge for UStABC is loss of continuity between Committees. Each four year complete membership turnover brings a loss of knowledge and experience of those who have driven the Club in the past.
Our network of Club Stewards, made up of Boat Club alumni, are tasked with advising and assisting, where necessary, the student Committee of UStABC and the Director of Rowing, in order to continue to develop the Club on and off the water and to drive towards our shared strategic vision and our central aim; to win more. Differing from our all-encompassing Alumni & Supporters Club, Eden BC, our Club Stewards are selected to assist in the governing of UStABC in a practical and strategic sense.
Led by our Honorary Club Captain, appointment as a Club Steward recognises outstanding and exceptional service, over and above the expected level, in order to improve the St Andrews rowing environment and experience for future generations. This exceptional service may be in a variety of different fields, such as performance, strategy, operations, governance or any other contribution deemed appropriate by the incumbent Stewards. As stipulated by our Club Constitution, a maximum of one Steward may be appointed each year, selected by the incumbent Stewards with the Honorary Captains elected every four years by the UStABC Committee.
Honorary Club Captain
As the founder of the University of St Andrews Boat Club in 1962 (see ‘Club Foundation’ under our ‘History & Alumni’ page for further information), John played the first vital role in providing the sport of rowing to the student population of St Andrews. In organising the provision and delivery of a rowing boat to the Eden estuary as well as advertising to potential members of his new Club, John’s drive and commitment to make those difficult first moves is irrefutable.
Right from those first days in 1962, John helped to instal a culture of commitment, determination against adversity and duty that remain central pillars of the Club today. His continued high level of involvement with the Club, including regular visits and invitations to Henley Royal Regatta, have been so cherished, and therefore the Club Steward network was created to ensure that the contributions and experience of other alumni is recognised and utilised by the current Club. John’s dedication to UStABC is unparalleled, being the father-figure of the UStABC family.
Thomas 'TT' Thomson
Honorary Club Vice Captain
A graduate of 2016, TT was, and continues to be, something of a legend amongst the Club membership. As a home-grown (former Novice) talent, TT’s loyalty and sense of duty to the Club have made him a central figure in the Club’s recent history. TT is, particularly, a keen supporter of the Senior Women’s rowing squad at St Andrews, recognising the potential within the squad, years before our women became a force within British University rowing.
TT, and his family, also assisted in fleet expansion, providing our athletes with the boats to secure their potential, breaking Club records on the Tideway (London), sending crews to Henley and providing crucial seats for the next generation of novice rowers to start their journey at St Andrews.
[Class of 2016]
A former President, Women’s Captain and Novice Coach, Emmeline is one of our most respected and experienced alumni. During her Presidency, Emmeline oversaw the Club's first year as a Performance Sport at St Andrews, such as the installation of our first Director of Rowing. Emmeline, also, successfully managed a key cultural shift towards a performance-centric mindset for the entire Club and not just selected athletes as previously. Her vision and professional approach still remains as relevant as ever to the Club today.
Emmeline remains as one of the most respected Sports Club Presidents in recent history at St Andrews, and serves as the current Vice President of Eden Boat Club. Her stewardship shall focus on the culture of St Andrews, ensuring that the central pillars of UStABC remain ever present.
[Class of 2015]
Dr. Ollie Negus
Ollie’s appointment as a Club Steward recognises his exceptional and dutiful service as Eden Boat Club President (2015 - Present). Whilst Ollie’s time at UStABC was successful in its own right, with a Scottish Championship to his name in the University 4+, it is Ollie’s contribution post-graduation that especially deserve recognition. Ollie, alongside fellow Saints rowers, oversaw the foundation and development of Eden BC, not only as an active alumni rowing Club, competing at HRR qualifiers, but also as a wide-ranging and close knit alumni and supporters Club.
For years, Ollie has ran the central platform for alumni to not only stay in touch with each other but also with the current Club membership. Ollie’s drive to ensure that the culture and history of UStABC is preserved is outstanding and whilst many alumni may feel that their main contribution to UStABC ends upon graduation, Ollie leads by example, in dedicating time, effort and money to allow future generations to enjoy rowing even more at St Andrews. Ollie’s Stewardship will be involved mostly with alumni engagement advice in order to strengthen the support network for the University of St Andrews Boat Club.
[Class of 2012]
Dr. Ben Reilly O'Donnell
Performance and Athlete Development
As an alumnus of UL and a highly successful rower in his own right, Ben joined the coaching team at UStABC during his postgraduate studies at St Andrews. In assisting the then Director of Rowing (Iain Rice), Ben drove the Senior teams to unprecedented levels of success, including BUCS medals and Henley qualifications. Ben’s humble yet highly respected approach to athlete management and development, allowed the potential of many of our current and former athletes to be realised at a far quicker rate than normal.
Ben was also a pivotal figure in terms of the strategic future of the University of St Andrews Boat Club, Ben was a key contributor to the Growth & Development Strategy, including objective setting and the Eden Fund. Ben’s knowledge and experience are invaluable as the Club looks to advance to the next stage of competitive performance, such as sending athletes to GB Trials.
[Class of 2018]