Co Head Coach
Jeff Rodriguez is in his 15th year as Head Coach of Edina Swim
Club. As Head Coach, Jeff is responsible for the senior
program and the overall vision and success of the club, meanwhile,
training each senior swimmer to their highest level.
His coaching experience includes developing athletes at all
levels. Jeff started within the Edina program in 1997 as an
assistant coach and became lead age group coach in 1998. As
age group coach in 1998, 1999, 2000, Jeff led Edina’s Age
Group program to three consecutive state Championships. Jeff became
Head Coach in 2002 and currently coaches the three senior groups
Bronze, Silver, and Gold. Under his leadership, ESC has
consistently placed in the top 3 at the Minnesota Championships and
has won over 70 plus Top 2 age group awards at the state level.
In the past five years, Jeff has coached more than 60 athletes
who have competed at the USA and NCSA Junior National Championships
and coached swimmers at the Olympic Trials in 2012. Athletes
on the Edina Senior and National Teams regularly place on USA
Swimming's top 10 lists and have set over 40 numerous MN state
records and 200 plus ESC club records. Jeff was named Coach of the
Year in 2010 and 2011, selected as Staff for USA National Select
Camp in 2010 and attended in 2014. He was also selected as staff
for the USA Central Zone Select Camp in 2015.
Jeff's coaching philosophy focuses on being a well-rounded
athlete and he enjoys seeing athletes continue swimming into the
next phase of their careers. He has a strong belief there is a
place for everyone on a team and swimming is a lifetime sport.
As an athlete himself, Jeff competed at the Division 1 level for
University of Minnesota in 1994-1998. He was a member of the
Big Ten Championship Team in 1996 that won the first championship
in over 70 years to start a new tradition for the Gophers.
Jeff came away from his college career being a two time Big Ten
Champion (team), received Jerry McCual Award, two time Iron Fish
Award, Four time Letter “M” Winner, Hardest Worker and
Most Improved and a Member of the Dean’s List and 3.0 club.
His events were 200 Breast, 200IM and 400IM during the Big Ten and
at the National level. Coach Jeff earned a Bachelor of
Education in Kinesiology with minors in Psychology, Spanish and
Coaching from the University of Minnesota.
Away from the pool, Jeff enjoys traveling all over the world and
stays active with exercise.
Co Head Coach
Coach Denise is her 10th year of coaching
on Edina Club and her 3rd year as Co Head Coach. She is one
of a few Minnesota Coaches who have achieved an ASCA Level
4 rating, having spent the last 28 years in Minnesota
fulfilling her dream of making a difference in kids' lives through
the sport. As one of the Co Head Coaches, Denise's
role is create a vision for the club that starts with developing
the youngest Gators to the be the best they can be in all aspects
of swimming, and inspiring them to continue all the way through
college. More importantly she sees the sport as a way to teach
valuable life skills that transfer way beyond the pool. She
directs all 12 and under programming and trains the Junior and the
Since starting her career, she has coached
every level of swimmer from the very beginner to State
Champions, Zone Champions, Nationally ranked swimmers and Junior
National qualifiers. Under her leadership, Edina age group
swimmers have set over 30 new State Records since 2006, and
achieved over 40 Top 10 National times. Denise was promoted
to Co Head Coach in 2013.
She has been a Minnesota Zone Coach 6
times, Minnesota ASCA President, Minnesota Swimming Coach
Representative, and Minnesota Disability Chair. In 2011,
Denise was awarded the Minnesota Age Group Coach of the
She graduated in 1987 from the University
of Minnesota with a degree in Psychology, lives in Woodbury with
her husband, and has 4 grown children of her own. In her
spare time, she enjoys working out and spending time with friends
8 and Under Developmental Head Coach
Wojtek began coaching with the Gators in the summer of 2014. He
comes from Poland where he swam from age 7 through all elementary,
middle and high school. He graduated from the University of Warsaw,
with a degree in Physical Education and Coaching. His entire
working career has been connected with swimming. He worked as
instructor and coach for the Vulcans Swim Club Lincoln in
England for 2 years. He then opened and managed his own swim school
for kids age 2 and over, before coming to America in 2013. He
is excited to bring his extensive experience in swimming and
personal training to the team. Wojtek directs the 8 and under
swimmers on our team and directly leads the Gator 1 and Gator 3
Wojtek is a husband and father of 3 young kids, and he loves
Minnesota even during the winter time.
