NOVA’s full-time coaching staff is nationally recognized. Each professional coach has the experience and competence needed to guide NOVA swimmers to reach their full potential.
A focus on quality of instruction over quantity of laps means your child benefits from an environment where goals are established, and successes are celebrated in a safe and nurturing environment. Practices focus on age-appropriate, targeted training, designed to ensure that swimmers learn the proper technique. Advancement happens when the right combination of skill, age and commitment come together.
Contact one of our coaches by clicking on a link below.
A Richmond-area native, David graduated from Virginia Commonwealth University with a degree in Health and Physical education. While in college, he was both a swimmer and diver.
Previously a health and physical education teacher at St Michael’s School, David joined NOVA in 1998 on a part time basis while working with the Collegiate School swim team and took over the Age group program fulltime in 1999.
Having coached summer league since 1983 and U.S. swimming since 1986, he brings almost 40 years experience to the deck. Over the years David has been involved with numerous summer league and US teams in the Richmond area producing many State champions, State record holders, National top 10 swimmers, several National Age group record breaking swimmers and relay teams along with Jr National and Olympic Trial qualifiers. David also has been recognized by his peers being voted the Virginia Age Group Coach of the Year 5 consecutive years (2001 – 2006) and in 2016. He was also a top 10 finalist for the Fitter & Faster / American Swim Coaches Association Age Group Coach of the year in 2016.
David has served as the lead coach for numerous groups in both the age group and senior programs throughout his time at NOVA. He is currently the lead coach for the Senior Development Silver and Age Group Development Gold groups in the afternoons and evenings.
He and his wife Jennifer, have two sons and a daughter, Quinn, Xander and Hayley. Xander currently swims with the Senior Elite group and enjoys teaching lessons for NOVA. Hayley swam for NOVA from age 7 – 13 and has since been participating in her high school marching band and pursuing her graphic art skills. Quinn swam for NOVA from age 8 through his high school years and recently graduated from Georgia Tech with an undergraduate and master’s degree in Aerospace Engineerin
Matt first began as a swimmer with Nova in 2008 starting with Senior Development Silver and working his way up to Senior Gold. He grew a love for the sport and after teaching a few lessons in 2011 he was hooked. He has gone on to work with every level of swimmer from ‘never been in the water’ to VA state & NCSA Age Group Champions.
“No matter where I’ve worked, my favorite part of coaching has been helping people find a love and appreciation for the ‘process’ of improvement. That’s a skill you can take anywhere. Swimming taught me a lot in that regard and being able to now guide others through those lessons is where I find my passion. Plus, who doesn’t enjoy some fast swimming”
Lead Age Group Gold
Assists Age Group Development Gold
MC joined the coaching staff in 2010. Most recently, MC won the ASCA Top 50 Age Group Coach of the year award in 2022! She brings experience and enthusiasm to our already superb coaching staff. MC leads AGG and assists with AGDG.
Coach MC Banks has strong roots in Virginia Swimming so she is familiar with NOVA and even quite familiar with some of your children through her work with the Virginia Zones teams. Most recently, MC served as the Head Age Group Coach at SMAC Swimming in Waynesboro, VA. During her tenure there, MC qualified multiple athletes for the Virginia Swimming Zone Team, and led the way in rebuilding and restructuring the age group program. She was also instrumental in the development and planning of the senior group which turned out 8 Virginia Swimming championships, 8 short-course YMCA National qualifiers, and multiple National Age Group Top 16 rankings.
Prior to her stint at SMAC, MC was the head coach at Central Virginia Aquatics (CVA) in Charlottesville. While there, her men’s team was named Virginia Swimming’s Short Course small team champions twice, and the Long Course Short Course small team champions once. MC coached multiple Junior National and US Open Qualifiers, as well as placing athletes in the National Age Group Top 16.
Before her time in Charlottesville, Coach Thomas was the Head Age Group coach at SWAT (now H20kies) in Blacksburg, VA for 3 years. She also has extensive summer league coaching experience in both the Charlottesville and Blacksburg areas, and in her hometown of Baltimore, MD.
MC is a graduate of Virginia Tech, where she played varsity lacrosse, and interned as a strength and conditioning coach. MC and her husband Kenny welcomed daughter Lawson in the spring of 2022.
