Hats off to our esteemed leader: Sharon Green!
Hi, it’s Betsy here, and I’ve hijacked the March blog to share some brilliant news! You see, Sharon Green was recently awarded the Carl Robinette Memorial Trophy for Outstanding Contribution to Yachting by the esteemed Santa Barbara Yacht Club (SBYC)! And while Sharon won’t toot her own horn, her Ultimate Sailing team and family are proud to spotlight this incredible and well-deserved honor.
I know many think Sharon is always flitting around the globe to hoity-toity yachting destinations. But in truth, she is a vital part of the sailing community in her hometown of Santa Barbara, and throughout Southern California. Sharon is tirelessly out on the racecourse photographing local and junior sailing, which she also contributes to: donating merchandise to youth regattas, women’s sailing conventions, and other charitable organizations and events.
And if she’s not on a photo boat, chances are pretty good you’ll find her on the helm of TACHYON racing in the rabid Harbor 20 fleet.
Don’t be fooled by that genteel ‘Harbor 20’ name: in Santa Barbara the fleet races out in the ocean, in robust wind and seas, flying spinnakers in Sharon’s favorite ‘fresh to frightening’ conditions! More than once I’ve been Sharon’s human-dodger, doused with waves coming over the bow, everyone shrieking with laughter.
Sharon’s inimitable capture of light, angles, and spray may be her professional signature, but anyone who’s been in Sharon’s presence will agree that her delightful laughter is one of her most iconic and beloved personal characteristics.
In presenting this award, Jane Watkins, a longtime and respected member of SBYC, explained that Carl Robinette was a treasured member of SBYC, who in 1968 started the Santa Barbara Youth Foundation. Known for his dedication and benevolence, this trophy was dedicated to his memory in 1979, after his passing. “The qualities the Trophy Committee considers in this nomination include a history of dedication and contributions to the sport of sailing,” Jane said.
“Sharon is so deserving of this coveted award,” Jane continued. “She has given so much to Santa Barbara Yacht Club over the years, as well as the global sailing community, with her spectacular photo coverage. She has bestowed our events a new prestige by sharing her talent with us, in addition to the sponsorship Ultimate Sailing provides to many of our top regattas.There is nothing more gratifying than seeing your crew in an Ultimate Sailing photo in one of her post-race presentations, or calendar!"
Coming from SBYC, this award is no small potatoes. SBYC was founded in 1872 and is the second-oldest yacht club on the west coast of North America. SBYC has a rich history and tradition, embracing both a competitive and family orientation. ‘Not to mention a spectacular setting right on the beach, where the Carl Robinette trophy – a handsome ship's wheel – hangs at the entry.
Jane added, “Sharon’s recognition was a surprise to her, and was scheduled at the SBYC Annual Awards Dinner as a grand finale toward the end of the evening. As usual, Sharon was jumping around taking photos of all the other awardees, and was pleasantly shocked to hear she was getting this tremendous honor.”
Said Sharon, “I was so surprised to receive this award and honored to join the ranks of the other recipients like Dave Ullman. I am a proud member of SBYC and privileged to be able to share my lifelong passion and profession to further the sport of sailing.“
Because it truly ‘takes a village’ to support the sport of sailing. And it’s not just a sport: it’s a community and a way of life. It’s health and fitness, it’s being one with nature. It’s a practice in independence, or teamwork, or both. And we all need to step in and share our talents to ensure the future of this great pastime, for generations to come.
So, hats off to Sharon! We are proud of you and your contributions and accomplishments and are delighted you have received this fitting honor from SBYC.
Oh, and about that March photo in the 2020 Ultimate Sailing Calendar:
this dramatic shot was captured at the J70 World Championship regatta at Eastern Yacht Club in Marblehead, MA.
Sharon said the huge fleet made for thrilling starts and mark roundings – particularly on the first two days when conditions were wild.
“For several days we had a photo boat on wheels that launched down the ramp and, ‘Off you go!’” she added. “It was a riot driving down the ramp and splashing down, with Phil Smith on the helm – one of an incredible army of volunteers who put on this event. What a blast!”
- Betsy (Crowfoot) Senescu
The legendary J-class yacht Velsheda plunges into a surly Mediterranean with might and determination at the top of our January 2023 pages. Much like our entrance to the New Year, this treasured classic battles ahead with hope and determination. It’s what we do!
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Ultimate Sailing Contributor