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US Sailing Foundation nominates new board members

by US Sailing 13 Nov 2020 10:17 PST
Tom Whidden, Linda Lindquist-Bishop, Brian Keane © US Sailing

The US Sailing Foundation has announced the nomination of three new members to its Board of Directors. As part of US Sailing's plan to recruit leaders from the business, philanthropic and sailing communities, the National Governing Body today names Brian Keane, Linda Lindquist-Bishop, and Tom Whidden to the US Sailing Foundation Board of Directors.

William J. Ruh (Del Mar, Calif.), Chair of the US Sailing Foundation, is leading an active and passionate board comprised of seasoned directors. The Foundation is committed to the development of resources that will strengthen and sustain the fundamental drivers of growth, innovation and excellence in the sport, with a focus on supporting youth sailing and Olympic Sailing.

"Given the Foundation's renewed commitment to Olympic and youth sailing, we are honored to add three sailing luminaries to our board," said Ruh. "They have each demonstrated an immense passion for the sport of sailing, and the respect they have within our community is unparalleled. We welcome them to the board, and look forward to their future contributions to the Foundation's initiatives."

The news follows last weekend's announcement of the newly elected US Sailing Board members and the release of the new Strategic Plan for 2021-2024 at US Sailing's virtual Annual Meeting and Town Hall.

Meet the new US Sailing Foundation Board of Directors:

Linda Lindquist-Bishop (Newport, R.I.)

Over the past 30 years, Linda Lindquist-Bishop has been a trailblazer in the world of offshore yacht racing. She has sailed on over 100 teams winning two Farr 40 World Championships in 2004 and 2009 and multiple national championships.

Lindquist-Bishop made history as a member of America3, the first and only all-women's team to compete in the America's Cup in 1995, simultaneously competing as a team member and spearheading their successful sponsorship program.

As Publisher of Yachting Magazine (Times Mirror), she leveraged her grand prix sports success and 15-years of brand building in the luxury goods market.

Lindquist-Bishop currently serves as President of Courageous Thinking Inc. facilitating strategic clarity and alignment for companies and individuals in transition. Combining her athletic and business expertise, she creates dynamic speaking and teaching experiences for corporate, non-profit, government, military, and faith-based audiences.

Lindquist-Bishop continues to serve on local and national boards in her areas of passion - specifically economic development, sailing, women in sports and Impact 100 - an international women's philanthropy movement.

A passionate mentor and advocate of inspiring and developing women leaders, she is also co-founder and Executive Director of the Rising Tide Leadership Institute (RTLI).

Linda was awarded Glamour magazine's 'Women of the Year' in 1995, International Women in Boating 'Woman of the Year in 1995, and Lifetime Television's list of '100 Women of the Century' in 1997.

"Sailing has brought me the greatest joys in my life through competition, global travel, lifelong friendships and the opportunity to consistently challenge myself and learn," said Lindquist-Bishop. "I want to help more people access, participate in, and excel in this sport which has given me so much."

Brian Keane (Marion, Mass.)

Brian Keane has excelled as a competitive sailor and in the business world throughout his career. Keane is an entrepreneur in the technology industry and has served as CEO of Keane, Inc., Dextrys, and Ameritas Technologies.

In the sailing world, Keane has served as a member of the Olympic Sailing Committee since 2017. He has won a J/80 World Championship, multiple national championships, and US Sailing Championships, including the Championship of Champions, U.S. Team Racing Championship, and U.S. Junior Doublehanded Championship.

Keane is a four-time College Sailing All-American (1980, '81, '82, '83) while competing at Harvard. He is a graduate of Harvard College and the Harvard Business School.

Keane also serves on local boards and councils in areas of interest, including the Boys and Girls Club of Boston for 18 years, and previously served as a Trustee for the Mass Technology Leadership Council for more than 10 years.

"I believe deeply that sailing and sailboat racing can help teach important life lessons such as leadership, teamwork, and perseverance," said Keane. "Getting involved in the Foundation is an opportunity to give back to the sport I love, and to help aspiring athletes in their pursuit of excellence."

Tom Whidden (Essex, Conn.)

Tom Whidden is one of the most decorated U.S. sailors of all time. He is President and CEO of North Technology Group and a Past Commodore of the Essex Yacht Club. A member of the America's Cup Hall of Fame, Tom has raced in eight America's Cup campaigns and won the three times (1980, 1986-87, 1988), sailing primarily as a tactician for Dennis Conner. Whidden has also been elected to the National Sailing Hall of Fame.

Whidden has won the Newport to Bermuda Race five times and has collected many wins on the European racing circuit. He is active in the Maxi and Superyacht circuit and has published three books, most recently the Art and Science of Sails in 2016.

Whidden joined North Sails in 1987 and helped build it into one of the largest sailmaking companies in the world. He later became CEO and co-owner of North Technology Group. Since Whidden took the reins, every America's Cup winner since 1992 and every Volvo Ocean Race winner since 1993 has raced with North Sails.

A graduate of Colby College in Waterville, Maine, Whidden earned Colby's Carl Nelson Award for Athletic Achievement in 1989, and the University Club Man of the Year Award in 1987. In October of 2020, Mystic Seaport Museum honored Whidden with the 2020 America and the Sea Award. The prestigious award recognizes individuals whose extraordinary achievements in the world of maritime exploration, competition, scholarship, and design best exemplify the American character.

"I am passionate about the sport of sailing and want to help it in any way I can," said Whidden. "I want to help people gain access to sailing to give everyone a chance to participate."

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