Harvard Announces Men's Lightweight Crew Coaching Endowment

Charley Butt's Harvard lightweight varsity has not lost a dual race since 2009.
Charley Butt's Harvard lightweight varsity has not lost a dual race since 2009.

CAMBRIDGE, Mass – The Nichols Family Director of Athletics, Bob Scalise, and Harvard University are excited to announce the 13th endowed head coach position: The Friends of Harvard Lightweight Rowing Coach for Men’s Lightweight Crew.

A group of dedicated and loyal lightweight rowing alumni jointly endowed the head coach position to ensure that the success that has defined Harvard lightweight rowing’s storied past continues in the future. This is the second Harvard coaching position endowed in the last two months and the 13th overall.

Lightweight crew at Harvard began in 1921 and the program has continued its prominence on the national and international stage right into the 21st century. The Harvard lightweight varsity eight has won its last 24 dual races, finished second nationally last season and is currently ranked No. 1 in the country.

“I am extremely thankful to the group of lightweight rowers who stepped up to make this possible,” Bob Scalise said. “Rowing has a long, proud tradition at Harvard and will continue to have a place in Harvard Athletics for generations to come.”

Harvard lightweight crews have won 25 Eastern Sprints titles, more than any other program, and the varsity eight has captured seven national championships since 1991 — the most of any school in the nation.

Harvard’s 1938 crew was among the first lightweight entries to compete at the prestigious Henley Royal Regatta. Harvard has won Henley’s prized Thames Challenge Cup on five occasions and advanced deep into the competition many other times.

For the last 27 years, Charley Butt has guided Harvard's lightweight program to an impressive list of successes, and his teams have consistently been among the nation's best. Heading into the 2012 championship season, Harvard has captured 13 Eastern Sprints crowns and seven national championships, including the 2003 IRA national championship. In six of the last nine years, Butt's lightweight varsity has captured the Goldthwait Cup, emblematic of supremacy among crews from Harvard, Yale and Princeton. Additionally, his varsity and junior varsity crews captured gold medals at the Eastern Sprints. The Crimson won the Jope Cup as overall lightweight team champion at the same regatta four times in the last eight years.

“It’s a way for several generations of Harvard oarsmen to show how much their own experiences as a lightweight rower at Harvard meant to them,” Butt said. “This gift ensures that many future generations of oarsmen will enjoy the same opportunity. I appreciate that oarsmen from the 1950s, 60s, 70s and 80s came together to make this possible.”

Current Harvard Athletics Endowments
Listed alphabetically by sport

The Nichols Family Director of Harvard Athletics
The Joseph J. O'Donnell '67 MBA '71 Head Coach for Harvard Baseball
The Thomes Bolles Endowment for Men's Heavyweight Crew
The Friends of Harvard Lightweight Rowing Coach for Men’s Lightweight Crew
The Thomas Stephenson '64 MBA '66 Family Head Coach for Harvard Football
The Robert D. Ziff '88 Head Coach for Harvard Men's Ice Hockey
The Landry Family Head Coach for Harvard Women's Ice Hockey
The Frisbie Family Head Coach for Harvard Men's Lacrosse
The Virginia B. and James O. Welch, Jr. '52 Head Coach for Harvard Men's Soccer
The Gregory Lee '87 and Russell Ball '88 Endowed Coach for Squash at Harvard University
The Ulen-Brooks Endowed Coach for Harvard Men's Swimming and Diving
The Costin Family Endowed Coach for Harvard Women's Swimming and Diving
The Scott Mead '77 Family Head Coach for Harvard Men's Tennis
The David G. Bunning '88 Head Coach for Harvard Wrestling