Arthur Ayrault

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Arthur Ayrault
Medal record
Men’s rowing
Representing the  United States
Olympic Games
Gold medal – first place 1956 Melbourne Coxed pair
Gold medal – first place 1960 Rome Coxless four

Arthur Delancey "Dan" Ayrault, Jr. (January 21, 1935 – February 24, 1990) was an American competitive rower and two-time Olympic gold medalist. While competing at the 1956 Summer Olympics in Melbourne, Australia, Ayrault won a gold medal in coxed pair with Conn Findlay and Kurt Seiffert.[1] During the 1960 Summer Olympics in Rome, Italy, he earned a gold medal in coxless four. Ayrault's teammates were Ted Nash, John Sayre, and Rusty Wailes.[2]

Early life and education[edit]

Ayrault was born in Long Beach, California on January 21, 1935. He graduated from the Morristown School (now Morristown-Beard School) in Morristown, New Jersey in 1952. Morristown-Beard School inducted Ayrault into their Athletics Hall of Fame in 1986.[3] In 1956, he earned his bachelor's degree in philosophy at Stanford University. During his time at Stanford, Ayrault served as captain of the Cardinals' rowing team. Stanford's Department of Athletics later inducted Aryault into the school's Hall of Fame. He completed his master's degree at Harvard University in Cambridge, Massachusetts.

Teaching career[edit]

Following his rowing career, Ayrault taught at Lakeside School in Seattle, Washington. After Lakeside School named him as their headmaster in 1969, he served in that role until 1990. In 1971, Ayrault guided the merger of Lakeside School (then an all-boys school) with the all-girls St. Nicholas School. During his 21-year tenure with Lakeside School, Ayrault oversaw funding campaigns to construct Pigott Memorial Library, a field house, and St. Nicholas Hall for Humanities and Arts. Students who attended Lakeside during that period included Bill Gates and Paul Allen, the co-founders of Microsoft Corporation.[4][5] In 1980, the Washington State Association for Supervision and Curriculum Development awarded Ayrault their Outstanding Educator award.[6]

Military service[edit]

Ayrault's father served with the U.S. Navy during World War II. He commanded the USS Tucson (CL-98), an Atlanta-class light cruiser between July 10 and August 14, 1945. Ayrault later received the Legion of Merit for his service commanding the ship.[7]

Community service[edit]

In 1958, Ayrault co-founded the Lake Washington Rowing Club. He then supported the rowing club during the next 32 years. Ayrault served as the president and chairman of the Pacific Science Center between 1980 and 1984. He also served as a member of the Board of Directors of the Seattle Chamber Music Society [6] and the George Pocock Rowing Foundation. The foundation established their Ayrault Fund in honor of Ayrault. The Ayrault Fund facilitates the foundation's outreach activities to promote the sport of rowing.[8]

Aryault Memorial Lecture Series[edit]

In 1994, friends and family members of Ayrault endowed the Ayrault Memorial Lecture Series at Lakeside School in his honor. Notable speakers at the lecture series have included:


  1. ^ "1956 Summer Olympics -- Melbourne, Australia -- Rowing". Archived from the original on 2007-12-08. 
  2. ^ "1960 Summer Olympics -- Rome, Italy -- Rowing". Archived from the original on 2007-09-04. 
  3. ^ Morristown-Beard School: Hall of Fame
  4. ^ "About the Dan Ayrault Memorial Endowed Lecture" (PDF). Lakeside School. Archived from the original (PDF) on 2014-05-09. Retrieved 2014-08-08. 
  5. ^ Hannula, Don (1996-07-25). "Looking Back 36 Years At An Olympic Moment". The Seattle Times. Retrieved 2008-05-15. 
  6. ^ a b Winfield, Phyllis (1990). "Colleagues Recall With, Warmth Of Dan Ayrault -- Lakeside Headmaster Believed In Giving Back To The Community". The Seattle Times. 
  7. ^ Valor Awards for Arthur Delancey Ayrault Archived 2014-02-21 at the Wayback Machine. "The President of the United States of America takes pleasure in presenting the Legion of Merit with Combat "V" to Captain Arthur DeLancey Ayrault (NSN: 0-56952), United States Navy, for exceptionally meritorious conduct in the performance of outstanding services to the Government of the United States as Commanding Officer of the U.S.S. TUCSON (CL-98), in action against enemy Japanese forces in Empire waters from 10 July to 14 August 1945."
  8. ^ George Pockock Rowing Foundation Archived February 22, 2014, at the Wayback Machine. "The Ayrault Fund is named after Dan Ayrault, an original member of the Pocock Foundation Board, Headmaster of the Lakeside School, teacher, coach, and two-time gold-medal winning Olympic oarsman. Targeted donations, investment income, and a portion of principal appreciation of the Ayrault Fund are dedicated to a range of rowing 'outreach' activities."