Rowing Tasmania – Media Release
John Driessen awarded Life Membership of Rowing Tasmania
One of Tasmania’s and Australia’s most successful rowing coaches has been awarded life membership of Rowing Tasmania. The Rowing Tasmania Board had no hesitation in unanimously supporting the nomination at its recent Board meeting and the announcement was made at the RT Annual General Meeting in Launceston to widespread acclaim.
John, who was with the Australian Rowing Team at Lake Aigubellette in France preparing for the World Championships, was pleasantly surprised by the news. His crew, the Men’s Quad rewarded him with a silver medal and qualified the boat for the 2016 Olympic Games. John coached the quad to a bronze medal at the 2012 London Olympic games.
John’s contribution to rowing has been enormous. He has been President of Huon Rowing Club for 25 years; a period in which the Club has produced international and Olympic medallists, including Simon Burgess, Tom Gibson, Dana Faletic and Kerry Hore. He is currently the longest serving Board member of Rowing Tasmania.
John began rowing with the Franklin Rowing Club in the 1970s. Having moderate success as a rower, he represented Tasmania in the Kings Cup. However it was coaching that John was to find success. He began coaching in 1985 and by 1990 he had been selected as a co-coach for the Australian Men’s Lightweight Quad.
In the 2000s John’s coaching had matured to the point that he is a regular on the Rowing Australia coaching panel. His crews have consistently won medals at World Cups and World Championships with 3 bronze, 3 silver and a gold medal at World Championships. At the London 2012 Olympic Games his men’s quad crew of Chris Morgan, Karsten Forsterling, James McRae and Dan Noonan won bronze.
John has served Rowing Tasmania as a long-term Director, selector and coach for Kings Cup crews.
Rowing Tasmania President, Jim Gibson said, “John is a shining light for our sport in Tasmania. He is one of the reasons that people sit up and take notice of Tasmanian rowing and our rowers on the national and international stage. It is a well-deserved accolade for a man who has given so much to the sport.”
John and his wife Anne, run their business Rowfit International in Huonville. They produce high quality rowing equipment that is exported around the world.
Peter Volker, Rowing Tasmania Honorary Media Officer 0418 125 319