Athletic Lives of Distinction - M - Z
S - Z

Silk, Robert '84 - Rowing

Robert has always been a fierce competitor—his records speak to that. But he also recognizes the powerful role that both strong teamwork and coaching play in building champions. As a swimmer, he won Ridley’s first OFSSA medal. As a rower, he won the Stotesbury Cup and two CSSRA championships.

Robert was offered a full athletic scholarship to Temple University in Philadelphia, where he found himself in a boat with a number of rowers he had beat out in the Stotesbury Cup race. “They hated me at first,” he recalls. “But it taught me the importance of competition. Some of those guys who hated me my first few days at Temple are now some of my best friends.” His Temple crew pulled together to win several gold medals and championships, including the memorable Augusta Invitational in Georgia, where they beat Oxford University in the final.

Looking back to his Ridley days, Robert's list of positive influences is extensive, starting with Rick Coy, his Lower School football coach. He also notes Paul Lewis, Rick Rasmussen, Neil Campbell—who pushed him beyond what he knew he could do, and assistant football coach Dennis Hull—who always reminded players in the huddle to just go out and have fun. “That’s something,” he cautions, “that I think athletes forget sometimes.” 
 
“None of us could do this alone; I know that my teammates have carried me a lot of times.”
 
 
P.O. Box 3013, 2 Ridley Road St. Catharines, Ontario L2R 7C3 Canada 905 684 1889
With more than 700 students from 60 countries, the largest boarding programme in Ontario and the third largest in Canada, Ridley College is a truly international, co-educational, day and boarding school of the world that prepares students for the world. It has provided enriching learning and life-shaping experiences focused on the arts, academics, and athletics since 1889. Ridley’s Lower School offers JK-Grade 8, its Upper School consists of Grade 9-PG, and Ridley graduates attend some of the top universities and colleges around the world. Ridley is the only   co-ed independent boarding school in Canada and one of only three in North America authorized to offer the International Baccalaureate (IB) continuum programme.