The Board of Rowing Australia is responsible for setting the strategic direction for the organisation and overseeing its activities.
The current Company Directors are:
President and Chairman
Rob Scott was appointed Managing Director of Wesfarmers in November 2017 following his appointment as Deputy Chief Executive Officer in February 2017. Prior to this, he was Managing Director of the Wesfarmers Industrials division from August 2015 until August 2017. He has held a number of leadership roles with Wesfarmers including Finance Director of the Coles Group and Managing Director of Wesfarmers Insurance. He previously worked with Deutsche Bank in Asia and Australia in various investment banking roles and is a past President of the Insurance Council of Australia.
Mr Scott is a dual Olympian in rowing, having stroked the Eight at the Barcelona Olympics in 1992 and a silver medallist from the 1996 Atlanta Olympics in the Pair. He started his rowing career in Perth Western Australia and was a scholarship holder at the AIS for a number of years. He was the WA Sports Star of the Year in 1997. He is McVilly-Pearce pin number 447.
Mr Scott holds a Master of Applied Finance degree from Macquarie University and a Bachelor of Commerce degree from the Australian National University. He is a qualified Chartered Accountant and has completed the Advanced Management Program at Harvard Business School.
Mr Scott currently lives in Perth with his wife Liz (an Olympic gold medallist in water polo) and two children.
Director, Deputy Chair
Flavia Gobbo is a Director of WorkSafe Victoria.
Until recently Ms Gobbo was the Chairman of Q-COMP as well as part of the Senior Leadership team at Telstra Legal Services and held a number of senior roles during her thirteen plus years at Telstra. During her time at Telstra, Ms Gobbo’s role included her lending her expertise in competition law and stakeholder management and in this role, Ms Gobbo managed a large team of over 30 lawyers as well as a significant external budget. Ms Gobbo also acted in the role of Assistant Company Secretary of Telstra with a focus on the Audit committee, management of the Shareholder Registry and Subsidiary requirements as well as being the Company Secretary of the Telstra Foundation.
Ms Gobbo has also worked in Finance & Strategy, Legal Services at Telstra where she was involved in the areas of Corporate Governance and Policy, Compliance and the Company Secretary. She also worked in Treasury, advising on Telstra’s Debt Issue Program and other capital management issues. These positions have given Ms Gobbo a valuable practical insight into a Director’s regulatory and commercial responsibilities.
Previously Ms Gobbo was with Telstra Product Management and was responsible for providing commercially focused legal advice covering the product lifecycle from sourcing and vendor negotiations to product design, constructing customers terms and conditions, ongoing product legal compliance issues and product divestments and exits. In this role she was responsible for: providing commercially-focused constructive legal advice with extensive involvement in strategic and operational planning.
She is a Member of the Queensland Law Society and a Member and Mentor of the Australian Corporate Lawyers Association. Ms Gobbo has been admitted as a legal practitioner of the Supreme Court of Victoria, Supreme Court of Queensland and the High Court of Australia.
On the water, Ms Gobbo was a successful rower at both State and National level and now competes at Masters level as a member of Melbourne University Boat Club. She joined the Board of Rowing Australia in December 2012 and was appointed the Vice-Chairman of the Board in October 2014. Ms Gobbo is also the Chair of the High Performance Commission.
Merrick Howes is the Chairman of RA’s Audit and Risk Committee and has previously served on RA’s High Performance Oversight Committee.
Mr Howes is a highly experienced senior executive with significant financial experience who is currently Managing Director of ACPA Pty Ltd, a part of the global debt financing firm Anchorage Capital, and has previously founded and run Shearwater Capital, and held senior financial executive positions at Goldman Sachs JB Were, Merrill Lynch and Macquarie Bank.
In addition to his significant business expertise Mr Howes also enjoyed a successful rowing career including winning a Commonwealth Games silver medal, representing Australia at four World Championships and winning numerous Australian championship titles. Mr Howes is McVilly-Pearce pin number 354.
An accomplished rower, Bryan Weir represented Australia in the Men’s Coxless Pair in the World Rowing Championships in Lucerne in 1974 and was part of the New South Wales King’s Cup Eight in 1976. He is McVilly-Pearce pin number 214. At an rowing administration level, prior to his role with Rowing Australia, he has held the positions of Deputy President of Rowing New South Wales, Board Member of the Syndey International Rowing Regatta and President of Mosman Rowing Club.
Mr Weir graduated from the University of New South Wales with degrees in Law and Commerce in 1976. He joined the law firm Freehill Hollingdale & Page (now Freehills), becoming a partner in 1980. In 1993, he left Freehills to become a divisional director of Macquarie Bank, where he remained until 1998. Since then he has (with a business partner) established and operated a private investment and advisory group, while he is also a Director of L.J. Hooker Ltd, a position he has held since 2014.
Sarah Cook started rowing in 2000 through the Talent Identification Program with the ACT Academy of Sport and Canberra Rowing Club, and represented Australia in the Coxless Four at the Under-23 World Championships in 2004 and 2005, winning Silver in 2004. She competed at the World Rowing Championships between 2006 to 2012, winning Bronze in 2006 and Silver in 2010. Ms Cook competed for Australia at the 2008 Olympic Games in the Women’s Pair and the 2012 Olympic Games in the Women’s Eight. In 2009, Ms Cook joined Sydney University Boat Club and represented the club between 2009-2017, while she competed at Henley Royal Regatta in 2011 in the Princess Grace Challenge Cup. She is McVilly-Pearce pin number 689. Following the 2012 Olympics, Ms Cook changed sports to Sailing and competed for Australia between 2013-2015 in the 470 Dinghy and 49erFX Skiff classes with the Australian Sailing Team.
