Former Mercer Junior Rower Killed In Ukraine Providing Humanitarian Aid

The thoughts and prayers of the entire PNRA/Mercer community go out to the family of Pete Reed, the American humanitarian aid worker killed in the Ukraine earlier this month.  Mr. Reed grew up in Burlington, NJ and rowed for the Mercer Junior Rowing Program when he was in high school.  He spent time in the Marine Corps before co-founding Global Outreach Doctors which focused its efforts on providing medical aid in war torn areas.  He was killed by a missile on February 2, just outside of Bakhmut, Ukraine.

Humanitarian worker from N.J. killed in Ukraine is remembered for ‘his selflessness’ –

Brooke Wolford Hired as Mercer Varsity Girls Head Coach

PNRA/Mercer announced that Brooke Wolford has accepted the position of Mercer Varsity Girls Head Coach. Brooke has resided in the Princeton area for the past several years while training at the Caspersen Rowing Center with the US National Team and was a member of Team USA at the 2022 World Rowing Coastal Championships in Saundersfoot, Great Britain

Brooke started her athletic career at the age of 5 as a swimmer and water polo player. She continued with both sports into college where she swam and played water polo at Santa Rosa Junior College in California. Brooke did not begin rowing until her 4th year of college at Sonoma State University where she quickly excelled and was later offered a scholarship to row at the University of Central Oklahoma. At UCO, she helped the team earn a first ever team bid to the 2015 NCAA Championships and a 2nd place overall in 2016 at NCAAs.

Brooke graduated from UCO with a degree in Psychology and moved to Philadelphia to row with Vesper Boat Club where she competed for 3 years as a member of their High Performance team. Brooke was invited to the 2019 quad camp held at the Caspersen Rowing Center and began training full time at the national training center. Last year, Brooke was an Assistant Coach with the Mercer Varsity Boys team, and most recently, she competed at the 2022 World Rowing Coastal Endurance Championships in Saundersfoot, Great Britain.

Mercer Rowing Program Director, Hilary Gehman stated: “I am thrilled to welcome Brooke to the Mercer coaching staff. She is a tremendous role model for the Mercer girls and I am excited to see the impact she will have on the team this spring season. I’d also like to recognize the huge contributions of Sam Altier as he led the program all fall as Interim Head Coach. We have a great team of coaches at Mercer!”

Brooke will begin full time with the Varsity Girls in early January. Sam Altier will assist with the coaching transition and remain on the girls coaching staff throughout the winter and spring.

Mercer Indoor Row For The Cure Results

On March 12 and 13, the Mercer Indoor Row for the Cure went virtual.  Utilizing the Concept2 ErgRace platform, the rowing machines were connected virtually for the event.  Athletes could see their progress as well as the race leader and their closest competition on the monitor of their rowing machine.  While last year’s event included a virtual option, this was the first year that the event was fully virtual.

Eugenia Rodriguez and Devon Reid led the Varsity Girls open and lightweight categories.  Julian Thomas and George Drago won the Varsity Boy’s open and lightweight divisions.  In the Novice races Vivian Teeley and Alvin Tien posted the quickest times. In the 500 meter sprints, Stephen Gamma won the open division with Bella Jaffe taking the Girls Coxswain and Matt Califano posting the quickest time in the Men’s Coxswain division.

Full results can be found here.

The Mercer Indoor Row for the Cure is part of the Row for the Cure series of events that raise money to support the Susan G. Komen’s fight to eliminate breast cancer.

The results for this year’s

Mercer Junior Rowers Collect Over 3,000 Pounds of Food for Local Food Bank

In Janury the Mercer Junior Varsity Girls laid down a challenge to the Mercer Varsity Boys and Novice teams to see who could collect the most food to support the Mercer Street Friends Food Bank and the Trenton Area Soup Kitchen. The challenge came in the form of a video which can be seen here: Click here to see the video challenge

The complete team stepped up an took on the challenge with amazing results.  A total of  3,104.1 pounds of food and essential items was collected.  The Varsity Girls contributed over a ton of this total with 2,097.8 pounds.  There were followed by the Varsity Boys with 562.5 pounds and the Novices with 443.8 pounds.

“The food drive was a great way to break out of our rowing community bubble and put our team spirit towards helping others.” said Varsity Girls Captain Charvee Dua.  “When everyone was bringing in the food, we would carry the donations into the office one by one so it still seemed very small scale. It was amazing to see just how much food we were able to get with all the teams combined. Seeing every single donation add up to a sum of a little over 3000 pounds of food really embodied how much teamwork matters for this team, and it feels really good to unify and do something incredible for our community when we can’t currently do that “something incredible” out on the race course.”

Congratulations to everyone who contributed! A special thank you to the girls’ team for their work in organizing and challenging everyone.













About Princeton National Rowing Association
The Princeton National Rowing Association (PNRA), a 501(c)3 organization, operates the Finn M.W. Caspersen Rowing Center located on the shores of Mercer Lake, Mercer County Park in West Windsor, N.J. PNRA is dedicated to providing a venue where athletes of all ages, talents and backgrounds have the opportunity to develop their rowing abilities to their highest potential.  As a United States Olympic Training Site, PNRA is home to the USRowing National Team, as well as scholastic and community rowing programs. PNRA runs the Mercer Junior and Masters Rowing Programs and conducts outreach activities seeking to expand the involvement in rowing in the greater Mercer County, N.J., region.