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Inspiring Canadians - In Sport and Life

Honoured Member

AL MORROW

Inducted in 2006

Member Details

Date of Birth: December 28, 1949
Place of Birth: Hamilton, Ontario
Sport: Rowing
Member Category: Builder

Career Highlights

1976

Represented Canada at Summer Olympics

1980

Trainer for national women's rowing team

1992

Guided Canada's women to a record four medals at Barcelona Olympics

1996

Guided rowers to three Olympic medals in Atlanta

2000

Guided rowers to one Olympic medal at Sydney

Honoured Member AL MORROW
Inspire

Story

Al Morrow has spent most of his life in rowing. As an athlete, his involvement culminated in 1976 when he was a member of the national rowing team that represented Canada at the Olympics in Montreal. The previous year he had won a bronze medal with the coxless four at the Pan-Am Games in Mexico City. He had also participated in three World Championships-1970, 1974, and 1975. Morrow soon after the ’76 Olympics to become head coach of the men’s rowing team at UBC. Just a year later he was an assistant coach with the national team at the world championships, and it has been in coaching that he has made his most significant contributions. Morrow became head coach of the University of Victoria’s rowing team in 1978. Over the course of the next decade, he helped the team win two championships. It was during this time that he became national head coach as well, starting with the 1980 Olympic team. It was the first of six Olympics as a coach, and he also went on to coach Canadian rowers at some 17 world championships. Although he moved to the University of Western Ontario in 1988 to focus on women’s rowing, Morrow continued his work on the national level where he coached women’s rowing for some 16 years (1988-2004). It was in 1992, at the Olympics in Barcelona, that the team reached its zenith. The duo of Marnie McBean and Kathleen Heddle won three gold medals, a feat that put the rowers and their coach in the world spotlight. His rowers also won three medals at the 1996 Olympics and one more in 2000. Two years later, Morrow became coach of the National Team Program and in 1999 the International Rowing Federation named him coach of the year. In all, his athletes have won a combined 25 World Championship and Olympic medals since 1991. In addition to coaching at premier international events, Morrow is also involved with the High Performance Centre in London, Ontario, where the women’s teams train during the summer.


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