International Hydrofoil Society

Award Citation


Countess Juanita Kalerghi Rothman

(Last Update 1 Sep 00)


Countess Juanita Kalerghi Rothman is a true pioneer and admired journalist of the hydrofoil industry. We tend to recognize with honors the inventors and developers of the hydrofoil. But there is another aspect of our industry which is equally important. The public must be educated to understand what is being developed in high speed surface craft in order to gain acceptance of innovative craft and for the industry to grow. Without a doubt Juanita Rothman was the first person to recognize that need and to do something about it. In October 1961 she published the first issue of "Hovering Craft and Hydrofoil." At that time very few knew the difference between a hovering craft and a hydrofoil or could even recognize one or the other. Today even grade school children can stand up and tell you the difference between the two craft. One can attribute that educational process to have begun when Countess Juanita Kalerghi, as she was known then, started the publication of "Hovering Craft and Hydrofoil."

The magazine initiated in 1961 has grown and flourished on a continuing basis. That fact alone makes the initial concept of the publication noteworthy and significant. As the industry expanded the scope of the magazine changed along with its name. While Juanita Kalerghi was still the publisher and editor, the magazine’s name changed to "High Speed Surface Craft." Today it is known as "Fast Ferry International."

In addition to her editorial and publishing accomplishments, Countess Kalerghi recognized the value of conferences and exhibitions to disseminate information about craft and builders of hydrofoils and other high speed marine vehicles. The Countess initiated, organized, and managed the first such conference and exhibition ever held in this field. The first High Speed Surface Craft Conference and Exhibition was held in England. Under her direction, others were held including one in Amsterdam, Holland. These conferences again demonstrate her foresight in providing information on the subject. Although Juanita Rothman is no longer directly involved, these conferences and exhibitions initiated by her are now held on a periodic basis.

The International Hydrofoil Society (IHS) recognizes Juanita Rothman as one of the main organizers of our society. Cooperating with the late Commander Mark Thornton, it was Countess Kalerghi who provided the energy, determination and resources to him to initiate IHS and to sustain it through difficult times. For this, IHS expresses its eternal gratitude and appreciation. Juanita Kalerghi served on the managing Council of IHS in London and on the Society’s first Board of Directors in the United States.

One of the major accomplishments of Juanita Rothman was her recognition by the first President of IHS, Baron von Schertel. On the occasion of the First International Conference of IHS held in Canada in 1982, the Baron prepared a paper on the subject of the development of the European hydrofoils. The Baron asked Countess Kalerghi to present the paper to the conference. The Baron honored her unique talents and abilities by requesting her to read his paper to the delegates.

For Countess Juanita Kalerghi Rothman’s major contributions to the growth of the hydrofoil industry and for her devotion to the International Hydrofoil Society, she is considered most deserving of this special recognition by the International Hydrofoil Society.


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