The New York State Collegiate Rowing Association (NYSCRA) elected a new Board of Directors in late September during the annual members meeting. Of major note from the meeting was the appointment of secretary to Elizabeth Ostermeier-Denecke, the head coach of the University at Buffalo Rowing Club. The NYSCRA is a not for profit association organized for the charitable and educational purpose of supporting intercollegiate rowing through competition and other appropriate activities. Each year they run the New York State Collegiate Rowing Championships.
Covid paused the regular rowing season back in March and throughout the fall. “When Becky Robinson of Ithaca College reached out to the schools that attend the NYSCRA Championships back in April about being on the regatta committee, I knew I wanted to be involved. It is a great way to help grow our sport and learn from other coaches as well,” said Ostermeier-Denecke. Zoom and the ease of online meetings helped pull the rowing coaching community together. “I am grateful for the opportunity to sit on the board and work with this group of outstanding New York State collegiate rowing coaches.”
Ostermeier-Denecke was named head coach of the UB Rowing Club in 2018. As the women’s varsity coach she led her boats to win a silver medal at the 2019 New York State Championship, gold in the varsity 4 at the 2019 Head of the Niagara, silver in the varsity at the 2019 Head of the Genesee and gold at the 2018 Head of the Genesee. Prior to serving as the head coach of the UB Rowing Club, Ostermeier-Denecke served as an assistant coach (2004-2013) with the UB Varsity Women’s Team. She led the lightweight women’s 8 to win a bronze medal at the Dad Vail in 2007. That same eight earned top 10 ranking in the Lightweight collegiate polls. In 2008 she became the novice women’s coach. She coached them to a gold medal win in the Novice Women’s 8 at the 2009 Dad Vail. In 2010 she coached the novice women’s 8 to a silver medal at the Dad Vail. During her tenure she helped the UB Women’s Rowing team earn 3 women’s team titles at the Dad Vail from 2008-2010. In 2009 the women won the combined men’s and women’s team point trophy at the Dad Vail as well.
Ostermeier-Denecke started rowing as a college walk on her freshman year at George Mason University. She became secretary of the club her sophomore year and president her junior year. As president of the club she was instrumental in elevating the team to NCAA varsity status in fall of 1997. She continued to train hard and earned the title of team captain in both 97-98 and 98-99, as well as, a rowing scholarship. Ostermeier-Denecke found a home with rowing and began training to row at a higher level post college. She won several US National titles while sculling.
MEET THE NEW YORK STATE COLLEGIATE ROWING ASSOCIATION BOARD
President - Becky Robinson was elected as President of the NYSCRA. She is the Head Coach of Women's Rowing and Sculling at Ithaca College (Division III, Central Region). Becky has been a rowing coach for 27 years. When she isn't working with her athletes you can find her training dogs and competing with her dogs. Did you know Becky studied to be a physical therapist at her alma mater Ithaca College?
Vice President - Jim Lister has been elected as Vice President of the NYSCRA. He is the Head Coach of Men's and Women's Rowing at Hamilton College (Division III, Central Region). Jim has been coaching rowing for 28 years. Outside of rowing Jim enjoys mountain biking and hiking with his family. Did you know that Jim studied to be a biology teacher at the University at Albany?
Treasurer - Todd Rutecki was elected as Treasurer of the NYSCRA. He is the Head Coach of Men's and Women's Rowing at Albany (Club, Capital Region). Todd has been a rowing coach for 25 years. With 3 young kids at home, he's happy to say that is where his time is spent when not coaching. Any "free" time is spent restoring our 100 year old house. He loves to discuss the merits of original wooden double hung windows vs. replacement windows. Did you know that Todd studied to be a child/adolescent therapist at the University at Albany?
Secretary - Elizabeth Ostermeier-Denecke was elected as Secretary of the NYSCRA. She is the Head Coach of Men's and Women's Rowing at the University at Buffalo (Club, Western Region). Elizabeth has been coaching rowing for 22 years. Outside of rowing, Elizabeth is a full time mom of three kids (8, 7, 5) and loves to workout. Did you know she has a masters degree in Sociology from George Mason University because she wanted to be a lawyer?
Representative - John Boyd was elected to the NYSCRA Board as a Representative. He is the Head Coach of Women's Rowing at Iona College (Division I, Long Island Region). John has been coaching rowing for 12 years. Outside of rowing you can find John hiking trails with his wife and dog. Did you know that John studied finance at his alma mater Iona College?
Representative - Jessica Deitrick was elected to the NYSCRA Board as a Representative. She is the Head Coach of Women's Rowing at Colgate University (Divsion I, Central Region). She has been a rowing coach for seven years. When Jessica isn't coaching, she enjoys hiking, golfing, baking and playing with her dogs. Did you know that she studied to be an elementary school teacher at Hobart and William Smith College?
Representative - Jonathan Covney was elected to the NYSCRA Board as a Representative. He is the Head Coach of Men's and Women's Rowing at St. John Fisher College (Division III, Western Region). Jonathan has been coaching rowing for 10 years. Outside of rowing you can find him golfing, biking and playing men's league hockey. Did you know Jonathan studied sport management at Ithaca College in hopes of working in the front office of an NHL team?