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Brian Pahlmann Joins RYA Scotland Team as New Regional Development Officer

1st July 2022
Brian Pahlmann
Brian Pahlmann has a strong background in community sports and active lifestyles Credit: RYA Scotland

Brian Pahlmann joins the team at RYA Scotland as the regional development officer (RDO) for the North of Scotland and the Islands.

Hailing from the United States and with a strong background in community sports and active lifestyles, Pahlmann is a relative newcomer to boating in Scottish waters.

But the association says: “We welcome [his] input in expanding the reach of RYA Scotland to help foster the people, places and communities in the north of Scotland to benefit fully from rewarding and safe boating activities.”

The RDO role is “integral to help growing and supporting the boating communities at a local, regional and national level to ensure that we are working collaboratively to develop the people, pathways and opportunities to be involved within boating activities and sports”.

RYA Scotland says this regional approach has had success in both the east and west regions and it is looking forward to building a stronger connection with affiliates in the north and the islands.

Commenting on his new role, Pahlmann said: “I’m really looking forward to the role and while I feel relatively new to sports development, my background in physical therapy and sports medicine in the States led me to work with sports clubs and see the impact sport can have on everyday lives.

“I had a great experience working in Aberdeenshire and I want to have a bigger impact, which I hope to have with this role with RYA Scotland.

“The thing that took me was when I came to Scotland and got involved in sport clubs. For me it was all about impact. When someone I respected asked me to become chair of ClubSport Abereen, and with my time with Aberdeen Amateur Athletics Club (AAAC) I thought this is a way I could expand the impact I can have.

“Working in sports science I could help individuals or small group at a time, whereas with AAAC we had 350 members and then through ClubSport we had nearly 20,000 members. Creating and understanding that wider impact drew me to this role.

“I’ve been on a few lakes and rivers, but have no major boating experience. My work is about helping people and gathering new experiences and memories. In fact, I was very late to the water, actually learning to swim in my thirties, as my family in Illinois never really liked the water.

“I figured out I could actually swim, but needed to work on my breathing so joined a masters swimming class before going on and starting to compete in triathlons. Looking forward to learning the ropes, alongside helping support organisations to grow the impact they can have on their local communities.”

RYA Scotland development manager Liza Linton said: “We are very pleased to have Brian join us to help develop sailing and boating in the North and Islands of Scotland. His experience and passion of working within a sports development and club environment are well suited to the task ahead to provide support to organisations within the North of Scotland.

“He also brings some great volunteer experience of working within local sports councils and energising clubs across the sports under his chairmanship of ClubSport Aberdeen.”

Pahlmann and his fellow RDOs Georgia Moran and Laura Cowan are planning to be out and about over the summer meeting clubs and centres across Scotland. If you are having an event or training or a social gathering you would like them to know about, get in touch at [email protected]

Published in Scottish Waters Team

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