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Coaching Staff

Jeff Rodriguez

Co Head Coach-Senior

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Coach Rodriguez has been the Edina Swim Club Head Coach for 13 years.  Before that, as Head Age Group Coach in 1999-2000, he led the Age Group program to their third consecutive state title, qualifying swimmers with top 16 times in the country. The following year, he was promoted to Head Coach. 

Coach Jeff has consistently led the Senior Edina Gators in breaking state records, earning National top 10 honors, qualifying swimmers for Junior Nationals, US Open, Senior Nationals and Olympic Trials.  He has also qualified athletes for USA Swimming National Select Camp- in 2010(he was also chosen to coach) and 2014.   He has been awarded Minnesota's Senior Coach of the year 2 times-2010 and 2011.

Coach Jeff earned a Bachelor of Education in Kinesiology with minors in Psychology, Spanish and Coaching from the University of Minnesota. He was a four year letterman on the University of Minnesota Men’s Swimming Team and a member of two time Big Ten Championship titles.  Coach Jeff swam 200 Breast, 200 IM and 400 IM at the national level.

Jeff leads all Senior groups-Gold, Silver, Bronze

For fun, Coach Rodriguez enjoys exercising and traveling.

Denise Carlson

Co Head Coach-Age Group

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Coach Denise has spent the last 28 years in Minnesota fulfilling her dream of making a difference in kids' lives by coaching.  She is in her 9th year at Edina Swim Club.  Since coming to Edina, she has coached every level of swimmer, including State Champions, Zone Champions and #1 Nationally ranked swimmers and helped Edina age group swimmers set over 30 new State Records since 2006.   Denise was promoted to Co Head Coach in 2014.

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 Year. She is currently an ASCA Level 3 certified coach.

Denise directs all the 12 and under programs and leads the Prep 3 and Junior Groups.

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. 

Wojciech Palczewski

Prep 1 Coach/Prep 2 Coach

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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 work with the 9-10 year olds this season, and bring his extensive experience in swimming and personal training to the team.

He leads the Prep 1 and Prep 2 groups and assists with all other age group levels.

Wojtek is a husband and father of 3 young kids, and he loves Minnesota even during the winter time.

Rick Dunham

Gator 3 Coach

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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 the team.

Rick leads the Gator 3 group and assist with all other 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. 
 

Hailey Potter

Gator 2 Coach

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Hailey began coaching with the Gators in 2011, after several years of teaching swimming 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 graduated with a degree in Elementary Education in 2014 with an emphasis in urban classrooms.  She brings this classroom experience to her work with the youngest Gators. 

Hailey leads the Gator 2 group and assists with all other age group levels.

When not at the pool, Hailey enjoys crafting and photography.

Buzzy Anderson

Gator 1/Prep 1 Coach

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Buzzy was born in Minnesota.  Her mother required her to know how to swim in the Land of 10,000 lakes.  After 1 lesson, she joined the swim team.  After 1 ribbon, she was hooked on competing.  She spent half her growing up years in Illinois and half in Montana.  She was recruited back to Minnesota for college at Hamline University where she swam under the direction of Marty Knight.

She has been coaching swimming for many years, and loves it! She joined the Gators in the spring of 2014. Buzzy leads the Gator 1 group and assists with all other age group levels.

She is married to a great guy. They have 7 children, and they are home schooled.

In her spare time, she likes to garden, knit, and sew. Many mornings you will find her hanging out with her children, and drinking coffee.

Shanda Louw

Masters Coach/Assistant Coach

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Shanda comes to Edina Swim Club from her home state of Florida with over 20 years of swimming and coaching experience. Her most recent coaching jobs have included Greater Pensacola Aquatic Club, Auburn Aquatics, Auburn Swim Camps, and coaching the high school she graduated from in Orlando.
In high school, Shanda was a 2x All-American (50 free), a multiple school record holder, state finalist, team captain and also played water polo. She then swam her first two years of college at Indian River State College where she was a mulipule NJCAA champion, NJCAA national record holder, team record holder, and swimmer of the year in 2008. Upon completion, Shanda transferred into Florida State University where she swam against some of the country's best competition at meets such as ACCs,Winter Nationals, and the Grand Prix series.
She graduated with her Bachelor's degree in Social Science in 2010. Since her collegiate career ended, Shanda has been an active member in Masters swimming and at one point had a national record in the 50 fly (SCM).  She is our new Masters coach and assists with the age group programs.
 
