Theo de Rooij was born on April 25, 1957 in Harmelen (The Netherlands) and was the first of four children in the family of glasshouse worker and father Giel de Rooij and mother Corry. After his elementary school period in Vleuten he attended the boy's boarding school ‘Leeuwenhorst' in Noordwijkerhout and finished high school in 1975 at the ‘Bonifatius College' in Utrecht.
After that in 1979 he finished his business school education ‘HEAO' in Utrecht. During that period he was a successful junior and amateur rider, competing on world class level. Some victories:
From 1980 until 1990 he was a professional rider with the teams of IJsboerke (´80), Capri Sonne ('81-'82; teams directed by Walter Godefroot) TI-Raleigh ('83) and Panasonic ('84-'90; teams directed by Peter Post). During this period he competed amongst others 8x in the Tour de France, where he finished nineteenth overall in 1982.
Most important wins:
Stage wins in:
From 1991 until 1994 he was assistant director sportif with Panasonic (´91-´92) and Histor-Laser Computer under the direction of Peter Post. The most important successes during that period were the overall World Cup wins of Olaf Ludwig (1991) and Maurizio Fondriest (1992) as well as several wins in Tour de France stages (Ekimov, Ludwig) and World Cup Classics (a.o. Ludwig Amstel Gold Race 1991).
In 1995 he worked as manager in charge of sports marketing for Shimano Europe.
At the end of 1995 he was asked by Jan Raas to assist him in creating the Rabobank Cycling Teams. Until 2003 he was working as Director Sportif, from 2004 till august 2007 as General Director of the Rabobank Cycling Teams.
Under the responsibility of Theo de Rooij, over the span of twelve years, Rabobank has won 6 World titles, 81 national championships, 10 World Cup Classics and 27 stages in the three grand tours. His contribution to a total number of 1738 victories was a crucial one.