Ms Cook has a Bachelor of Applied Science at the University of Canberra/University of Sydney, and a Graduate Diploma in Education at the University of New England. During this time she was awarded a Full Blue in Rowing from both the University of Canberra and the University of Sydney. In 2018, Ms Cook completed the Company Directors Course through the Australian Institute of Company Directors, with the assistance of the ASC’s Women Leaders in Sport Grants Program. In 2015 she was recognised as one of Australia’s 100 Women of Influence in the Young Leaders Category, in 2019 she was received the Distinguished Alumni Award from the University of New England, and her rowing program at Kinross Wolaroi School won the World Rowing Sustainability Award for their Spring Creek Regeneration Project.
Ms Cook has been a broadcast commentator at the Henley Royal Regatta since 2015, and for World Rowing at World Championships and World Cups since 2013. She is the President of Sydney University Boat Club and a Trustee of the Laurie Stepto Trust which awards an annual scholarship to a talented young rower in New South Wales. Ms Cook was elected as a Steward of Henley Royal Regatta in 2018. She currently works as the Head Rowing Coach and Athlete Development Coordinator at Kinross Wolaroi School in Orange, and was recently appointed as a member of the newly formed National Sports Tribunal. In 2019, Sarah and her husband Tobias welcomed their first child, Astrid.
Georgia Beattie is CEO of Bulla Park, Australia’s largest organic mushroom farm.
She is a modern farmer embracing the use of technology to achieve fast growth, she specialises as a turnaround CEO in agriculture, manufacturing and FMCG businesses. She began her career in the startup space Founding wine packaging business Lupé Wines in 2010. The company created innovative IP to manufacture a single serve glass of wine and raised venture capital to expand quickly into events, hotel minibars and airlines across Australia, Japan, Korea, Taiwan, China and Hong Kong. The company was acquired in 2016.
Ms Beattie spent a period in the tech industry as CEO of Realestate.com’s new venture Spacely as well as CEO of Startup Victoria before moving into agriculture. She has now fulfilled long time aspiration to get into farming as CEO of Australia’s largest organic mushroom farm Bulla Park.
Ms Beattie also contributes a significant amount of pro bono time on boards; Second Bite, Law Squared and the Australian Federal Government Accelerating Commercialisation Programme.
Ben Dodwell brings a vast amount of corporate experience to the Rowing Australia Board and is the current Head of Diversified Development at Charter Hall and ASX listed real estate funds management business with funds under management in excess of $38 Billion. Ben joined Charter Hall following the acquisition of Folkestone in November 2018, and was Head of Real Estate at Folkestone since 2011.
Previously he has held a number of senior executive roles at Stockland and Lend Lease where he has been responsible for the operations and profitability of significant real estate investment portfolios and development pipelines.
Ben is an Olympic, World Championship and Commonwealth Games rowing medallist having attended three Olympics, six World Championships, and three Commonwealth Regattas and is also the winner of seven Kings Cup medals. Ben’s service to the rowing community includes his membership to the Audit and Risk Committee and Chair of the Renumerations and Nominations Committee. Ben is McVilly-Pearce rower number 481.
Andrew Michelmore AO
Andrew Michelmore has over 35 years’ of experience in the metal and mining industry working both in Australia and overseas. He is a former CEO of MMG Limited, who own and operate a portfolio of world-class base metal mining operations, development projects and exploration fields. Mr Michelmore also worked for many years with Western Mining Cooperation (WMC) holding several senior roles in the company, including the role of CEO.
He is currently the Chairman of the Jean Hailes Foundation for Women’s Health, a non-for-profit organisation providing important services for women from adolescence to mid-life and beyond. He is also the Chairman of the Council of Ormond College at the University of Melbourne and also chairs the Board of Century Aluminum Co.
Mr Michelmore represented Australia at three World Rowing Championships (’74, ’75 and ’79), winning gold in the Lightweight Men’s Four in 1974 and bronze in the same boat class the following year. He is a member of Melbourne University Boat Club, is a former President of Oxford University Boat Club and stroked the winning crews for the Oxford-Cambridge Boat Race in 1977 and 1978. He is McVilly-Pearce pin number 224.
Mr Michelmore holds a First Class Honours degree in Chemical Engineering from the University of Melbourne and a Masters of Arts in Politics, Philosophy and Economics from Oxford University in the UK.
He currently lives in Melbourne with his wife Janet and has two adult children.
Director, Athletes’ Representative
David Crawshay OAM
David Crawshay is the Chair of the RA Athletes’ Commission, a role he assumed in October 2020.
Mr Crawshay first competed for Australia at the Nations Cup in the U23 Men’s Quadruple Sculls at Copenhagen, Denmark in 2000, where he finished with a silver medal. The next year he competed in his first Senior team at the World Rowing Championships in Lucerne, Switzerland. He has represented Australia at 10 World Championships, finishing with three medals in the Men’s Quadruple Sculls. In 2008, he partnered with Scott Brennan to win gold at the Beijing Olympics Games in the Men’s Double Sculls. Mr Crawshay has also competed in another two Olympics – Athens in 2004 and London in 2012. He is McVilly-Pearce pin number 599.
Away from rowing, Mr Crawshay graduated with a Bachelor of Laws from Charles Darwin University, having studied remotely during his last years of rowing, as well as a Graduate Diploma of Legal Practice from the College of Law. He previously graduated with a Bachelor of Arts (Hons) from the University of Melbourne. He worked at Melbourne law firm JRT Partnership before being appointed to the Administrative Appeals Tribunal in 2019, where he currently hears appeals in the Migration Division.
Mr Crawshay lives in Melbourne with his wife Siobhan, a sports dietitian. They have a daughter and two sons.