Elected Board Members
Board members serve for a one-year term and are elected by the members at the club's annual membership meeting each January. Club members, contact the club President by our December Planning meeting if you are interested in serving on or nominating a member to the board.
The following elected positions comprise the Board of Directors (starred positions are officers):
Greg Momber was born and raised in the Grand Rapids area. One of 10 children, he was raised on the family farm where outdoor activities were just a way of life. His family was very active in fishing, hunting, and sports including, softball, baseball, football, wrestling, and boxing. Greg graduated from Kenowa Hills High School, promptly went off to Ohio Institute of Technology, and graduated with a Bachelor in Electronics Engineering. After working for a number of years engineering computers and control systems, he returned to the Grand Rapids area in 1988.
After many years of participation in softball and golf, it was time to explore other avenues of staying fit. In 2012, Greg and Judi were invited to a free learn to row day, so they decided to give it a try and see what it was all about. They were hooked from the very first row and promptly pulled many of their other family members in to the sport. Greg is thrilled with the fact that rowing offers as much challenge you choose to put forth. Truly this sport does take a lifetime to master.
Greg is currently the Applications Engineering Manager at Burke E. Porter Machinery where he is heavily involved in monetizing solutions and project management. Greg plans to be involved in the financial aspects of the club; looking for ways of minimizing the outflow of cash, while maximizing the return on the expenditures and offer support to the club wherever possible.
Laurie first got involved with rowing by being a rowing parent for her daughter, who rowed at Forest Hills Central and Michigan State. She took a Learn To Row class in 2003 after having a hip replacement - and the rest is history. She never crosses a bridge without looking to see if it's good rowing water ands one of the crazy people who rowed on December 13th on the Grand River. She rows on the Muskegon River by Hardy Dam in her single and in an 8+ with GRRA. One of her proudest moments was rowing the 26.2 mile/43,164 m Grand River Marathon Regatta last fall in a quad. In the winter, she rows 5 days a week with the Caloosa Coast Rowing Club in Cape Coral, FL. In February, she stroked an 8+ with the Sarasota Rowers at the World Class Nathan Benderson Rowing Park, where she also served as a dock master. Most regattas you can find her working as a dock master with her green flag and tennis ball on a stick.
When Laurie is explaining rowing to parents and students, she tells them that in rowing "nobody sits the bench," every person on the team rows and competes, every practice, every regatta. She values each and every rower and supporter of Grand Rapids Rowing. Where else can a 58 year old have so much fun? Whether it's rowing at the boathouse, racing at Leelanau or just hanging out on shore, it's always good friends and good times while getting one of the best cardiovascular workouts there is - all without the pounding on the aging joints that other competitive sports entail. Laurie works at both Metro Health Hospital and Centre for Plastic Surgery as a Board Certified Surgical Technologist in the operating room.
Lydia moved from a small town on the east side of Michigan to Grand Rapids 4 years ago. She longingly watched rowers on the Grand River while passing them on her way home from work. She finally decided to get out of her comfort zone and take a learn to row class and immediately fell in love! The sound of the paddle hitting the water, the cool rush of wind on her sweaty face, and the steady flow of each stroke was all she needed to get her hooked!
Ruth began to love rowing while her two youngest sons rowed for Forest Hills Rowing teams. Though intimidated by all the nuances of a stroke, she was convinced by her son David and husband John, to take a Learn to Row class in 2014, and has been hooked ever since. She and John boast contributing 2 of the 3 largest handicaps to the GRRA Masters Program. Sitting on a Board of Directors has never been an aspiration of Ruth's, but after volunteering for rowing for 9 years, she has decided to join the members who are committed to keep the association alive and functioning.
Ruth has always loved the rewards of physical activity, including monkey bars, tree climbing, softball, tennis, volleyball, biking, hiking, springboard diving, and landscaping. The low-impact, high cardio workout aspects of rowing make it a great choice, though wearing full-body spandex with your best friends, both on the river and to after practice events, took some adjustment.
Ruth attended Calvin College for 3 years, then received her degree in Occupational Therapy form Western Michigan University. She worked an exciting 15 years in mental health, 20 interesting years with developmental disabilities and currently has a job she loves working with young adults through Grand Rapids Public Schools.
In her spare time, Ruth loves to spend time with her family, read and quilt.
Amy West (interim)
Amy is currently holding two positions on our board. See below to learn more about her.
Julie began rowing when her second son began HS rowing as a freshman at FHE. Rowing has since become the 3rd most important thing in her life, right behind God and family. She has always loved the water, growing up in Empire and having a father who was an avid fisherman and charter boat captain. Currently, Julie coaches while competing on the Masters' team; continually honing her skills behind the oar.
Julie holds degrees from NMC, Hope College and GVSU. She has spent over 25 years in education and is currently the Lead GED Teacher for Youth Build @ Bethany Christian Services. She also sits on the board of Froebel USA and is a guest lecturer on the topic of design education. People seem to like her because she is polite and rarely late. She likes to eat ice cream and really enjoys a nice pair of slacks.
Amy has lived in the Grand Rapids area most of her life. She graduated from Davenport College and GRCC with an Associate Degree. Currently she works part time as an X-ray tech at an Orthopedic office, teaches Ballroom dancing during the school year, teaches Lead Paint Safety classes, and maintains rental property.
In her spare time, she enjoys sewing, dancing, yardwork, old movies and keeping up with 2 grown sons and 4 grandchildren.
Steve, although born in Nebraska, was fortunate enough to get to grow up in Texas. He has also lived in Minnesota, Iowa, Wisconsin, and Louisiana, before moving from New Orleans to Grand Rapids in 1987 “for the nightlife” (not really). He is a physician with a private practice in the field of Age Management Medicine, Clinical Lipidology, and Hormone Replacement. In addition to having had a long career in Family Medicine, he has also practiced Hyperbaric & Undersea Medicine. Certified as a Divemaster, he loves SCUBA diving, as well as sailing, and it is rumored that he even keeps a motorboat around somewhere. He has also previously been a member of the US Coast Guard Auxiliary. He took a Learn to Row class in 2013, and greatly enjoys rowing in doubles, quads, fours, and eights, as well as in RiverDancer, his vintage single scull. His charming wife Bonnie, lovely daughter Courtney, and supportive son, Peter, have learned to put up with his rowing habit.
Steve’s goal as Safety Director is to help maintain the personal safety of all GRRA members, students, and guests, both on and off the water.
Director of Rowing
Dave Morrison comes to us with 40 years experience as a rower and coach. He currently coaches our adult recreational team. He and his wife, Lynn, have two adult children and live in Kalamazoo. When he's not on the river, Dave enjoys spending time with family and friends, and renovating his garage.
Junior Booster Representative
Equipment Selection Committee - Christina Charnitski, chair
Development Committee - Jen Schafer, chair