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Georgia Tech Rowing Club Records

Identifier: UA442

  • Staff Only


This collection contains records created by and relating to the Georgia Tech Rowing Club (also known as the Georgia Tech Crew Team) from 1987-2002.


  • 1987-2002
  • Majority of material found within 1991 - 1998


General Physical Description

(four full-size document cases and one half-size document case)

Restrictions: Access


Restrictions: Use

Permission to publish materials from this collection must be obtained from the Head of Archives and Special Collections.


1.8 Linear Feet

Scope and Contents

This collection includes 62 folders of records and correspondence from 1987 until 2002. Many of the records deal with the financial side of the Rowing Club as well as results from regattas in which the team participated throughout this time period. Other records discuss club membership, history, awards, and the club's 1996 suspension from Georgia Tech following a trailer crash.

History of the Georgia Tech Rowing Club

In 1985, two runners for the Georgia Institute of Technology (Georgia Tech), Michael May and Mark Turner, learned that they were no longer eligible to compete in National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) track and field and cross country events, due to the fact that they had already participated for four years. The two men decided to form a rowing club at Georgia Tech. The next year, the Institute granted a charter to the Georgia Tech Rowing Club (GTRC), officially recognizing it as a sport club. In 1988, Mr. John P. Hunter, Jr., an alumnus of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology Crew Team (one of the elite crew teams in the nation) and a resident of Atlanta, helped to establish the club by offering financial, moral, and practical support as its largest benefactor. He worked with Saint Andrew Catholic Church (on the Chattahoochee River in Roswell, Georgia) to provide storage and practice space for the fledgling team. The church agreed to donate land to GTRC if they would help establish and coach a high school crew team, the Saint Andrew Rowing Club. GTRC readily agreed, and now that it had practice space, began to train for the many regattas in which it would participate.

The men's lightweight team, one component of the co-ed GTRC, earned its first medal, a bronze, at the Dad Vail, the national championship regatta for smaller collegiate teams, in 1993. Rob Canavan, an alumnus of Temple University's rowing team, was hired as Georgia Tech's head coach in 1995, and still serves as the head coach as of 2012. In 1996, on their way to the Dad Vail, the GTRC was involved in a trailer accident, destroying many of its boats and injuring some of the team members. Georgia Tech's administration demanded the team return to campus, but the team ignored these orders and competed in the regatta. It came in 3rd place overall during the Dad Vail, making it the best finish for both the women's team and the GTRC overall. Unfortunately, when the team returned to campus, it was placed on suspension for one year due to its disregard of Institute rules. Although it was allowed to practice off campus, the team was no longer officially sanctioned for the 1996 calendar year, and it did not receive funding from the Georgia Tech Student Government Association.

In 1997, with the team back on its feet, they competed in the Southern Regional Championships and other nationally recognized regattas, and at the end of the rowing season, the men's team finished as the ninth-best team nationally, placing along with historically successful Ivy League teams who had been competing for over one hundred years. The women's team also earned silver medals in two well-known regattas, making 1997 its best season to date.

Each year the GTRC continued improving, and although John Hunter died in 1999, the team continued to benefit from his guidance and support, and in 2009, the men's lightweight team won the gold medal at the ACRA National Championship regatta.

Throughout the years, the GTRC has fought valiantly to have crew recognized as a varsity sport by the Georgia Tech Athletic Association. This was one of John Hunter's foremost goals in acting as a liasion between GTRC and the Institute.

As of 2012, rowing is still recognized as a club sport by the Georgia Institute of Technology, as opposed to a varsity sport, but the GTRC is known as one of the premiere collegiate crew teams in the Southeast, and it has consistently medaled in the Dad Vail and American Collegiate Rowing Association (ACRA) National Championship regatta for the past twelve years.

Sources: Georgia Tech Rowing Club; Georgia Tech Crew Alumni.


Arranged in alphabetical order by folder. Within folders all items are kept in their original order.

Other Finding Aids

A print copy of this finding aid is available in the Georgia Tech Archives reading room.


Donations, 2002 and 2009 (accession numbers 2002.023 and 2009.071).

Separated Materials

The photographs have been processed separately (VAUA442). Artifacts, including medals and awards, have been separated and placed in the Artifacts collection.

General Physical Description

(four full-size document cases and one half-size document case)

Processing Information

Christine de Catanzaro and Lindsay Resnick processed this collection in July 2012.

Inventory of the Georgia Tech Rowing Club, 1987-2002
Copyright July 2012
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Script of description
Language of description note
Finding aid is written in English.

Repository Details

Part of the Archives and Special Collections, Library, Georgia Institute of Technology Repository

Georgia Institute of Technology
266 4th Street, NW
Atlanta 30332-0900 USA