Coach Chavers joined us for the fall season of 2010.  He earned his B.S. degree in mechanical engineering in 2007 from the U.S. Coast Guard Academy, New London, CT, where he rowed for the men’s heavyweight crew for four years.  He competed in many fall season head races throughout New England including the Head of the Charles, and spring season races including the New England Rowing Championships and the E.C.A.C. National Invitational.  He earned bronze and silver medals at NERC in 2004 and 2005.  (In photo adjacent Coach Chavers rows 7-seat in the Academy’s 1V.)  He also played on the Academy hockey team.  Following college he rowed for two years at the Pocock Rowing Center in Seattle, WA.  He began his rowing career at Bishop Sullivan Catholic High School, Virginia Beach, VA, where he was a four-year rower in fours and quads, and from which he graduated in 2003.

Prior to joining us, Coach Chavers was head novice coach at Boston Latin School.  He coached four novice eights through the 2010 spring season.  They medaled at the Saratoga Invitational and Lowell Invitational.  At the spring State Championships the first novice eight rowed to a bronze medal and the second novice eight captured gold.  He continues to coach and row at Community Rowing, Inc.

Away from the boathouse, Coach Chavers’s career revolves around the water as an active-duty officer in the U.S. Coast Guard.  Currently he is business branch chief of the Naval Engineering Support Unit, Boston.  Previously he served as Engineering Division Officer in the U.S.C.G.C. Mellon (WHEC 717), a high-endurance cutter homeported in Seattle, WA, conducting patrols and fishing enforcement in the Gulf of Alaska, Bering Sea, and Eastern Pacific down to South America.  While aboard the Mellon, he was awarded two Meritorious Team Commendations for performance during casualties, a Meritorious Unit Commendation, and a Special Operations Ribbon for Narcotics Interdiction.  He holds a Maritime Law Enforcement Certificate from the Federal Law Enforcement Training Center, Charleston, SC, and an Advanced Damage Control Certificate from the U.S. Naval Surface Warfare School in Norfolk, VA.  He is pursuing an M.B.A. degree in finance at Northeastern University.

What is your favorite rowing memory?

My favorite rowing memory is definitely medaling at New Englands my sophomore year in college.  It was the first year my coach had a crew with the work ethic, commitment and chemistry to really compete and it was the most validating and rewarding season ever.  The two-a-day practices for the last six weeks of practice, the mandatory 120 minutes of erging outside of practice, and the pain of winter training all paid dividends when we were standing on the medals dock after holding off Williams College and the University of Massachusetts for a Bronze Medal.

How did you get started in crew?

I started rowing in high school after my freshman math teacher told me to come out for the team.  I had gotten into trouble for acting up in his class and he gave me the option of learning to row or being written up.  I showed up for practice that first day (on the day of the team’s second 2k test of the season) and never looked back.

What has rowing done for you?

Rowing has developed in me the ability to give every ounce of myself to my endeavors.  No matter the situation or circumstances, I will always put my best effort and best self forward.  The drive, discipline and commitment now part of my personality are direct results of my rowing experience.

Why do you coach?

Watching young people develop the toughness, dedication, perseverance and discipline this sport requires is a rewarding experience.  Especially with novices, to watch the progression from new participants to disciplined, well-trained athletes is unlike anything else.  Coaching also provides one of the best forums for me to share my competitive spirit and enthusiasm.  I believe one of the most valuable lessons anyone can learn is, in any situation in life, to do everything as if it were on purpose and to the best of your ability.  Rowing is just the best way to teach that.

Favorite written quote?

“Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate.  Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure.  It is our light, not our darkness, that most frightens us.  We ask ourselves, Who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous, talented, fabulous?  Actually, who are you not to be?  You are a child of God.  Your playing small does not serve the world.  There is nothing enlightened about shrinking so that other people won’t feel insecure around you.  We are all meant to shine, as children do.  We were born to make manifest the glory of God that is within us.  It’s not just in some of us; it’s in everyone.  And as we let our own light shine, we unconsciously give other people permission to do the same.  As we are liberated from our own fear, our presence automatically liberates others.”—Marianne Williamson

Favorite spoken quote?

“One would sometimes think, from the speech of young men, that things had changed recently, and that indifference was now the virtue to be cultivated.  I have never heard any one profess indifference to a boat race.  Why should you row in a boat race?  Why endure long months of pain in preparation for a fierce half hour that will leave you all but dead?  Does anyone ask the question?  Is there any one who would not go through all its costs, and more, for the moment when anguish breaks into triumph, or even for the glory of having nobly lost?  Is life less than a boat race?  If a man will give all the blood in his body to win the one, will he not spend all the might of his soul to prevail in the other?”—Oliver Wendell Holmes