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australian rowers profiles and history

John Harry OAM

Mercantile Rowing Club (VIC)

1964 – Victorian Public Schools Head of the River – First

1967 – Interstate Men’s Eight Championship five seat – Fourth

1967 – Australian National Selection Trials Men’s Coxed Four three seat-Second

1967 – USA National Championships – Men’s Coxed Four three seat – Second

1967 – FISA North American Championships – Men’s Coxed Four three seat – First

1967 – European Championships – Men’s Coxed Four three seat- Eighth

1968 – Interstate Men’s Eight Championship five seat – Second

1968 – Olympic Games – Men’s Coxed Four – selected by AARC but rejected by AOF for team size reasons.

1969 – Interstate Men’s Eight Championship five seat – First

1970 – Interstate Men’s Eight Championship five seat – First

1972 – Interstate Men’s Eight Championship five seat – Third

1973 – Interstate Men’s Eight Championship four seat – Second

1974 – Interstate Men’s Eight Championship four seat – Eliminated in repechage

1983 – Interstate Men’s Youth Eight Championship coach – Second

1983 – Australian Men’s Under 23 Eight Championship coach - First;

1992 – National Regatta Organising Committee Chair.

John after the Melbourne Grammar crew won in 1964 - John is on the left

To provide some background to this era, the World Championships for rowing commenced in 1962 and were held every four years until 1974 when they were held annually. In the other years, FISA endorsed other events such as the European Championships to provide racing.

 In 1967, it endorsed the North American Championships as a FISA event and European crews attended the regatta at the expense of the regatta committee. Australian was represented by several crews including this coxed four from Victoria.  The race was therefore against the best in the world, endorsed by FISA and so the first sweep gold medal won by Australia in such company.

The 1967 coxed four pictured after winning their Championship
l-r: Hubert Frederico (coach), David Douglas (2), Graeme Boykett (stroke), John Harry (3), Tom Daffy (cox) and Stephen Gillon (bow)

 John has maintained his interest and commitment to the sport as a competitor, coach, administrator and fundraiser throughout his life whilst pursuing a very successful career as a partner of major national law firm and family commitments. His continuing support of rowing and of his club is admirable.

John was recognised with an Australian Honour in the Queens Birthday Honours List in June 2021. His citation was as follows.

For service to the community, to rowing, and to the legal profession.

Lasallian Foundation

 Chairman, 2014-2018.

 Director, 2013-2018.


 Director, NotFair Art Foundation, 2015-2017.

 Chairman, Brainwave Australia, 2003-2007.

 Director, Melbourne Grammar School Foundation, 1997-2000.

 Director, Life Education Centre (now Life Education) Victoria, 1986-1987.

 Director, The Queen Elizabeth II Diamond Jubilee Trust, 1985-1987.


 Chairman, Henry Buck Pty Ltd, 2014.

 Founder and Chairman, Arcadis Capital Pty Ltd, 2002-2013.

 Chairman, Sedimentary Holdings Limited, 2000-2006.

 Chairman, Tolhurst Noall Limited, 2000-2005.

 Vice-President, Singapore-Australia Business Council, 1996-1999.

Allens (formerly Allens Arthur Robinson - AAR)

 Inaugural Director, AAR, 2001-2002.

 Founder and Managing Director, Allens Business Solutions, 2001-2002.

 Managing Partner, Asia, 1996-2002.

 Leader, Asia Practice Group, Allens Arthur Robinson Alliance, 1986-1990.

 Partner, Arthur Robinson and Hedderwicks, 1984.

 Partner, Hedderwick, Fookes and Alston, 1982.

Law Other

 Member, Law Institute of Victoria, 1971-2005.

 Former Honorary Solicitor, Hanover Welfare Services (Launch Housing).

 Advisory Board Member, Asian Law Centre, The University of Melbourne, 1992-1995.

 Member, Banking and Consumer Credit Committee, Law Council of Australia, 1982-


 Member, Australian Mining and Petroleum Law Association, 1982-2003.

 Senior Legal Officer, CRA Limited, 1972-1977.

 Solicitor, Supreme Court of Victoria, 1971.

Rowing Victoria

 Inductee, Hall of Fame, 2015.

 Assistant Secretary, Victorian Rowing Association, 1971-1972.

 Represented Victoria seven times in the King's Cup championships for eights, winning

twice in 1969 and 1970.

Rowing Other

 Chairman, National Regatta Organising Committee, Rowing Australia, 1992.

 Chairman, Melburnia Club, Melbourne Boys Grammar Rowing, 1988-1990. 

 President, Melbourne Girls Grammar School Rowing Club, 1982-1983.

 Captain, Mercantile Rowing Club, 1974-1975.

 Trustee, Mercantile Rowing Club Foundation, since circa 2015.

Wild Fire Wines

 Co-Founder, since 2018. 


Andrew Guerin
Sept 2015 - updated June 2021

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