OUR STAFF

JENN GIBBONS

EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR

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Jenn first fell in love with rowing as a freshman when she was recruited in the cafeteria at Michigan State University. After graduation, she moved to Chicago and began coaching junior athletes at St. Ignatius. In the fall of 2007, she co-founded Recovery on Water (ROW), a rowing team for patients and survivors of breast cancer. Jenn went on to be hired as ROW’s first full-time staff member in the fall of 2012. Since then, she has helped grow ROW into a sustainable nonprofit, providing weekly programs on and off the water as well as a Power10 Camp, a summer camp for women diagnosed with breast cancer. All while somehow finding time to raise funds rowing and biking the 1,500 miles around Lake Michigan. In her time at ROW, Jenn has had an opportunity to do a little bit of everything from leading grassroots fundraising for a boathouse, to partnering on marketing campaigns with top brands like Athleta, to filling gas tanks, to coaching and developing innovative programming, all with the purpose of changing lives. Her contributions to the sport have been recognized by USRowing as Masters Coach of the Year in 2011 and more recently with the Anita DeFrantz Award in 2018.  Jenn and her work have also been honored with the Athena-Foundation Chicago Young Professional Award and Michigan State Alumni Sparty Innovator Award among others. Jenn is thrilled to be joining the George Pocock Rowing Foundation this fall, carrying on a legacy of using this powerful sport to change lives. 

PATTY FINNEY

Administrative Director

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Patty is the Administrative Director for the Pocock Foundation which includes supporting all segments of the Foundation including Row to the Future, Row for the Cure in addition to the Pocock Rowing Center and Renton Rowing Center. ​ Patty began rowing at LaSalle University in Philadelphia and continued her rowing career training at Vesper Boat Club before she decided to move to Montana and, ultimately, Seattle. Before coming to work at the Pocock Foundation, she was an executive administrative assistant, a human resources generalist, and a bookkeeper. Her wealth of skills in almost every arena of administration keeps the boathouses of the Pocock Foundation in ship-shape. When not at work, Patty enjoys spending time with her husband, two wonderful children, and friends.

ARSHAY COOPER

NATIONAL INCLUSION DIRECTOR

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After years of working in the foodservice industry, Arshay Cooper returns to his true passion of working with young people. Arshay has coached kids across the nation, been a youth program guidance counselor for the Victory Outreach's Midwest/Gulf Coast region, as well as initiating several rowing programs for low-income youth across the country, so that other young people can experience the profound changes that happen on the water.

Arshay Cooper is the writer of the memoir turned documentary film, A Most Beautiful Thing, and comes to the GPRF to lead the vision to remove barriers to the sport of rowing through our A Most Beautiful Thing Inclusion fund. Arshay is not only a rower, but also a Benjamin Franklin award-winning author, A Golden Oar recipient for his contributions to the sport of rowing, a motivational speaker, and an activist, particularly around issues of accessibility for low-income families.  

PADRAIC MCGOVERN

Director of Rowing Operations

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As the Director of Rowing Operations, Padraic is responsible for the safe, sustainable and successful operation of the Pocock Rowing Center and Renton Rowing Center. Padraic began rowing as a youth in Point Pleasant, NJ. After rowing at Saint Mary's College of California, he joined the Seattle rowing community as a sculler. Padraic has competed and coached in youth, collegiate, elite and masters programs. As the Executive Director of the Everett Rowing Association, his focus on culture and communication led significant growth in membership, youth programming and fundraising results. Padraic's experience in the construction industry and at Pocock Racing Shells brings a strategic background to our infrastructure and project management needs. Outside of the boathouse, Padraic enjoys hiking, biking, woodworking and cooking.

HEATHER ALSCHULER

STRATEGIC INITIATIVES DIRECTOR

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Heather was born and raised in Kelowna, British Columbia and might still be living there if it wasn’t for a visit from the local rowing club to her PE class during her junior year of high school. The club brought along an erg and would be awarding the fastest boy and girl in the class a free set of rowing lessons. Heather won those lessons and within a year she was racing with the Canadian Junior Development team.  Her next step was to the University of Michigan, where she was an All-American rower and Big Ten Athlete of the Year.  She then went on to row for Team Canada for five years, racing at various World Cup and World Championship regattas.  She placed 6th or higher at every international race and capped off her career in the Canadian women’s 8+ on the 2008 Olympic team.

She later ran Seattle’s Erg Ed program, which partners with the Seattle Public Schools to bring indoor rowing to every middle school student within the city through the schools’ PE programs. The program has been adopted by USRowing’s America Rows program as a model for youth indoor rowing instruction.

