Letter to Parents - January 2012
Hello Case Crew Parents!
For some of you my crew emails are old hat, but for those new to the team please let me introduce myselfÖ
My name is Doug Rathburn, and I am the alumni coordinator for Case Crew. As such, I am the president of the
Spartan Alumni Rowing Association, SARA, which is its own 501(c)3 organization. However, SARA is 100%
committed to giving the team the resources needed to be fast and at the same time serve as a connection
for alums, parents and members of the community.
Your children have provided your email addresses, but if you ever want to be dropped from the list just shoot me a note.
If you havenít already, please take a few minutes to check out the SARA web site: SpartanAlumniRowing.org.
We try to do a good job keeping the site updated with the latest photos and race reports. You can also see
from some of the archive sections that your son or daughter is part of a long chain of achievement at Case.
The rowing team celebrated its 20th anniversary this past fall, and we have over 350 alumni all over the world.
I myself graduated CWRU in 1997 in electrical engineering and economics. Iím currently the purchasing manager
for the John Deere tractor factory in Mannheim, Germany. Most importantly (to some), I still try and row
competitively on the masters (old people) circuit. The percentage of our ~350 alumni that are now doctors,
engineers, lawyers, researchers and managers is quite amazing. Also, in any given year we have about 10-20
people still actively rowing or coaching wherever they landed after graduation.
So I want to thank you for letting your child row and welcome you to the ďfamily.Ē If their experience on the
team is like many of ours, your son or daughter will have a great time and will be a much more well rounded
graduate. The skills learned while balancing work, school, rowing, partying, friends, Greek life, etc. are
invaluable and irreplaceable at this age.
Iíve played and participated in many sports and activities in my life. Rowing is different. It requires an
accountability, physical stress (in a good way) and level of teamwork that is not found in anything else Iíve seen.
As such, it seems to attract people that maintain a lifetime connection to the team and sport. For such a young
and relatively small alumni base, weíve raised over $200,000 for the team in the last 8 years. These are
people that will never touch the boat they donated or be coached by the person they pay for. However, the
experience on the team was so profound and impactful they have decided to give back so generously.
We just want your children to have the resources we didnít have.
I am not soliciting donations here. Just supporting your son or daughterís desire to study and row for Case
is enough. Plus, we all know how expense a Case education is. But we have had parents give in the past, and
if you would like to discuss some options just let me know.
For those of you new to the sport weíve tried to create a small parentís section with some background information
on the sport: http://www.spartanalumnirowing.org/SARA_parent.html.
If you have any other questions any time please donít hesitate to ask. I also encourage you to attend a
regatta (including the alumni regatta on April 14) and see what the sportís all about.
Thanks and best regards,
Spartan Alumni Rowing Association