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Jack Carlson (rower)

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Jack Carlson
Jack Image Official.jpg
Personal information
BornMay 22, 1987 (1987-05-22) (age 33)
EducationGeorgetown University (BSFS)
University of Oxford (DPhil)
Country United States
  • New York Athletic Club
  • Oxford Brookes University Boat Club

Jack Carlson (born May 22, 1987) is an American rower, author, and archaeologist. He represented the United States at three World Championships, and won a bronze medal at the 2015 World Rowing Championships in Aiguebelette, France,[1].

He is best known as the author of the book Rowing Blazers[2] and founder of the New York City-based menswear brand of the same name.[3]


Carlson earned a B.S.F.S. at Georgetown University's Edmund A. Walsh School of Foreign Service and a DPhil at Brasenose College, Oxford. At Oxford, he was awarded a Clarendon Scholarship[4] and studied archaeology under Dame Jessica Rawson and R.R.R. Smith. His doctoral dissertation was a comparative study of the Roman Empire and the contemporaneous Qin-Han Empire in China.[5]


Carlson is the author and illustrator of A Humorous Guide to Heraldry[6] and author of Rowing Blazers. The latter, an illustrated book about the jackets traditionally worn by rowers on such occasions as Henley Royal Regatta and their history and traditions, was a surprise success and attracted considerable media attention,[7] with book events at the Ralph Lauren flagships in New York and London.[8]

Carlson is also the author of wide-ranging academic articles.[9][10][11]

Design career[edit]

Carlson is the founder of Made-in-America menswear brand Rowing Blazers. The brand harnesses the research Carlson undertook while writing the book Rowing Blazers and draws on his experiences at Oxford, on the U.S. rowing team, and as an archaeologist. The brand's blazers are made in New York City's Garment District using vintage patterns, details and construction techniques and ethically-sourced materials.[12] Rowing Blazers is the official blazer supplier to Leander Club and a wide range of other rowing clubs,[13]. The brand has garnered a following among both a more traditional, preppy consumer base,[14] as well as a more fashion-forward, streetwear-oriented customer base.[15]

Rowing career[edit]

Carlson has represented the United States at the 2011, 2014, and 2015 World Championships. His highest finish came in 2015, with a bronze medal in the lightweight eight (the only men's medal for the United States at the 2015 World Championships).[16]

In 2013, he became one of the few people ever to win Henley Royal Regatta, Royal Canadian Henley Regatta, and the Head of the Charles Regatta in a single year. He won the Britannia Challenge Cup at Henley with Taurus Boat Club;[17], equalling the record time to the Barrier (a record that had not been matched for two decades).[18] At the Head of the Charles, he steered the second iteration of the Women's "Great Eight" and the first to win, beating the U.S. women's eight by 1.2 seconds. [19][20]

At Oxford, Carlson raced in the losing Isis crew at the 2010 Oxford-Cambridge Boat Race, and in the victorious Oxford University Lightweight Rowing Club Blue Boat at the 2011 Henley Boat Races, before switching allegiance to Oxford Brookes University Boat Club in May, 2011. He trained and raced with Brookes, in spite of being an Oxford University student. He rowed bow seat in the Brasenose College Boat Club 1st VIII, The Childe of Hale, in 2010; and coxed Brasenose to victory in a 2015 re-enactment of the first ever collegiate rowing race, contested between Brasenose College and Jesus College two hundred years earlier.[21] Prior to Oxford, Carlson rowed and coxed at Georgetown University, where he served as team captain in 2009.

Coaching career[edit]

Carlson served as chief coach for Oriel College Boat Club, Oxford, in 2011-2012 and 2013-2014. Oriel finished Head of the River in Summer Eights in both seasons; defending the Headship in 2012, and bumping Christ Church and Pembroke to recapture the Headship in 2014.[22][23]

Personal life[edit]

Carlson lives in Battery Park City with his girlfriend, national champion oarswoman Keziah Beall.[24] In his free time, he supports Row New York, a nonprofit dedicated to empowering young people through the sport of rowing. His other interests include heraldry, vexillology, and Neapolitan pizza. Carlson is a lifelong vegetarian.[25]


  1. "World Rowing". Retrieved October 22, 2015.
  2. Kristen Tauer (September 24, 2014). "Toasting 'Rowing Blazers' at Polo Ralph Lauren". Women's Wear Daily. Retrieved October 24, 2014.
  3. Aodhan Beirne (September 12, 2017). "Rower Jack Carlson Updates the Zany Sport Blazer". The New York Times. Retrieved November 3, 2017.
  4. "Clarendon Fund". Retrieved November 3, 2017.
  5. Troy Patterson (May 16, 2017). "This Startup Is Reinventing a Preppy Cult Classic". Bloomberg. Retrieved November 3, 2017.
  6. "Andrew Cusack". Retrieved October 22, 2015.
  7. Jeffrey Podolsky (August 27, 2014). "Rowing Blazers Catalogues the Long and Preppy History of the Crested Jacket". Vanity Fair. Retrieved October 22, 2015.
  8. Marshall Heyman (September 26, 2014). "Parties: East Dane, 'Rowing Blazers' and Buggy Fatherhood Initiative". Wall Street Journal. Retrieved October 22, 2015.
  9. Jack Carlson (November 1, 2011). "A symbol — but of what? Iron Age daggers, Alessi corkscrews and anthropoid embellishment reconsidered". Antiquity. Retrieved October 22, 2015.
  10. Jack Carlson (August 1, 2010). "Narrative Reliefs of the Arch of Constantine and the Panegyrici Latini". New England Classical Journal. Retrieved October 22, 2015.
  11. Jack Carlson (November 29, 2011). "China's Copycat Cities". Foreign Policy. Retrieved October 22, 2015.
  12. Zach Weiss (August 9, 2017). "World Medalist Rower Jack Carlson Just Launched a Menswear Brand". Observer. Retrieved November 3, 2017.
  13. "Rowing Blazers". Retrieved November 3, 2017.
  14. Al Castiel (June 28, 2017). "Rowing Blazers Is the New Preppy Brand of Your Dreams". Town & Country. Retrieved November 3, 2017.
  15. Renz Ofiaza (August 27, 2017). "Rowing Blazers Taps Sports D'Epoque & Merz B. Schwanen for Exclusive Pop-Up Capsule". Highsnobiety. Retrieved November 3, 2017.
  16. "USRowing". Retrieved October 22, 2015.
  17. "Taurus Boat Club Hall of Fame". Retrieved October 22, 2015.
  18. "Henley Royal Regatta Records". Retrieved November 3, 2017.
  19. "Hear the Boat Sing". Retrieved October 22, 2015.
  20. "Head of the Charles Regatta". Retrieved October 22, 2015.
  21. "Hear the Boat Sing". Retrieved October 22, 2015.
  22. "Oriel College Boat Club". Retrieved October 22, 2015.
  23. "Hear the Boat Sing". Retrieved October 22, 2015.
  24. Aodhan Beirne (September 12, 2017). "Rower Jack Carlson Updates the Zany Sport Blazer". The New York Times. Retrieved November 3, 2017.
  25. "Causes and Affiliations". Retrieved November 3, 2017.

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