Committee Members

At Newcastle Outrigger Canoe Club, we have a a passionate team of committee members who not only love to get out on the water, but are passionate enough to put some of the spare time into running the outrigger club.


Greg Coffin

I started paddling canoes in 2009 with Na Leo ‘O Ke Kai in Phoenix, Arizona.  I was drawn to paddling after moving back to AZ and bugging over not being able to surf everyday.  I stumbled across Na Leo when checking to see if SUPs were allowed on Tempe Town Lake.  It’s a club full of Hawaiians, that’s kind of surfy, right?  Fast forward 8 years and I’ve competed regularly in races in in California, Hawaii, Australia, and Arizona; with appearances in New York and the Cook Islands.  I barely surf anymore as paddling has firmly taken root!  I’ve been involved in Club leadership as a member of the Board of Directors at Na Leo ‘O Ke Kai and Vice President and President at Newcastle Outrigger Canoe Club.  I count the 2012 Queen Lili’uokalani Canoe Race, 2016 Moloka’i Hoe, and 2017 Sydney Harbour Challenge as my biggest achievements in paddling to date.  For the future, I’m looking at Maui Nui… be continued.

Vice President

Rachel Harris

As a child, my holidays were canoeing at Nan and Pa’s on St Georges Basin. I have always loved the freedom of being out in the water and paddling along has always cleared my mind. I was on holidays at Phillip Island in 2012, doing a canoeing tour into a cave and i just loved it, i wanted to do this every week!
I found Newcastle Outriggers in Jan 2013, I started paddling and I absolutely loved it. 4 years on, i have volunteered myself in the committee as Secretary and Vice President. I manage website & social media pages for the club including Facebook and Instagram.  I am currently learning to become a coach.


Helen Smart

Growing up in the bush, water sports were not part of my childhood, but have certainly been a constant in my adult life.  I played canoe polo and kayaked in Katherine, dodging crocs and negotiating rapids in K2s and K4s.  I started outrigging whilst living in Cairns and picked it up again in Newcastle.  I love the global family of paddling – we regularly have visitors joining us for a paddle from interstate and overseas.  This was my first race season and we’ve been busy, participating in club regattas in Sydney, Ulladulla and Pt Macquarie. Hosting one of the largest regattas on the coast in January was certainly a buzz! My absolute favourite events this year were the Pan Pacs on the Gold Coast and the Sydney Harbour Challenge.


Grant Schultz

My love of the ocean started around 5 years of age running from side to side on dads sailing dinghy, progressing to my own sailing boat at 11, sailing numerous classes of boats over the years, eventually becoming a qualified Australian Yachting Federation instructor. A highlight for me during this time was winning the 1986 World FF15 Championships in Hong Kong. During the 80’s I also managed to spend many hours sailboarding; competing in events and wave jumping at local beaches.

Sailing finally petered out, but after a few years I got back on the water in 2006 after discovering Dragon Boats. I was then introduced to outrigging in 2008, becoming one of the first members of the club in 2009. I have competed at Hamilton Island, Mooloolaba, Townsville, and many other events and look forward to competing overseas in the future. I love my time on the water, it’s my sanity check and it has been a great source of friends over the years.

Doug Checinski

Doug Checinski


Stephen Dawes

Helped get NOCC started with the help from Port Stephens Outrigger Canoe Club in Aug 2009.
30 years racing various catamarans & other peoples yachts; ex squash/tennis/league/car rally.
Started in dragon boats at Masters Games, Newcastle 2001, rep Aus 2003 -7 (China, Europe, Sabah). Oc’ing 2002 / now- raced in some great places with great crews incl Cook Is, Hamilton Is, Takapuna,  but not Hawaii, Norfolk Is, Samoa  yet.