JENN JUNK, EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR & COACH
Jenn rowed at Michigan State University and began coaching for Ignatius Chicago Crew (ICC) in 2006. Jenn is US Rowing Level II certified coach and RYT200 yoga instructor. In recognition of her achievements as the Founder and Coach of ROW®, Jenn was honored in November of 2009 as the Athena Foundation Chicago Young Professional Award recipient, and in 2010 she received Today’s Chicago Woman’s INSPIRED Award. In 2011 US Rowing recognized Jenn as the Masters Coach of the Year and in 2014 she was awarded the Spartan Innovator Award by the Michigan State Chicago Alumni Association. Most recently, Jenn was recognized in 2016 by Lakeview High School with the Outstanding Young Alumni Award.
In the summer of 2012, Jenn rowed the 1,500 mile perimeter of Lake Michigan raising over $150,000 to buy boats and equipment for the team.
Jenn joined the the ROW®staff as Executive Director in 2012 and brings her nonprofit background and coaching experience to manage the coaches, budget, assess programs and run the organization with the guidance of the Board Chair and Board of Directors. Jenn sits on the Advisory Board for Girls in the Game and the Board of Directors for South Side Community Rowing. Jenn likes starboard side, handstands, running marathons, eating hot wings (not at the same time) and kicking cancer’s butt–one rower at a time.
DEVLIN MURDOCK, PROGRAMS MANAGER & COACH
Devlin rowed in high school for the Saugatuck Rowing Club in Westport, CT and continued rowing in college at St. Joseph's University in Philadelphia, PA. He enjoyed much success at both levels, including national championships as both a single sculler (high school) and as an oarsman (college). Devlin joined the coaching staff in 2014 after having spent almost 10 years away from the sport and hasn't looked back since.
Devlin shares his passion for the sport of rowing with the ladies of ROW® as both a US Rowing Level II certified Masters coach as well as ROW's Programs Manager. Devlin works daily to ensure ROW® programming runs smoothly so that our coaches and athletes can focus on ROW's mission to fight back against cancer with exercise. Along with managing the coaching staff, and maintinaing our equipment, Devlin also tracks program data such as participant surveys and weekly attendance to measure our impact.
KATHLEEN BEHNER, OPERATIONS & OUTREACH COORDINATOR
Kathleen jumped at the opportunity to join the ROW team in 2009 as a way to learn a new sport and to continue to be active in her cancer recovery. Admittedly, after many years on the team, she humbly realizes she is still attempting to perfect her rowing-stroke and that she will never be invited to be on the national rowing team.
Kathleen is very excited to bring her nonprofit accounting and operations expertise to the ROW organization which, for her, has been the silver lining of a very difficult diagnosis with ongoing side effects. She looks forward to sharing the important mission of ROW with more survivors and encouraging them to be active while gaining support in their recovery process.
When not on a rowing machine or on the river with her teammates, Kathleen enjoys cycling around Chicago with her husband and friends or attending theater productions. Keeping true to her motto "just keep moving", she takes every opportunity she can to explore European countries at a very slow pace - on a bicycle with her husband - taking in the country's sights, smells and savoring the local food and wine. "Life is short...just keep moving!"
SHEENA SMITH, NOVICE COACH
Sheena learned to row as a freshman at the University of Washington in Seattle in 2001, and has rowed with Green Lake Crew. She moved to Chicago and began coaching ROW® in June 2009. Sheena strives to expose the athlete in each of her rowers, and especially loves getting novices out on the water for the first time. She recently graduated with a MA in English Literature from DePaul University and currently works as an editor and marketing strategist. Sheena is a UCanROW2/Concept2 certified rowing instructor and a valuable part of our coaching staff - welcoming “newbies” and helping out with various campaigns and events.
In her free time she misses skiing on the west coast, collects soul 45s from the 60’s, and travels as much as possible.
BARBARA FRANCO, MASTERS COACH
Barb began rowing her Junior year in High school after a long career as a competitive swimmer. She rowed for two years in Madison for Camp Randall Rowing Club (CRRC) before continuing on to row all four years at Tufts University in Medford, MA. She has experienced racing in every type of rowing boat except a pair. She began coaching juniors during the summer months for CRRC while in college and began coaching breast cancer survivor teams in Madison in 2011 when she encouraged her mother (a breast cancer survivor) to join the We Can Row team. Barb is also a UCanRow2/Concept2 certified rowing instructor. She recently returned to the U.S. after two years in the Peace Corps in Burkina Faso where she would frequently have dreams about rowing and is very excited to get back on the water
MONICA BERNARDO, NOVICE COACH
Monica is highly competitive, especially when it comes to rowing. She began rowing lightweight as a freshman in high school at St. Ignatius College Prep. After suffering from a shoulder injury her junior year, Monica found her true calling as a coxswain! Monica continued on to cox for The Catholic University of America’s club team, and Avalon Rowing Club. She has been an active volunteer with Recovery on Water since 2009, and served as an intern the summer of 2014.
The summer of 2015 Monica rode 1,000 miles around Lake Michigan with Bike4ROW and ran the 2016 Bank of America Chicago Marathon to raise funds and awareness for the women of Recovery on Water. She works as a marketing copywriter & brand manager and runs social media for the team.
In her free time, Monica enjoys cycling, headstands, going to Cubs games, planning events, spending time with her friends, family, and dog ChaCha. She is excited to coach and continue coxing for ROW®!