Outside of the pool, Shanda is a die hard college football fan, loves to travel, a workout junkie, and a foodie. She just married her husband Gideon, who is a collegiate coach and former Olympic swimmer, and they have a furbaby named Kirra.

Mike Holmes

Assistant Coach

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Mike is Canadian born, but has lived in the Twin Cities area since he was thirteen years old.  From the age of 13 – 17 Mike won over two-dozen state titles, and picked up a central zone high-point award.

Mike attended and swam at the University of Minnesota for four years.  At the beginning of his freshman year he was told that as he was, he would not be on the traveling team or Big Ten Championship team.  He made the decision to be extremely physically dedicated and did as much as possible to research and learn as much as he could about the sport so he could better help his team.  He researched countless swim science and swim theory articles, sat in on USA Swimming clinics held at the University, and picked the minds of several National and Olympic level swimmers while they were attending invitationals at the University.

By the time he finished his senior year at the University Mike was voted two-time “Most Improved Swimmer” on the team, he was a three-time Big Ten runner-up in the mile, three-time individual NCAA qualifier and point scorer, placed 15th at U.S. Olympic Trials, placed 3rd  at Canadian Olympic Trials, and at one point was in the top 35 fastest swimmers in the world.

Mike got in to coaching and fell in love with it.  He loves being able to bring all of the things he learned from his experiences to the table.  It is extremely rewarding for him to see all of the swimmers grow as athletes and as people.  He is an ASCA level 4 certified coach as well as a certified personal trainer.

Mike assists with the Senior groups.

Nicole Hedman

Assistant Coach

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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 swimmers.

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 Rapids.

 

 

 

Jessica Carlson

Assistant Coach

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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 Harrod

Assistant Coach

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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

Assistant Coach

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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 Southern California.

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 Brau

Assistant Coach

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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.

Natalie Stoltman

Assistant Coach

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Natalie joined the Edina Swim Club staff in the fall of 2014.  She grew up in Montevideo, MN, where she swam throughout high school.  She was a MN State record holder, Team MN Zone member, Jr. National’s qualifier, team captain and currently holds 5 school records. 

After high school, Natalie attended Swarthmore College, where she was a 2-time MVP, Division III National’s swimmer & 8-time Centennial Conference champion.  She began coaching while in college, teaching private lessons for children aged 5-12, as well as working with tri-athletes of all ages.  She assists with all groups for Edina Swim Club

Natalie is currently in her third year of medical school, and despite the demanding schedule, enjoys maintaining her connection with swimming through coaching and participating in triathlons.  In her spare time, she enjoys playing gigs as a professional pianist, reading, traveling and photography.

Alissa M Tinklenberg

Assistant Coach

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Alissa grew up swimming for the Willmar, MN club team and high school team before attendingGustavus Adolphus College.  She swam for the Gusties and helped them to 4 MIAC Conference Titles, along with becoming an NCAA 12-Time All-American, specializing in backstroke and sprint freestyle.  Alissa also swims with the Edina Masters swim team as she trains for triathlons.  She assists with the Senior swimmers.

Alissa is an Associate Auditor at Clifton Larson Allen.  In her free time, she enjoys trying new recipes from Pinterest and walking/running on the beautiful trails in the metro area.

Board of Directors

Brad Gray

President

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Cyd Perszyk

Past President

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Janel Dressen

Vice President & Secretary

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Andrew Priadka

Co-Treasurer

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Chris Lyche

Member At Large

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Lisa Mellum

Meet Director

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Liz Kniffen

Volunteer Coordinator

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Jeff Rodriguez

Head Coach

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Denise Carlson

Head Coach

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Jeff Kirkwold

Member At Large

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Steven Larson

Member At Large

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