Carter was born and raised in Henrico’s West End and is a NOVA alum. She was an age group swimmer when the first pool was built and swam for NOVA for 8 years. Carter also swam for 12 years in the GRAL for the TVRA Typhoons. She began her coaching career at TVRA, leading the team to their first-ever undefeated season and several top 5 finishes at Champs. After graduating from Virginia Tech with a degree in Elementary Education, Carter put her degree to work in an unexpected way: her love of swimming led her to begin coaching in the Northern Virginia area. She started with York Swim Club in 2012, then moved to Arlington Aquatic Club, where she lead several Age Group programs from 2015-2022. During her stint as an age group coach at AAC, she coached countless PVS Junior Olympic qualifiers and multiple NCSA Age Group qualifiers. While assisting with AAC’s Senior Prep group, she also coached a handful of Eastern Zone Sectionals and NCSA Junior National Qualifiers. Carter also spent her summers as the Head Coach at Washington Golf & Country Club in Arlington, helping to lead the team to an impressive string of eight consecutive undefeated seasons and league championships.
Carter and her husband James have a 12 year-old son, Wade. In her free time, she enjoys reading, exercising and hanging out with her family and their dog; she also delights in watching her son play basketball and lacrosse. Her love of swimming began at NOVA and she is so excited to be HOME!
Michael is the assistant coach for Senior Development Bronze.
Anita has been on the NOVA coaching staff since 2018 and currently leads Age Group Bronze, Age Group Development Bronze and assists Novice Gold. She grew up in Western Massachusetts and started competitively swimming at age 5. A national qualifier as an age group swimmer, she continued her swimming career at LSU as a scholarship athlete from 1985-1989. She achieved NCAA All-American status and earned a degree in Criminal Justice. Much of her working history, prior to having children, has been in adult corrections as a probation officer and prison counselor.
Since moving to the Richmond area in 2012, she served as an assistant coach at the Midlothian YMCA’s year-round program from 2013-2016 and as head coach for their JRAC summer league program in 2014 and 2015. She was the head coach for Walton Park, in JRAC, for 2 summers and also coached swim clinics for the Country Club of Virginia and NOVA.
She and her husband Jeff have 3 children who joined NOVA in 2015, Shannah, age 18, Carleigh, 17, and Cooper, 14. Her daughter, Shannah, will attend and swim for the University of West Florida in the fall of 2022.
Anita’s summation of her coaching philosophy:
“As a coach, I strive to instill correct stroke technique and to get kids excited to practice and compete. I believe the key to a successful swimmer is to have fun while developing a confident competitor.”
Megan Garland joined the NOVA coaching staff in September 2017 after coaching in Florida for 7 years. Garland has been lead and assistant coach to several groups in her time at NOVA including AGDS, AGB, AGG, SDS, SDG, Senior Bronze, Senior Silver, and Senior Elite. She also helped with lessons and spring clinics. She has produced and helped produce multiple Virginia Swimming Age Group Champions, Senior Champions, NCSA Junior National qualifiers, USA Junior National and US National qualifiers. In addition to her coaching duties Garland runs NOVA’s social media. Prior to joining the NOVA staff, Garland was the assistant coach at Florida Southern College and the head coach of Lakeland Area Swimming. While there she helped coach the men to third and fourth place finishes at the 2016 and 2017 NCAA Division II Men’s National Championships, and the women to fifteenth and thirty-seventh place finishes at the Women’s Championships. She was also a key component in the Moccasins’ double Sunshine State Conference Championship in 2016, with the men winning their fourth straight SSC title, and the women winning their first. She assisted in the coaching of 62 Division II National Championship All Americans, and 31 Honorable Mention All Amerians, and 2 National Championship Relays. Garland produced multiple Florida Age Group Champs qualifiers, Senior Champs qualifiers, Sectional Qualifiers, and Junior National qualifiers. She also assisted in the coaching of Senior National and US Open qualifiers, and a 2016 Honduras Olympian. She was a 4-year letter winner at the University of Tampa from the fall of 2005 through the spring of 2009, and earned All-American honors during two of those seasons. She was later a member of the coaching staff at Nova Southeastern University from January of 2010 through August of 2011, and helped the Sharks win the inaugural SSC Men’s Championship in her second season there. Garland spent five years with the South Florida Aquatic Club in Pembroke Pines where she was an assistant swim coach for various age groups, senior athletes, and adults. During that same time she also served as the head swimming and diving coach at Archbishop Edward McCarthy High School from September of 2011 through April of 2014, was a member of the Florida Gold Coast Southern Zone coaching staff in 2012, and a Florida Gold Coast All-Star Open Water coach from 2012-14. Garland produced her first Junior National qualifier here, and assisted with the coaching of the Pro group that included a four-time Jamaican Olympian. She also was an assistant coach at a swim camp for the Jamaican National team. Garland’s coaching career began in August of 2009 following her graduation from the University of Tampa. Returning home to her native Aurora, Illinois, Garland was the assistant varsity coach and head JV coach of the girls’ team at the Illinois Mathematics and Science Academy. As a collegiate swimmer, Garland helped Tampa to four top-15 finishes at the NCAA Division II National Finals. She earned honorable mention All-American status as a member of the Spartans’ 200-yard freestyle relay team, and was an All-American in the 800-freestyle relay where she helped them set the school record for that event in 2009. As a senior captain that year, Garland qualified for the National Finals in six events and helped lead the Spartans to the Bluegrass Mountain Conference championship.