Senior Bronze Lead Coach
Although Isaac is Rwandan, he grew up in Jinja, Uganda and
started swimming as a young boy. He began swimming
competitively at age 12. In his swimming career, he competed
for the country of Uganda at the All Africa Games and the World
Championships in Italy in 2005. He graduated with a B.S.
degree in Sports Science from United States University in Nairobi,
Over the last 10 years Isaac has taught swimming to children as
young as 3 years old all the way up to high school athletes.
He was the Head Coach for the International School of Uganda Swim
Team winning 8 conference championships. In 2013 Isaac became
the Athletic Director/PE Teacher at GEMS Cambridge International
School in Kampala, Uganda. Isaac started a swim team at the
school in 2013. By 2015, GEMS ranked 3rd among all
international schools in Uganda beating his former ISU team.
Since 2007, Isaac served as Ugandas National Swimming Head
Coach. He has coached athletes to various World Championship
games, Common Wealth Games, All Africa Games and the Youth
Olympics. In 2012, one of his swimmers qualified for the 2012
Olympic Games in London. Isaac was chosen as the Ugandan Head
Swimming Coach for the 2012 Olympics.
Isaac also started a private swimming club in Uganda. The
club had grown to 60 kids ranging in age from 7-18 years old.
Isaac loves to help swimmers reach their full potential and reach
the highest level of swimming they can.
Isaac moved to the U.S. with his wife in May 2015. They
live in Prior Lake and enjoy being outside and being in the
water. Isaac is excited to be part of the Gator coaching
Masters Coach, Senior Prep Lead Coach
Jim's not new to
coaching; he’s been a swim coach since 1973 and coached full
time since 1980. His passion for swimming has influenced many
of his former swimmers who now coach all over the United States,
many in Minnesota.
In 2011 Jim
received the Jimi Flowers Disability Swimming Coach of the Year
Award at the United States Aquatics Convention awards ceremony held
in Jacksonville, Florida. This most prestigious coaching
award is named in honor and memory of Jimi Flowers, an incredible
coach who developed numerous Olympic and Paralympic
champions. Jim is also a past
recipient of the Disability Swimming Outstanding Coach Award
Over the years Jim has received other awards including Minnesota
Swimming Senior Coach of the Year (2005) and Senior Athlete of the
Year (University of Saint Thomas) but his greatest reward comes as
a coach watching an athlete strive to become the best he or she can
be and in being a part of that journey.
Jim was raised
in a family where exercise was encouraged and he runs every day,
mainly in Edina where he and his wife Diane have lived since
1984. He completed the first ten Twin Cities Marathons and in
1992 both Jim and Diane qualified for the
Gator 2 Lead Coach, Prep 1 Lead Coach
Nicole comes to Edina Swim Club with over 30 years of swimming
and coaching experience. For the past 10 years she lead an
Age Group program in San Diego, CA. In that time she
developed many Nationally ranked age group swimmers, 3 of which
went on to compete at the US Olympic Trials. She also
developed many Junior Olympic Qualifiers/Champions/Record Holders,
Far Western Qualifiers/Champions, Zone Qualifiers/Champions, and
Sectional Qualifiers. She was also voted Age Group Coach of
the Year while she was in San Diego. Before coaching in
California, Nicole coached in Minnesota. She was the Head
Girls High School Swimming Coach at Mounds View High School for
three years, and during that time she was voted Section Coach of
the Year twice. She was also an Assistant Senior Coach
with Burnsville Swim Club, Edina Swim Club and Mounds View Swim
She grew up swimming in Minnesota with the Burnsville Swim Club
and then went on to swim at St Olaf College. She assists with
the Senior groups on Edina Swim Club.
Nicole just retired from the United States Navy and works as a
Sales Manager at Lee Products Company in Bloomington,
Coach Hailey has a combined 10 years of experience in teaching
and coaching swimming. She is in her 5th year on Edina Swim
Club, after teaching swimming at Lifetime fitness, and coaching for
SEMS and Eastridge High School. She was a 6 year letter
winner at Woodbury High School, and swam at the University of North
Dakota. She has a degree in Elementary Education and is
currently a pre school teacher in Edina. She brings this
experience to her work with the youngest Gators.
Haileyassists with all age group levels.
When not at the pool, Hailey enjoys crafting
and photography. She is married and lives in St. Paul
with her husband.