NELL AIELLO

DIRECTOR OF COMMUNICATIONS AND DEVELOPMENT 

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An Australian native, but American convert, Nell began rowing the summer before starting college and loved it so much, she immediately joined the crew team in her freshman year at UCLA. Her passion for the sport has resulted in her continuing to row, and coach for the last 24 years, and inspired her to open an indoor rowing studio, RowFit, in 2009, which exists today under a different name. Nell's professional experience includes digital marketing expertise, operational excellence, and a focus on relationship building, making her the ideal Director of Communications and Development for the GPRF. Nell holds an Executive MBA, and is fervent animal lover and outdoor enthusiast.

SARAH CATTO

PROGRAM MANAGER AND YOUTH HEAD COACH

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Sarah moved to Washington from Greensboro, NC. She started rowing in high school for High Point Rowing Club then rowed for Liberty University for four years. Sarah earned a bachelor's degree in Sport Management and coached at High Point Rowing and Greensboro Rowing Club in the summers. Sarah completed the Coach Across America Program, and has coached every group at Renton Rowing. In her free time, Sarah's favorite things to do are being outdoors, hiking and rock climbing. When the weather is bad, she likes to explore local coffee shops and bookstores.

KAYLA CLOUD

ERG ED & STUDENT SERVICES PROGRAM COORDINATOR 

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Kayla began rowing during her undergraduate career at Wesleyan University. As a four year varsity rower, two year CRCA All-American, first team All NESCAC pick, and co-captain, she finished her senior year with the team at their second NCAA appearance in program history. Kayla continued to row recreationally, competing with Vesper Boat Club's U23 program for a summer before becoming a coach herself. She worked as an English teacher and Boy's Rowing Coach at Choate Rosemary Hall between 2015 and 2018, traveling with the team to the Royal Henley Regatta in 2016. After her time at Choate, she decided to focus her energies on developing athletes on the water and enrolled in the Exercise and Sport Studies master's program at Smith College where Kayla served as a Graduate Assistant Coach and graduated May 2020. Her love of rowing remains her drive in all that she does to spread knowledge and access about this wonderful sport. Kayla is delighted to be joining the team at the George Pocock Rowing Foundation and looks forward to continuing the mission of the program!

MICHAEL GREEN

VISTA Erg and Student Services Data Analyst

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Michael Green is joining the GPRF team through the AmeriCorps and Up2Us VISTA intern program. He will be working as a rowing researcher to optimize the efficiency of our data collection and analysis to help us better understand the impact of rowing on the lives of the youth in our communities. Michael is currently a senior at Dartmouth College working towards completion of his degree with a concentration in Anthropology, specifically related to social determinants of health. He is a member of the Dartmouth College Men's Rowing team and believes strongly in the power of rowing to open doors and transform lives. We are thrilled to have Michael join us this year!

BEN HAGEN

DEVELOPMENT COORDINATOR

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Ben is our Development Coordinator and also coaches with the Junior team at PRC. Before joining the George Pocock Rowing Foundation staff, Ben coached at Commencement Bay Rowing Club and the University of Puget Sound. Ben is from Torrance, California; he attended the University of Puget Sound, where he graduated with a Bachelor of Science in Economics, rowing for four years. Outside rowing, Ben has a passion for all things music. He is a Co-Founder of an independent music program and is responsible for their operations and stability.

BARBARA KELLY

Accounting specialist

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Barbara joined GPRF  in July of 2019 and is our Accounting Specialist.  She brings over 7 years of non-profit bookkeeping and accounting experience with youth and arts organizations.  Barbara picked up her bookkeeping skills while assisting her husband in his consulting engineering business and serving on the boards of education advocacy organizations before applying them to a second career.

She came to rowing as an adult taking the Learn to Row program at Pocock Rowing Center in 2014.  She is still working on her stroke as much as her schedule allows, mainly in a single, but on occasion in a double with her husband. She also enjoys bicycling, hiking, and hanging out with friends and family while enjoying a good meal and glass of wine.

Barbara graduated from Seattle University in Electrical Engineering, in the 20th century, and enjoyed her career in the electronics industry prior to staying home to raise her growing family.

 

JOIN THE TEAM

Interested in joining our amazing team? We don't blame you! Check out our current job listings here

QUICK LINKS

RESOURCES

CONTACT

3320 Fuhrmann Ave E

Seattle, WA 98102

info@pocockfoundation.org

Tel: (206) 403-1195

© 2018 by George Pocock Rowing Foundation. Proudly created with Wix.com

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