Janet Cowie, Director of Instruction Programs at Zoar Outdoor Adventure Resort in Charlemont, Mass., is the recipient of the American Canoe Association’s “Excellence in Instruction” Award for 2011. She was recognized at the ACA’s National Paddlesports Conference in Louisville, Ky. earlier this month. The prestigious “Excellence in Instruction” award recognizes outstanding contributions in paddlesports education and instruction, and it’s given each year to a deserving member of the ACA.
Since joining the team in 1996, Janet has helped Zoar Outdoor’s instruction program grow to be one of the premier kayak schools in the country, and her accolades and certifications are numerous. She helped organize the first Whitewater Symposium and has been part of the committee for subsequent symposiums. Her love affair with paddlesports began back in 1983, during her freshman year in college, when she accompanied the Outing Club at the University of Massachusetts in Amherst on a whitewater canoeing trip. After graduating with a degree in Business Administration, she continued to pursue her love of the water on weekends until making it her full-time job with Zoar Outdoor. She currently lives in Rowe, Mass. with her husband and son.
The American Canoe Association is a member based, national nonprofit organization serving the broader paddling public by providing education related to all aspects of paddling; stewardship support to help protect paddling environments; and sanctioning of programs and events to promote paddlesport competition and recreation.