Countdown till The KNECHT Cup Regatta:


William Joseph “Bill” Knecht (March 10, 1930 – December 17, 1992) was an American competition rower. He took up the sport at La Salle High School , and later went to Villanova University, graduating in 1951. In 1946 he joined the Vesper Boat Club and won multiple national titles with them. Internationally he earned gold medals in the eights at the 1955 Pan American Games and 1964 Olympics, and in double sculls at the 1959 and 1963 Pan American Games.[3] He also took part in the double sculls event at the 1960 Olympics, paired with John B. Kelly Jr. 

Bill’s total involvement in rowing never ceased. Bill became a member of the U.S. Olympic Rowing Team Committee and a judge at the 1992 Summer Olympics. He’s a member of the American Rowing Hall of Fame and a founder of the Cooper River (NJ) Rowing Association. He was President of the National Association of Amateur Oarsmen, he was the American delegate to FISA, the world rowing governing body, he was one of the founders of the National Rowing Foundation, and the creator of the rowing course on the Cooper River, in Camden County NJ. 

The Ana Tamas Knecht Trophy honors Ana Tamas Knecht, an avid rower and wife of Bill Knecht, Olympic rower (1964). Ana came from Romania in 1968, longing to lavish her training talents as a professional rowing coach in the United States. Her credentials to do so were staggering: 14 world championships in women’s rowing and a Romanian government license to coach the sport. And that’s not all. She was the first Romanian woman ever elected “An Honored Master of Sport”, which is about the best thing that can happen to an athlete in Eastern Europe. She was reputed to be one of the toughest rowing coaches on the Schuylkill at a time when heads of schools and athletic directors could not see a woman in charge of young men involved in one of the most demanding of endurance sports.

Donated by the Smith Family whose daughter was former Villanova rower and Captain. Ann was a strong supporter of Villanova rowing. Ann unfortunately​succumbed to ovarian cancer in July 2002. Her unwavering commitment to help others lives on through the Ann Harris Smith Foundation dedicated to raising Ovarian Cancer Awareness.

Former rower and Captain at Villanova in the early 90s. Danielle Kousoulis was grew up in Haddon Township, NJ. She was a member of St. Thomas Greek Orthodox Church in Cherry Hill. The community center is named in honor of Danielle. A photograph of Danielle greets visitors and stands as a reminder at the entrance with an American flag. After graduating from Villanova University, Danielle accepted a position at Cantor-Fitzgerald as a bond broker. Always striving to improve herself, she pursued an MBA at NYU’s prestigious Stern School of Business with the help of Cantor’s tuition assistance program. She earned her MBA in May 2000. In addition, she fulfilled another dream by running and completing the New York City Marathon in 1999. She eventually achieved the position of Vice-President at Cantor-Fitzgerald. Danielle tragically lost her life in 9/11 and this award was donated by her graduating class at Villanova.