Wyatt was first introduced to swimming when he joined the Church Run Rockets summer league team where Coach Drew was one of his first coaches. He joined NOVA shortly thereafter, and swam year round until he attended Benedictine High School and fell in love with track and field. He graduated from The College of William & Mary with a B.S. in Mathematics and a M.A.Ed. in Secondary Education with a concentration in Secondary Mathematics. He then taught eighth grade math in Henrico County for two years before joining the NOVA staff full time.
Wyatt began his swim coaching career with the Church Run Rockets, working with the team for ten seasons, six of which he was the head coach. While teaching, he was the head coach for Deep Run High School Swimming for two seasons. Wyatt started at NOVA in the fall of 2017. He has since worked with every level of the program, from teaching lessons to being a coach on deck at Olympic trials in 2021. Currently, he is the lead coach for Senior Silver and is a part of the facility management team.
Mike Julian joined NOVA in 2016 after 15 years of coaching at Poseidon Swimming, leading the Age Group program to numerous national, state, and local awards and rankings. He has coached numerous NCSA qualifiers and state record holders both at Poseidon and now with NOVA. In the 6 years as the lead Senior Development Gold coach, Mike Julian has helped the 13-14 set numerous team records, state records including 2 National Age Group relay records. During his time with NOVA Mike was voted Age Group coach of the year in 2017-2018.
Mike swam four years at East Carolina University (1996-2000), finishing his swimming career as one of the most successful all around swimmers in ECU history by landing on the top 10 list in 5 different events. He was also elected by his teammates as a team captain in his junior and senior years, and while at ECU he received his Bachelor’s degree in Health and Physical Education. After completing his Bachelor’s degree he attended VCU where he completed his Master’s Degree in Sports Management with a concentration is Sports Leadership. Prior to swimming in college while in high school, he was a Junior National level swimmer for QDD in Stafford, VA. He began coaching for Greenville Swim Club in Greenville, NC in 2000 after graduation.
Mike and his wife, Julie, were married in 2003 and have four sons, Bryant (16), Brady (14), and twins Erik and Carson (12). In their spare time, the active family enjoys participating in triathlons, hiking, golf, as well as watching the many activities their sons compete in.
Coach Kai joins the NOVA staff after almost a decade of coaching in JRAC. He swam with NOVA for a couple of years after Micheal Phelps lit up the swimming world in 2008. In high school, he represented Douglas Freeman and Glen Allen in States. Now attending Virginia Commonwealth University in pursuit of a Mechanical Engineering degree, Kai has been missing the pool and is excited to carry on his coaching career alongside some of the best in the Nation.
Masters Coach, Pace Man and Pool Guy
Mark started coaching clinics his freshman year at VCU in 1974. In 1975, he started his first summer league coaching job at Southhampton as an assistant coach. He then coached Ginter Park for three years and then back to Southampton for three more – those were his early summer league coaching jobs. He didn’t coach summer league again until the late 1990s when he coached Kings Charter for a couple of years.
His US Swimming coaching career started with helping to coach the CAC Rams at VCU while in college. When he graduated, he landed a job with the Tritons of Petersburg as an assistant under Dudley Duncan and with a young first-year coach named Diane Cayce! He then coached for the CAC Rams again for a couple of years with Bob Johnson. Then, he went to work for BRAC at Briarwood (now ACAC) for Doug Fonder. He became Head Coach there in 1988 – the same year his son Ian was born! Poseidon Swimming was formed and he coached for them for several years before retiring for a few years to be at home more with his young children.
In the mid-nineties he got back into coaching, first with TRAC and Tony Barney, and then for many years with the Richmond Racers with Mike Hodges. He started helping in the morning with Leigh Robbins in the early 2000s, and his position has developed over the years.
Mark has been involved with NOVA for 17 years, and with Masters swimming for 15 years. Mark is a certified level 4 US Swimming coach. In 2012, he won USMS’ Kerry O’Brien Coaching award, which is given in recognition of coaches who have done a great job in building strong USMS membership in local communities. He has contributed regularly to the USMS magazine, Swimmer.
