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australian rowers profiles and history

Margot Foster AM

Melbourne University Ladies’ Rowing Club
1981 – Interstate Women’s Four Championship emergency
1982 – Interstate Women’s Four Championship bow – First
1983 – Interstate Women’s Four Championship emergency
1984 – Interstate Women’s Four Championship bow – First
1984 – Olympic Games – Women’s Coxed Four stroke – Bronze
1985 – Interstate Women’s Four Championship three seat – First
1985 – World Championships – Women’s Pair stroke – Eighth
1986 – Interstate Women’s Four Championship stroke – First
1986 – Commonwealth Games – Women’s Eight stroke – Gold
1986 – World Championships – Women’s Pair – Tenth
1985-1992 – Member of the AOC Athletes Commission
1985-1992 – Member of the AOC Education Commission
1988 – Interstate Women’s Four Championship stroke – First
1989-91 – Secretary General of ARC following John Boultbee
1990 – Member of the Melbourne Olympic Bid Committee
1991 – Trans Tasman Under 23 Series Australian team manager
1998 – Board Member of the Australian Sports Commission
2002-2004 – Board Member SPARC – New Zealand Sports Commission

Margot on the podium at the 1984 Olympic Games second from the right

Margot's rowing carer began she was a student at the University of Melbourne and resident at Trinity College. A women's intercollegiate rowing competition had been revived in the mid 70s by fellow MUBC member Barb Fenner who was a resident at Ormond College. In third year Margot was persuaded to give rowing a go and the rest, they say, is history. Margot competed for Trinity for 3 years and then made for her first Victorian team.

Margot continued rowing until 1988 when the Australian selectors decided not to send any women to the Seoul Olympic Games. By this time Margot had been appointed to the inaugural Australian Olympic Committee Athletes' Commission of which she was deputy chair to water polo Olympian Peter Montgomery. That appointment was for 8 years. She was also appointed to the AOC's Education Commission thus beginning her next career in sports administration and leadership.

Margot has served on numerous boards and committees in sport. She followed John Boultbee as Secretary General for Rowing Australia, was appointed by then Premier John Cain to the board of Melbourne's 1996 Olympic Bid Committee and by Federal Sports Minister and fellow rower Jackie Kelly to the Australian Sports Commission. Margot also spent 2 years on the board of SPARC the New Zealand equivalent of the ASC. In addition to other non sporting boards, she has been on boards for Rowing Victoria, Australian & New Zealand Sports Law Association, Melbourne University Ladies' Rowing Club, University of Melbourne Sport & Physical Recreation Committee and the University's Blues Board, FISA Masters Commission, Womensport Australia and founder of Womensport & Recreation Victoria and Melbourne & Olympic Parks Trust. Margot continues to combine the running of her legal practice with her roles on the boards of Gymnastics Australia, Vicsport, Australian Bobsleigh & Skeleton Association, WOMCC (Women of the MCC), is a member of the disciplinary tribunal panel for Football Federation Victoria and is Patron of Melbourne Girls' School's rowing programme. With her combination of years in sport and in the law her interest has also been in the good governance of the sports bodies with which she has been involved.

Margot’s father John competed in water polo in 1952 and 1856. Her brother Peter competed in 1988 winning bronze in the K2 1000. The IOC records show them as the only family to have competed in three different sports.

Andrew Guerin 2010

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