JOHN ALBRECHT, NOVICE COACH
John rowed with the Marquette University Rowing Club from January 2010 to May 2012. He had a truly novice start, but became part of a tight-knit varsity squad the following year. Rowing remained a core part of his college life until graduating with BS in Accounting and Theatre Arts in May 2012. During his summers in Milwaukee, he helped orchestrate collegiate rowing for Marquette and MSOE through the Milwaukee Rowing Club. He believes passionately in the discipline and camaraderie rowing can provide to those who dedicate themselves to the sport. That and sunrises. John was introduced to ROW® in 2011 through a Row-a-thon fundraiser collaboration at Marquette. He began volunteering with ROW at the 2013 St. Pat’s Sprint for Recovery and is excited to continue to be a part of ROW’s mission as an assistant coach to the novice squad. John is a is US Rowing Level II certified coach as well as a UCanRow2/Concept2 certified rowing instructor.
LILY PAPALEO, head NOVICE COACH
Lily started tried rowing on a whim her freshmen year of high school and never looked back, despite catching a crab while sitting easy on her first day. She rowed for four years with LPJ (now Chicago Rowing Foundation) where she made her way from the scrappy 4th Varsity 8 her sophomore year to stroking the V8 her senior year. She was also voted senior captain, and awarded Most Improved and Most Valuable Oarswoman before graduating in 2012.
In college, Lily rowed all four years at Temple University in Philadelphia. She found a new love for the sport by being entrenched in such a historic rowing culture and the intensely competitive D1 atmosphere. At Temple, Lily was again awarded Most Improved by jumping from stroking the V4 to stroking the V8 her junior year. Her senior year, she was once again voted captain, and finished the 2016 season in the V8 with a 3rd place at the American Athletic Conference Championships, the highest finish in Temple Rowing history. She was also honored as a second team All-American.
Lily first became involved with ROW as an intern in 2014 when she helped organize the inaugural Bike4ROW trip around Lake Michigan and participated as navigator. She currently works with ROW novices and loves their enthusiasm and commitment to such a difficult sport, and hopes to be able to help them to achieve and surpass their goals. In her free time, she enjoys sleeping, eating hot dogs, and visiting cemeteries.
HEMINGWAY BENTON, MASTERS COACH
Hemingway started her rowing career at New Trier High school in Winnetka, IL. After falling in love with the sport she competed in the 2010 Junior World Championships in the pair. After high school, Hemingway attended the University of Virginia. Rowing in the Varsity 8 all four years, her boat won the 2012 NCAA championship in the V8 and team title, 4 ACC gold medals, and Hemingway became an All American in her senior year.
Now living back in Chicago and working in sales at Salesforce.com, Hemingway turned to ROW® to revisit her rowing career and help other women become passionate about rowing as well as passionate about their health after cancer treatment.
LINDSEY HOCHMAN, MASTERS COACH
Lindsey started rowing in high school in Virginia Beach, VA. She went on to row at Colgate University and then moved to Seattle, WA to train for the national team. Lindsey spent three years on the United States National Rowing Team, during which time she earned two bronze medals and one fourth-place finish in the lightweight quad. After finishing her own rowing career, she spent a number of years as a rowing coach, developing education and training programs, handling logistics, advising and mentoring athletes. Most recently, Lindsey spent two years coaching the DIII collegiate novice women at Hobart and William Smith College and then two years coaching DI at the University of San Diego.
After moving to Chicago in the summer of 2016 and working as a corporate recruiter/headhunter, Lindsey is excited to be a part of the amazing ROW® community. She is passionate about coaching and loves developing and coaching all types of athletes.
KYM REYNOLDS, survivor & INDOOR ROWING COACH
Kym Reynolds, a breast cancer survivor since 2012 has been on the ROW team since 2013. Kym's life motto is, "I learn to live my life by the day and not to sweat the small stuff." Kym shares, "My teammates and the staff have become very important to me and have become a part of my family." Kym became interested in coaching indoor rowing to give back to the community. "The ROW team has been my compass and this is my way of giving back." Kym recently became a UCanRow2/Concept2 certified indoor rowing instructor and coaches weekly with our community indoor rowing class.
PAIGE CARNEY, survivor & YOGA INSTRUCTOR
2014 was a very good year for Paige! Not only did she join ROW that year, she also began yoga teaching training at Tejas Yoga in Chicago. Paige retired from her full time job in May of 2015 and followed her dream of becoming a certified yoga teacher. Knowing she wanted to give back to her community, Paige began chair yoga in the oncology waiting room at UIC. She hopes she can help others who are in cancer treatment.
CORY ESPOSITO, ADMINISTRATIVE ASSISTANT
Cory was eager for new challenges upon arriving at DePaul University his freshmen year. He went to open tryouts for the DePaul University Crew team and became a true novice rower among a rapidly growing three-year old program. This past season Cory held down three seat at the ACRA Regatta in DePaul’s first, second varsity boat.
Cory is a junior at DePaul University on a path to obtain a five-year Masters in accounting with a minor in American Sign Language. He dreams of one day using his knowledge of accountancy to start a non-profit and help many different impoverished communities.
When Cory is not flipping copies or completing projects in a timely manner he enjoys reading in a hammock near the lake and crushing erg pieces.