Coach Tim is a native of the Tidewater Peninsula area, and comes to NOVA with a wealth of coaching experience. Tim served as Head Age Group Coach for South Eastern Virginia Aquatics from 2009 to 2015 and again in 2018. During this time, he coached 25+ state champions, multiple state record holders and National Top 10 rankings. His work at SEVA helped the team double in size and move from 259th to 153rd in the virtual club rankings. Tim was instrumental in helping SEVA win its first Regional Championship in the team’s history as well as finishing 2nd at Long Course Age Group Champs in 2011. Tim was consistently selected to the VA Swimming Zones Coaching staff. Earning the respect of his coaching peers, Tim was awarded VA Swimming’s Age Group Coach of the Year Award in 2009-2010 and again in 2010-2011.
Prior to his tenure with SEVA, Coach Tim worked with all levels at Typhoon Aquatics and the Coast Guard Blue Dolphins. In addition to his work at the USA Swimming level, Tim has coached high school and summer league swim teams.
From 2019-2022, Tim served as a police officer in Newport News and James City County. Tim enjoys playing golf, spending time with friends and family and his two dogs, Ranger and Tanner
Coach Sean brings to the NOVA staff over a decade of head coaching experience from the YMCA of Greater Richmond. As a swimmer, Sean specialized in the distance freestyle. As a coach Sean enjoys working with all ages of swimmers across all experience levels. Sean’s coaching philosophy revolves around perfecting technique and having the patience for a payoff at the end of a training cycle.
Coach Luke has been at NOVA since 1999, swimming on the team from Novice Silver all the way through Senior Gold. He qualified for and attended meets including Age Group Champs, Senior Champs, Eastern Zones, NCSA Junior Nationals, and more. Luke began teaching lessons in 2009 and has worked at NOVA ever since. He attended Virginia Commonwealth University, graduating with two bachelor degrees in Spanish and French, as well as a minor in Arabic and Middle Eastern Studies. While in college, Luke continued to earn leadership in the expanding lessons program, as well as joining Age Group Silver as a coach in 2014.
After graduating from college in 2015, Luke became a full time coach at NOVA and expanded his experience to include coaching 10 different swim team groups in addition to his experience with the swim lessons program. He has led Age Group Silver since 2017. Luke’s love for swimming never quite faded as he jumped back in the pool as a masters swimmer for several years after college, qualifying for Senior Nationals and Masters Nationals, winning an event at Senior Champs, and even leading NOVA relays to victory. Now, Luke has transitioned into competitive weightlifting, adding a fundamental knowledge of strength and conditioning to his repertoire.
Laurel comes to NOVA with over 10 years of coaching experience in the Richmond area, including time as Head Coach at the Dolphin Club. During her time at Dolphin Club she coached all ages and ability levels in the program.
Laurel is a graduate of Penn State with a degree in Global Communications and Leadership. We ARE! She loves watching football, soccer, and time spent with her 15 year old daughter, Keira. Keira is a member of the NOVA program currently swimming in the Senior Gold group.
A 1993 graduate of Wright State University, Mike earned a Bachelor’s Degree in History and was a 3-year member of the Raiders swim team.
After Wright State, Mike started his coaching career at Washington Township Recreation Center in Centerville, Ohio where he helped grow a team of approximately 40 athletes in 1993 into a team of 220 athletes and a perennial state age group powerhouse through 1999. From 1999-2017, Mike coached at the storied Cincinnati Marlins in many different roles. In roles ranging from Head Age Group Coach to Associate Head Coach, Mike was involved in all facets of the team, playing a key role in their recognition as a Gold Medal Club. From the Marlins, Mike moved to Charlottesville, Virginia, in the spring of 2017 having been hired as the Head Coach of CYAC (rebranded Cavalier Aquatics in 2020). While in Charlottesville, Mike helped develop both a premier age group and national team and coached Charlottesville’s first club swimmer to an Olympic Trials cut. Coaching accomplishments include 1996 Age Group Coach of the Year in Ohio, 10+ Ohio Age Group State Team Championships, a US Junior National Team title, approximately 10 NAG Record’s broken (both individual and relay), and a 3rd place team finish nationally in spring of 2021 at Y Festival (formerly known as Y Nationals).
Mike will be joined in Richmond by his wife Leslie (CGBD and UNC Grad, former ACC Swimmer of the Year) and their two children, Olivia (14) and Luke (11) – both swimmers! Mike is an avid Cincinnati sports fan (Bengals, Reds, Bearcats) and enjoys spending time with his family when not coaching.
