Oxford Brookes congratulates Chancellor Dame Katherine Grainger on winning rowing’s most prestigious award

Thursday, 29 June 2017

Katherine Grainger 800x450

Oxford Brookes’ Chancellor Dame Katherine Grainger has been awarded the 2017 Thomas Keller Medal for an Outstanding Career in Rowing.

Katherine is Great Britain’s most decorated female Olympic rowing with five Olympic medals and the first British woman to win at five successive games. The medals include gold at the London 2012 Olympic Games and silver at the Rio 2016 games.

The Thomas Keller Medal is the highest distinction in rowing, recognising an exceptional international rowing career as well as exemplary sportsmanship.

On winning the award, Katherine said: “I’m still a little stuck for words. I think it’s because it feels like a very iconic medal to win and from the very first time I started my career, 20 years ago to now, I’ve seen some of the true global ambassadors, heroes and role models of our sport win that award. It is the ultimate prize in our sport. It’s a reflection of a whole career and I never expect to get it.”

Katherine started rowing while at university in Scotland and throughout her 20-year career has demonstrated her adaptability in a range of boats including the quadruple sculls, the pair, double and single sculls. 

Professor Alistair Fitt, Vice-Chancellor of Oxford Brookes University said: “We are so proud of our Chancellor and this latest achievement. The Thomas Keller Medal recognises Katherine’s outstanding contribution to rowing and is thoroughly deserved following an illustrious career. 

“I have no doubt that she will continue to excel in her new role as Chair of UK Sport and in all she does. Our students and staff benefit from having such an inspirational figure as their Chancellor and I wish to personally congratulate Katherine on behalf of the University.”

It was announced in April that Dame Katherine Grainger will take on the role of Chair of UK Sport from 1 July 2017 for a term of four years. 

The Thomas Keller Medal presentation will take place on Saturday 8 July during the World Rowing Cup in Lucerne, Switzerland. Katherine will receive the medal from Dominik Keller, son of the FISA’s former President, the late Thomas Keller.