Jafra Thomas Carries a boat

Jafra Thomas carries a boat during practice for the Crew Team. Thomas, a senior at Pacific, was asked to lead a series of workshops at the US Rowing convention in Connecticut this month.

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Pacific News

CREW Member to Lead Workshops at US Rowing Convention

Dec 2, 2011

This Saturday, Jafra Thomas will serve as the opening speaker for a special presentation at the US Rowing annual convention in Hartford, Connecticut.

Thomas, a senior at University of the Pacific majoring in Sports Management, was asked by America Rows and Inclusion Director Richard Butler of US Rowing to lead off a full day of programming designed to showcase successful community outreach models to increase inclusivity and diversity in the sport of Rowing.

What makes Thomas the perfect opening speaker is the nationally recognized community outreach work he has lead as Inclusion Coordinator for Deep Water Rowing Association, Pacific Rowing's community programming for local high school age students and adults. "Pacific Rowing's Inclusion Coordinator position is one of the few staffed by a University rowing program anywhere in the country" says Pacific's Director of Rowing Eric Weir. "Pacific has a renewed and robust sense of purpose surrounding community engagement since the launching of a series of "beyond our gates" initiatives lead by President Eibeck; to have our national governing body recognize his extraordinarily work to support this mission is outstanding recognition not only for Jafra,  but for Pacific and the City of Stockton as well."

Thomas is uniquely qualified to address inclusion outreach. Thomas grew up in Stockton and attended the Weber Institute before being recruited to attend Pacific in 2007 and row for Pacific Crew, University of the Pacific's collegiate rowing program. Now as a graduating senior, Thomas is completing his fourth season of successful competitive rowing and his third as a varsity team leader for Pacific Crew.

More important than any of his many achievements as a student athlete however are his significant contributions to the America Rows initiatives and his tireless efforts to bring the sport of rowing to all members of the Stockton community. "Jafra is a great example of the kind of mindful, empowered student leader we develop here at Pacific" Weir said.

This past summer, Thomas was also honored by being selected to attend the Flame program put on by the USOC  held at the Olympic training Center in Colorado Springs. Thomas was selected from a large pool of applicants to receive an all expenses paid trip to join fellow minority leaders in a workshop on best practices in mentoring and developing strong positive relationships with community youth.

For more information about participation in Pacific Rowing's community outreach programming or to become a corporate partner please contact Director of Rowing Eric Weir at eweir@pacific.edu or call 209-946-CREW. Jafra is a great example of the kind of mindful, empowered student leader we develop here at Pacific who can be a positive change agent for their local community".

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