Our Staff

 

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For Gisella swimming has been a way of life for as long as she can remember. Growing up in south Florida, her family believed it was an important life skill to have.  In a few years time she was enrolled onto a local swim team in Plantation, Fl and the rest is history. In 2006, she signed with the Colorado State University swim team and was there all 4 years. After graduating with her bachelor’s degree in fine arts with a focus in graphic design, she decided to take a risk and further her swimming career. She had the opportunity to travel and compete for the Colombia National swim team in 2010. She recently moved back from living in Milan, Italy where she lived for a year and is beyond excited to pass on her knowledge and experience to swimmers of all levels!

Heather never participated in organized swimming as a youngster; in fact, she learned to swim as an adult. In 2000, she was dared to compete in a triathlon and quickly learned that there was more to swimming then just fighting your way from one end of the pool to the other.

Over the past 14 years, she has become a student of the stroke. She has spent countless hours researching the topic of swimming, coaching newbies and masters alike on the importance of technique, writing an e-book entitled, “Tip-2-Toe Technique” and conducting numerous open water clinics.

Heather can relate to the fear and uncertainty in approaching the water and works very hard to assist her swimmers in “feeling” the water so that they can become confident and more importantly efficient.

Since learning to swim, Heather has participated in 40+ triathlons of all distances and a handful of endurance swims with the longest being the Horsetooth 10K last summer in Fort Collins, CO. Heather is married with two boys and is a Colorado native and self-proclaimed mermaid.

Hi, I’m Caroline Tovani and I’m going to be a junior at the University of Arizona. I’m currently study Family Studies and Human Development with a minor in English. I’ve been a swimmer most of my life, I started swimming when I was 6 for my neighborhood swim team the Homestead Hurricanes. I swam with them until I was 16. When I was 10 I started year round swimming for the Colorado Athletic Club Stingrays until I was 18. I also swam for my high school Cherry Creek for all four years; swimming in high school was one of my favorite memories. Finally during my freshman year in college I was on the club swim team for U of A! I love swimming; it is a huge part of my life and I can’t wait to work with your kids this summer!
Michael Mann is the co-founder of SwimLabs. He is a Colorado native who started swimming at the age of six, then went on to play Water Polo and swim at the University of New Mexico, where he earned his business degree at the Robert Anderson School of Business. Mike went on to work as a sales representative for Mitsubishi of Japan and partnering in a 200 location electronics store start up called Video Concepts. His business resume also includes a 14 year stint owning and operating three full service restaurants, six years managing a BMC Millwork operation with billings in excess of $40 million, and prior to opening SwimLabs worked as a franchise broker. His love of water sports destined him to opening the first SwimLabs in 2007. Mike continues to participate in Masters Swimming and Water Polo, and has earned All American status in both sports. Mike currently owns 11 world records in Master swimming and was twice awarded World Master Swimmer of the Year in 2009 and 2010. Mike still coaches masters swimming, and insists his success is attributable to his lovely wife of 30+ years Ann and his three beautiful daughters.

Kara Lynn attended the University of Georgia, where she swam for the Georgia Bulldogs swimming and diving team from 2004 to 2007. During her freshman year, Kara Lynn won five individual NCAA championships, including two individual titles (50-meter and 100-meter freestyle), helping Georgia to its third consecutive national runner-up finish. As a sophomore, she led Georgia to its first NCAA Women’s Swimming and Diving Championship in four years by defending her individual titles in the 50-yard and 100-yard freestyle, as well as adding a fourth place in the 200-yard freestyle. During the 2006 NCAA Championships, Kara Lynn led the Bulldogs to a second place finish with five NCAA titles and Swimmer of the Year honors. She broke the American record in the 50-yard freestyle and defended her 100-yard freestyle title and added to that with a win in the 200-yard freestyle. During the 2004 Athens Olympic Games, Kara Lynn earned a pair of silver medals as a member of the 4x100-meter freestyle and the 4x100-meter medley relays. In her individual events, she finished fifth in both the 50-meter and 100-meter freestyle races. During the 2008 Beijing Olympic Games, she earned a pair of silver medals as a member of the 4x100-meter freestyle and the 4x100-meter medley relays. In her individual events, she finished sixth in both the 50-meter freestyle. At the 2012 Summer Olympics in London, she posted a time of 25.28 seconds in Heat 8 of the 50-meter freestyle, forcing her into a swim-off with two other competitors for the sixteenth and final spot in the 50-mter semifinals.

Kara Lynn is Co-Staring in upcoming documentary “Touch The Wall” with Missy Franklin. 

Adam is an avid athlete and outdoor enthusiast, who has been swimming since the age of seven. Adam's hobbies include mountain biking, hiking, water polo, and teaching swimming. Adam's passion for teaching swimming started many years ago during his first summer of coaching a summer-league swim team. Since then he has developed an appreciation for the technique involved in good swimming and has been coaching with SwimLabs since 2007. He works with learn-to-swim swimmers of all ages and has an extensive background working with competitive age-group swimmers and triathletes.

Jonathan started swimming at six months old, and has been in the water ever since! As soon as he was able, he started to swim for his local summer club team, the Berkeley Bullfrogs in Denver. In high school, he swam at George Washington, before moving on to Ripon College, where he helped break eight school records. Jonathan has worked at SwimLabs since 2008, during which time he has also functioned as the editor of the Colorado Masters Swimming Association Mastersplash, and has contributed published articles to both Competitor Magazine and Triathlete Magazine. Jonathan says, “One of the most rewarding aspects of this job for me is helping people find the joy that swimming has always brought me in my life. I love working with all different types of people of different age and skill levels and helping them learn to swim better or faster!”

