Bob Humphrey: Volunteer Extraordinaire!


Bob even found a boat to row in NYC.  Photo courtesy of Bob Humphrey.

This week Canada is celebrating National Volunteer Week (NVW). 

Now in its 74th year, NVW began in 1943 to bring attention to the vital contribution women were making to the war effort on the home front.


Today, numerous groups and organizations rely upon volunteers in order to function at full capacity.  Rowing falls into this category.  The rowing clubs across the country would be in dire straights without the contribution of the people who donate countless hours of their time to the sport that they love.

One of these volunteers is Bob Humphrey, a member of the Sudbury Rowing Club.

A latecomer to rowing, Bob picked up his first oar in his forties. He was attracted to the sport because of the work ethic required to be successful, in addition to the social component integral in a team environment.

“We also got to row on a beautiful lake which was walking distance from my home,” Bob added, as he explained the reasons for starting to row in the first place.

A humble man, Bob has been involved with rowing for more than 20 years.  His contributions to the Sudbury Rowing Club are numerous.  From inserting and removing the docks, gas runs, trailer hauling, to being the Sudbury club’s representative on the Northern Water Sports Board, Bob is a Jack-of-all-trades who loves to contribute.

This is also the reason Bob was the recipient of the prestigious Rowing Canada Aviron (RCA) Volunteer of the Year award, which was presented to him at the 34th RCA Annual Awards Gala which was held last January.

“It was an unexpected and great honour to be chosen,” explained Bob. “There were a lot of people who should have received this instead of me.”

And what, in his opinion, is his biggest contribution to the Sudbury rowing club?

“I taught them that even a non-morning person can be a part of a morning sport!’ he adds jokingly.

Bob’s volunteering doesn’t end with rowing.

Out of the Cold, a weekly dinner for the disadvantaged, St. Andrew’s Place, a-not-for-profit senior citizen’s housing complex, and the Sudbury Dragon Boat festival are but a few of the many volunteering gigs which keeps Bob busy.

Thus, as we take the time to recognize all those who volunteer, a special thank you goes out to Bob Humphrey.  The time Bob donates to helping others is appreciated not merely this week, NVW, but every week throughout the year.

Canada, the city of Sudbury, and the sport of rowing, are better places and organizations because of Mr. Bob Humphrey.


Douglas Vandor – Rowing Canada Aviron – 250.686.2282