BRUNSWICK, Maine –– Bowdoin Rowing welcomes Cassidy Donohue ’21 and Andy Bolender ’21 as the 2020-2021 Men’s and Women’s Captains. Donohue and Bolender, who both joined the team as first-years, will replace outgoing Women’s Captain Julie Scholes ’20 and Men’s Captain Gianni Jannke ’20.
Communications Officer Matt Donnelly ’22, Women’s Steward Lucy O’Sullivan ’23, Men’s Steward Cameron Snow ’22, and Operations Steward Ben Ross ’22 will form the rest of the leadership team.
Donohue, a native of Boulder, Colorado, learned to row at Bowdoin as a first year in 2017. In Boulder, she grew up ski racing, but rowing was the perfect college sport to balance her competitive spirit with enjoying the outdoors. At Bowdoin, she found speed quickly and has represented Bowdoin Rowing at the Head of the Charles Regatta, New England Rowing Championships, and Dad Vail Regatta.
“I am ecstatic about the growth of the team on the women’s side this past year,” Donohue said. “I can’t wait to build on that momentum and continue the legacy of Julie and Gianni. Rowing has been such a positive experience for me throughout college, and I’m looking forward to giving back and helping others learn the joys of the sport I love.”
Bolender, from Seattle, Washington, has been a coxswain for eight years. He started rowing in 2012 with Mount Baker Crew in Seattle before finding immediate success in collegiate rowing, including several medals at the New England Rowing Championships and Head of the Charles Regatta.
“The team has been the highlight of my college experience, and I’m grateful for the opportunity to take a central role in its leadership this year,” Bolender said. “It was heartbreaking to lose this season, but I know that the team will come back with an even greater dedication to this amazing sport.”
Coaches Doug Welling and Ry Hills are both excited to welcome Bolender and Donohue.
“The incoming group of officers radiates a passion for rowing that is absolutely contagious,” Welling said. “Coach Hills and I have been so impressed with this group’s dedication to the team and their empathy towards their teammates. We are very excited for Andy and Cassidy to add their signature to the 2020-2021 season ahead.”
Donohue and Bolender take over the captaincy from Scholes and Jannke, who led the team through record membership in fall 2019, unprecedented participation at the Head of the Charles Regatta in fall 2019, an early departure from Camp Bob due to the COVID-19 crisis, and the transition to online activities during the remote portion of the spring semester.
“I’ve known Andy and Cassidy for three years, and I’m proud to call them both teammates and friends,” Jannke said. “I could not be more excited for them both, and I know the team is in great hands during these unusual times.”
“It has been such an incredible honor to be a leader on this team, and part of that greatness has been getting to watch Andy and Cassidy grow as both teammates and leaders.” Scholes said. “I am delighted for the team to have such dedicated rowers and wonderful people as captains who I know are going to lead this team to an incredible year.”
Welling and Hills thanked Jannke and Scholes for their service to the team.
“Gianni and Julie leave tremendous shoes to fill and a simple thank you does not communicate the time, care, and ‘behind the scenes team transformation’ that these two have orchestrated,” Welling said. “Coach Hills and I will deeply miss their smile, presence, and friendship. Both Julie and Gianni have not only poured their rowing heart and soul into this past year, but into four full years at Bowdoin. We extend our deepest gratitude to you both and look forward to hearing of all the adventures yet to come.”
“Julie and Gianni embody the essence of this program, work hard and have fun,” Hills added. “They poured their souls into the leadership of this team and are leaving us with a group that reflects not only their true love of the sport of rowing, but also their desire for a team full of camaraderie, compassion, and mutual support. I will miss their presence, and I am so grateful for their friendship.”