The CHARGERS Rowing Club was formed as a community not for profit organization in 1972 by former Syracuse University Men’s Rowing coach and Onondaga County Legislator Bill Sanford. Coach Sanford’s vision was to bring the Olympic and lifetime sport of rowing to the people of the greater Syracuse community, utilizing existing resources and expertise.

Since its inception, the CHARGERS have focused on contributing to the Central New York community through cooperation and synergy with other CNY institutions including: Syracuse University, Onondaga County and the County parks system, City of Syracuse Area High Schools. With its dedicated volunteers and history of responsible fiscal management, the CHARGERS have provided valuable resources to the Central New York community-without the financial support of governmental entities or other third parties.

Rowing on ONONDAGA Channel

The CHARGERS continue a long and proud CNY tradition of the sport of rowing on Onondaga Lake, which began in 1879. Today the CHARGERS, working in partnership with Onondaga County Parks administration, has developed plans for a new boathouse, to be located near its existing boathouse in Onondaga Lake Park. The proposed facility reflects the needs of the Club, the community and the County’s key water-access park. Its construction will provide benefits to the CHARGERS, as well as the community it has served well for 40 years.

Partnership with Local Schools

The CHARGERS are proud of the relationship it has developed with area high schools. Initially, Liverpool High School was the sole high school rowing program affiliated with the CHARGERS.

The CHARGERS relationship with Liverpool continues today, and has expanded to include:
 Syracuse City Schools (1995) Baldwinsville Schools (2000) Fayetteville-Manlius Schools (2004) Lemoyne College (2013)

Rowing on ONONDAGA Inlet

From 1995 to 2000, the CHARGERS hosted the US Rowing Club National Championships. These four-day events brought national attention-as well as travelers and their dollars to the Syracuse community. The ’97 event alone drew approximately 10,000 spectators to the area. US Rowing, the governing body of rowing in this country, has asked the CHARGERS to host future regional or national regattas.

The CHARGERS have also hosted the US Rowing Masters Nationals, another four-day event with over 1200 participants.

In the spring of each year, the Club hosts the Syracuse CHARGERS Invitational Regatta, which consistently draws over 1000 New York State high school athletes and their families.

We also host the Section III regional’s and the Susan G. Komen Row for the Cure (which has raised over $25,000 over the last three years).



Mission Statement

To develop a dynamic membership and promote a vibrant rowing community while encouraging an appreciation of and respect for the natural resources that surround us. Vision: A club which fosters the development of our youth, contributes to the economic well-being of our community, and promotes healthy physical/social activities for all age groups within the Greater Syracuse area.

Oars down off the racks and ready for a row

Oars down off the racks and ready for a row


 Commitment – Teamwork – Community – Rowing – Excellence – Respect


Larry Gallagher
Interim President - 2018
Jennifer Scalione
Treasurer - 2017
Lyn Hathaway
Secretary - 2017
Sam Haines
Board Member - At Large - 2018
Georgia Dancks
Board Member - At Large - 2018
Robert O’Leary
Board Member - At Large - 2018
Mike D’Eredita
Board Member - At Large - 2017
Donald Budmen
Board Member - At Large - 2017
Steve VanAuken
Baldwinsville Rep - appointed 3/2016
Kate Kohler
Board Member - At Large - 2017
Jim Hyde
Liverpool Rep - appointed 3/2016
Dave Smith
FM Rep - appointed 9/2016

Unless otherwise stated, the years set forth above indicate the year the Board Member’s term ends.

CHARGERS 2016 Committees and Members

  • Programs Committee
  • Don Budmen – Chair
  • Lyn Hathaway
  • Steve VanAuken
  • Larry Gallagher
  • Finance Committee
  • Jon Fehlman – Chair
  • Sam Haines
  • Jennifer Scalione
  • Fundraising Committee
  • Joe Bufano – Chair
  • Liz Headd
  • Linda Dwyer
  • Marketing Committee
  • Lisa Craig – Chair
  • Jennifer Scalione
  • Kristen Fehlman
  • Linda Dwyer
  • Coaching Liaison Committee
  • Larry Laszlo – Chair
  • Dave Cusano
  • Pat Wilson
  • Regatta Committee
  • Dave Cusano – Chair
  • Larry Laszlo
  • Chris Ludden
  • Participant Recognition Committee
  • Don Budmen – Chair
  • Hall of Fame Committee
  • Lyn Hathaway – Chair
  • Larry Laszlo
  • Georgia Dancks
  • Strategic Planning Committee
  • Joe Bufano – Chair
  • Larry Gallagher
  • Larry Laszlo
  • Kristen Bufano
  • Lyn Hathaway
  • Dave Cusano
  • Boathouse Construction Committee
  • Larry Gallagher – Chair
  • Larry Laszlo
  • Joe Bufano
  • Jim King
  • Matt Foster