Nicole Hedman joined the Edina staff in September 2012 and has
been involved in swimming for over 30 years as a club swimmer, high
school swimmer, college swimmer, and coach. She has extensive
coaching experience with a number of metro area clubs (ABC swim
club, MVSC, Elk River, and Jetstream Aquatics) and also high
schools (Elk River, Anoka, Champlin Park, and Skyview in
Montana). Nicole has had the honor of being a Team MN
zone coach for 8 years, coaching the 15 & over girls, 11-12
girls and the 10 & under girls.
As a swimmer, her personal accomplishments include being captain
for her high school and college teams. She was a High
school state qualifier and 2 time NCAA qualifier. Coach
Nicole's career coaching accomplishments include:
- 25 state champions ages 8 & under to senior level
- 50+ swimmers as zone qualifiers
- 5 junior national qualifiers
- 3 team state championships
Nicole loves seeing the faces of the swimmers when they
have an “I get it moment” or when they surprise even
themselves with their swims. She assists with the Senior
She is married to Mark and has 3 children, Nick, Matthew, and
Jacob. She grew up in Ramsey, MN and graduated from Anoka
High School and then graduated from the College of St. Catherine
with a degree in Elementary Education. She recently went back
to school and finished her middle school math endorsement.
Nicole currently teaches math at Northdale Middle School in Coon
Jessica has been coaching with Edina Swim Club since 2011, and
is also involved with our Masters swim team. She grew up
swimming for Woodbury High School and Twin Cities Swim Team, and
went on to swim at the University of North Dakota where she was
North Central Conference Champion in the 1650, 4 year letter
earner, and NCAA All American, and was named Hardest worker and
Most improved during her time there.
She assists with all the age group levels.
Jessica is a CPA and works in finance with Lifetouch. In
her spare time, she enjoys training for triathlons.
Kim grew up in Burnsville, swimming on Blackdog and coaching
there for years. She went on to swim for all 4 years at the
University of Minnesota. She has been teaching math at
Burnsville High School for the last 11 years and has also been the
girl's high school coach there since 2008. Kim has been a 10
time zones coach as well as the Head Zones Coach in 2012. She
joined the Gator staff in 2008 and works with all groups.
Griffin Moodie grew up swimming for the Edina Gators from age 6
to 18. The majority of that time he was coached under Head Coach
Jeff Rodriguez. Griffin also swam for Edina High School for 6
years, lettered all 6 years and was captain of the team his senior
year under Coach Art Downey. Post high school, Griffin attended
Boston University and swam Division 1 where he was also captain his
senior year and graduated with a Bachelor of Arts in International
Relations. After college Griffin moved to Los Angeles where he
worked various jobs and continued swimming for recreation with Rose
Bowl Aquatics and the Trojan Swim Club at the University of
Since moving back to Minnesota Griffin has enjoyed coaching the
Gators greatly. Beyond swimming, Griffin enjoys biking, golf,
music, movies and reading. He is looking forward to another
competitive swim season and is extremely impressed by the team and
how it has grown. He assists with all levels.
Abbey grew up swimming for Team Foxjet and Eden Prairie High School
before attending the College of St. Benedict. She continued her
swimming career into four years of collegiate swimming, finding a
love for long distance events. Abbey also swims with the Edina
Masters swim team now as she trains for open water swims,
completing swims around Key West and across San Francisco Bay in
the last two years.
She assists with all age group levels.
Abbey is an account executive for, advertising agency, Periscope.
When not working you can find her training for an upcoming event,
brunching with family and friends or re-reading Harry Potter.
Rick swam for Edina Swim Club, Edina High School and the
University of Texas at Arlington, a short lived D1 program with a
top finish of 3rd at NCAA's. In between practice times, he earned a
degree in Economics. He held the school record for the 1650,
and was carried by three other swimmers to be on the 800 free relay
to achieve a team record that was never broken.
Sherri his wife of 36 years and he have two children. Caitlin
and Richard exceeded their parents swimming goals of becoming
drown proofed. They both were captains for Wayzata High School's
Swimming Team and one swam at the Olympic Trials in 2012.
Coach Dunham started coaching in in 1972 and has coached in
Minnesota for the last fifteen years. He is very excited to be part
of the great things happening at Edina Swim Club, and hopes to help
every swimmer realize how important they are, and how important to
Rick assists with all age group levels.
When not coaching, his favorite activity is swimming in Lake
Minnetonka with people he has been swimming with for over
forty years. Swimming is a life time sport.