Rowing Australia (RA) salutes its powerful, driven and inspiring female leaders, athletes and changemakers as it joins sporting organisations around the globe in celebrating International Women’s Day (IWD).
Sport has long been a driver of social and societal change and rowing is proud to be playing its part in elevating and fostering a new generation of trailblazers on and off the water in keeping with IWD 2023’s theme of #EmbraceEquity.
“For Rowing Australia, it is entirely fitting that the theme of IWD 2023 is #EmbraceEquity. Our Rowing in Australia Strategic Plan, STRONGER TOGETHER, identifies the opportunity to embrace diversity, equality, and inclusion across the sport nationally and at all levels,” says RA chief operating officer Sarah Cook OLY, the dual-Olympian now leading key strategies across the sport.
“An example of the work we’re doing in this space is the RA Women in HP (High Performance) Coaching Project, which is currently in Phase Two thanks to funding support from the Australian Sports Commission’s Women Leaders in Sport Program.
“And we are excited to be working with Work180 to conduct a pilot program with two of our leading performance pathway clubs, Mercantile Rowing Club and Sydney University Boat Club. Work180 will conduct an Equity Audit of both clubs and then provide expert consultant support to implement the resulting action plans.
“We are grateful to both clubs for embracing this opportunity and RA will also be looking to develop an Equity Toolkit which will be available for all rowing clubs and schools in Australia.”
Rowing is full of stories of inspiring women, from the volunteers who are the bedrock of our clubs and schools to the athletes who power our Olympic boats and the coaches who guide them, including the nation’s top female rowing coach, Ellen Randell.
Another is Kendall Brodie, who is a member of the Men’s National Training Centre in Canberra and became the first female to cox the Australian men’s eight in 2018.
Kendall’s notable international rowing achievements include winning the Grand Challenge Cup in the men’s eight at the Henley Royal Regatta, four silver medals at Rowing World Cups and a silver at the 2018 World Rowing Championships in Bulgaria, making history as the first female to podium in the men’s eight at a Rowing World Championships.
Most recently, Kendall steered the Australian men’s eight to a Bronze at the 2022 World Championships in Prague. Kendall also holds multiple state and national titles domestically, becoming the first female to win the Interstate Kings Cup for NSW in 2019.
Off the water Kendall is studying a graduate certificate in Sports Coaching at The University of Queensland and also holds a Bachelor of Design from the University of New South Wales, having won a university prize in design.
Happy International Women’s Day. Rowing Australia pledges to walk the walk and #EmbraceEquity on every step of our journey.