Stephanie brings a wealth of swimming experience to the NOVA staff. A familiar figure around the Virginia Swimming scene, she was first head developmental coach, then head age group coach for the Coast Guard Blue Dolphins. Pay no attention to the various T-shirts she wears celebrating other universities, Stephanie attended UNC-Wilmington and graduated with a degree in biology. She continued her education at Christopher Newport, completing an elementary education degree. She and her husband James have four children, Abigail, Matthew, Jacob, and Noah. After the birth of their third child, she took a break from coaching. The Wolfle family relocated to Richmond fall of 2011 and we have benefited from Stephanie’s knowledge since then. Stephanie will be the lead coach for the Age Group Development Bronze Group.
The SwimNOVA lessons program is managed by a staff of knowledgeable professionals who are dedicated to teaching the correct level of swim instruction for each child. All instructors are lifeguard certified and receive extensive training and shadowing experience before leading a class. For information not found on the website, or if you have questions, please contact (804)754-3401 (ext.1).
Leslie oversees the entire NOVA lessons program, including curriculum development, schedule coordination, training, volunteer acquisition, and outreach initiatives.
Leslie (Ramsey) Wenert. Leslie joined NOVA in the fall of 2021. Leslie grew up in Yorktown, Virginia and swam for the Coast Guard Blue Dolphins (CGBD) club team. She was Virginia Swimming’s dominant female swimmer during her time as an age group swimmer in Virginia.
Her college career at UNC was equally stellar. A 1995 graduate from Chapel Hill, Leslie was a team captain, NCAA All-American in freestyle & butterfly events, and ACC Swimmer of the Year in 1994. In 1996, she was a semi-finalist in the 200M Butterfly at the USA Swimming Olympic Trials. During her coaching career, Leslie was an assistant coach at the University of Kentucky, Head Coach at Wittenberg University, club coach at Wildcat Aquatics, Cincinnati Marlins, and Cavalier Aquatics/CYAC.
Leslie is married to NOVA coach Mike Wenert and they have two children, Olivia and Luke, both NOVA swimmers.
Leslie brings over 30 years of teaching/swim coaching experience and has worked with all levels of swimmers. She has a BA degree in Exercise Science with a minor in Biology from UNC-Chapel Hill and a Masters degree in Sports Management with BA in business from the University of Kentucky. Her goal is to have her love and passion for the sport of swimming transfer over to all of her swimmers.
Bridget manages the details for NOVA’s extensive lessons program, including registrations and payments. She can answer questions about the various levels in the pro-
gram and availability.
For all questions related to administrative aspects of the club, such as registration, team billing and payment, and volunteering, please contact the Business Office at (804) 750-3401 (ext.2) or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Lori Hopewell is NOVA’s business office manager. She handles team registrations, swim meets, volunteers, fundraising administration and billing.
Lynley is responsible for NOVA’s accounting and finance functions, including billing, accounts payable and receivable, fundraising tracking, and financial reporting.
Julie manages all of NOVA’s extensive team travel needs, including transportation, hotels, and chaperones. Julie also handles special
events and assists with fundraising and marketing.
Drew oversees the operations of both Aquatics Centers and rentals of the facilities. He can be reached at( 804) 754-3401 (Ext.6)
Cabell started swimming for Ridgetop in 1999 under Dave Holland until 2009. In the off season, she was a NOVA swimmer. After high school, Cabell attended Sweet Briar College, and was a member of the Vixen swim team.Cabell has been working at Nova Aquatics since 2015, holding a variety of positions including lessons instructor, coach, clinics instructor, and is responsible for the training and staffing of lifeguards. In 2019 she also began coaching th She is also the head coach of Hermitage High School swim team.
Denise manages the operations of NOVA’s on-site, full-service swim shop. She is responsible for staffing (including shop volunteers), buying, promotions, and all other day-to-day aspects of shop operations at both the Gayton and Regency locations.
Mary Anne manages team sales for NOVA’s in house store, the Virginia Swim Shop. Questions about team outfitting for summer league teams, year-round swim clubs and high school teams/clubs can be directed to her. She can also help with questions about store merchandise and services.
Kirby Pierce, Maria Provenzo, Vicki Dacey, Amanda Schmidt, Rhonda Underwood, and Katie Horst
Kirby, Rhonda, and Amanda work part-time in the shop to help swimmers with suit and equipment purchases, while focusing on providing great customer service. Maria, Vicki, and Katie work in our team sales area to serve summer league teams and year-round swim clubs like the YMCA.