Sara grew up in Los Altos California, where she started swimming competitively at age six. She started swimming in summer league, and quickly pursued year round competition. Having played other sports as well, but loving the water, she took to water polo instantly. Sara excelled at polo and not only played for the boys varsity team in high school, but received a scholarship to play at top ranked Division 1 team, San Diego State. There she received All American honors and set the goal scoring record. Pursuing her love for water after college Sara was an ocean lifeguard and coached high school swimming and water polo teams. Sara then returned to the college level where she was the Assistant Women’s Water Polo Coach at San Diego State. While enjoying her dream job, and surfing the days away with her husband…the arrival of their first child meant a rude awakening to the California cost of living. Finding refuge in Littleton, CO in 2009, they are enjoying raising their two kids in the Colorado lifestyle. While her heart is in the ocean, she enjoys what the Wild West has to offer!

Kayla has loved being in the water since she accidentally fell into a pool at two years old. After that, her parents put her into swim lessons and the rest is history. Kayla swam on the Holly Park Sharks summer league team and at Cherry Creek High School on the Junior Varsity team. Since graduating from Cherry Creek in 2008, and from Colorado State University in 2012, with a B.A. in Journalism, she has coached for the Holly Park Sharks for four years and has worked for SwimLabs since 2010. Her favorite stroke to swim and teach is breaststroke! She also works part-time for Fox 31 News as a production assistant. Kayla loves teaching swim lessons and seeing huge improvements in each of her client’s swimming!
Scott was in the water quite young…in fact, before he can even remember…(there’s photographic evidence of this!). Competitive swimming became a passion for him throughout his early years while swimming on the Gators Swim Team in Gilroy, CA, where he grew up. His swim coaching and instruction experience developed further when he began taking on students - children, and adults - for a swim school he developed out of his back yard. This teaching and training continued throughout high school. During his college years, Scott attended and swam for Whitworth University, gaining a solid understanding of efficient stroke technique and diagnostics. After graduating with a BA in biology, he sought to continue doing what he loved: swimming and training other swimmers. Soon thereafter, Scott was racing open water and triathlon; as well as training open water swimmers and triathletes ranging from the novice to professional athlete. After recently being married, Scott and his wife (both competitive triathletes) are enjoying living in awesome Colorado!
Amy is a recent college graduate who loves children and swimming. She has been swimming since she was seven years old for a neighborhood swim team as well as various club teams. She went on the swim for four years at Arapahoe High School and then for one year at college. Amy has several years of coaching experience with all ages. She graduated from Azusa Pacific University with a degree in Elementary Education and is working on her Master’s Degree in Teaching at Metropolitan State University in Denver. Growing up in Colorado, Amy developed a passion for swimming and loves helping others discover the benefits of such a fun sport!

At a very young age I was known as the little fish. Ever since I can remember I have loved to be in the pool. I started competitive swimming for MACS at seven and haven’t looked back. I also swam on my high school team at Smoky Hill. During high school I started instructing and fell in love with this whole other side to swimming. I love being an instructor and investing in my students swimming careers and watching them progress.

Since infancy, Kellen has been drawn to the water. Be it a lake, ocean, river, or pool, no body of water would go undisturbed while he was near. Because of this, his parent's placed a strong emphasis on water safety and teaching him to become a competent swimmer at an early age. By 18 months he was kicking and learning to swim on his own (under the watchful eye of his mother, of course). At six years old, Kellen began swimming for a competitive team in San Diego and upon moving to Colorado at age 12, started swimming for Aces swim club until taking a hiatus during his time at CU Boulder. After graduating, Kellen again began swimming with a Master's club team in Denver. Furthering his experience in open water swimming, Kellen spent extensive time training in hydrographic reconnaissance and long-distance ocean swims during his time in the Navy. Swimming has and always will remain an extremely important and valuable skill set for Kellen and one he enjoys teaching and passing on to our young swimmers here at SwimLabs.

Brooke is a Colorado native who grew up swimming for the Heritage Village Sea Lions, the Greenwood Tiger Sharks, and for Littleton High School. While enrolled at Littleton High School, she also played lacrosse and other sports. After High School, she attended the University of Northern Colorado in Greeley, where she studied Human Communications and Psychology. Brooke has been with SwimLabs since January of 2007, side by side with owner and father, Michael Mann. She oversees all employees, schedules, and is continuously aiding in SwimLabs rapid growth. Although she does not swim competitively any longer, Brooke is very active with crossfit and she completed her first marathon in May 2012.

Like many of the swimmers here, Stephanie got into competitive swimming as the next step from loving her swim lessons at the age of nine. A water baby from early on, it wasn't long before she and her sisters were at swim meets every other weekend with their parents timing behind the blocks. Stephanie worked hard for her modest success; a Colorado High School State Qualifier for three years for Smoky Hill High School in the 100 butterfly and 200 IM, and a Conference Champion at NCAA Division III Coe College in the 200 breaststroke. These still rank among her greatest achievements in life. Shortly after graduating college, she started the Piranhas in the North Castle Pines neighborhood and has been on the pool deck or in the water teaching swimmers for the last 13 years. She gets great joy out of sharing her passion for this sport and loves all the amazing families she has been blessed to work with. She loves working for SwimLabs and thinks they have a great balanced approach with technology and fun!
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