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Coaches & Directors

HTAC is fortunate to have one of the largest, most highly experienced and educated coaching staffs in Canada! Our coaches have a strong history in competitive swimming and hold a multitude of coaching certifications.

The entire HTAC coaching staff aspires to be professional, and provided a positive learning and training environment. Our coaches supply a structured and progressive training system that is appropriate for the athlete’s age and ability level, and adheres to the Canadian Sport for Life Long- Term Athlete Development Model.

Important skills such as working as a team, positive mental skills and visualization, as well as goal setting and striving for improved performance are emphasized in order to achieve common goals.

Chris Stone

Head Coach

Born and raised in Nova Scotia, Chris attended Dalhousie University earning a degree in Political Science and History. During his university studies he began coaching with the Dartmouth Crusaders for several seasons before taking a head coach position in Smithers, BC. Following three years in Smithers, Chris returned to Nova Scotia and taking the role of head coach with the Wolfville Tritons in 2006 and resurrecting the Acadia Axemen and Axewomen Swim programs in the fall of 2009. After several seasons with both programs, Chris took the head coaching position with the Fort McMurray Mantas in 2014 before returning to Nova Scotia . Enterihg his third year as HTAC head coach, Chris has been attended to 2016 Youth Relay Intiative, 2017 Junior Relay Intitative, is a member of the of the 2016 Seleet Coach Group and was an apprentice caoch at the 2016 Junior PanPacific Swimming Championships.

During Chris’ time with the various clubs he has coached, he has produced numerous provincial records and medalists at all levels of competition (East Coast, Canadian Age Group Champs, Eastern Canadian Champs, Canada Cup and Canadian Interuniversity Sport). He believes success can come in many definitions, and that the day to day environment created by the swimmers can help cultivate an attitude and cohesiveness that will carry through to the competition environment.

Chris will be the first to admit he has a loud presence on deck (attributed to his inability to whistle), and that every member of the club is responsible for helping to create an atmosphere of excellence where everyone can reach their highest level of personal excellence on a daily basis.


Ian Cunningham

Assistant Head Coach

After growing up in a suburb of Toronto Ian attended the University of Western Ontario, earning a degree in Kinesiology. Following school he began his coaching career at Etobicoke Swimming, where he spent many successful seasons before relocating to Dartmouth, where he still lives.

During his 5 seasons in Nova Scotia, Ian's swimmers have produced more than 20 individual East Coast gold medals as well as 12 new Provincial records.  Many of his swimmers have achieved success at the Canadian Age Group Championships, bringing home medals from both the pool and open water competitions.   He has been awarded the Development Coach of the Year for 2014 and 2017 as well as being Head Coach for the Swim Nova Scotia Tour team to Maine. Ian believes in creating a strong and positive training environment which can help each individual swimmer strive to reach their goals. 

Ian is best known for the energy he brings to the pool deck and his easy going nature.  His goal is to produce well rounded, technically proficient athletes who can move on to compete successfully at the National level and beyond.

Riccardo Massiero

Age Group Coach

Joining us last year from Italy via the USA, Riccardo has been coaching for over 15 years and brings a wealth of experience and enthusiasm for the sport at its highest level.

Brian Beckwith

Grassroots Coordinator

A native to the Maritimes, Brian was the Head Coach of the Shearwater Bluefins Swim Club until 2010 when he joined HTAC, and is the President of the Nova Scotia Swim Coaches Association.  Brian is an accomplished and well known coach in Atlantic Canada, having led the 2012 Team Atlantic and 2013 Nova Scotia Canada Games Teams.  Brian is an NCCP Level III coach, and a registered massage therapist with LifeMark Physiotherapy.  He has volunteered his services with the 2005 & 2009 Nova Scotia Canada Games teams, Canadian Sport Centre Atlantic, and has been requested by name many times to attend international events as a member of Team Canada’s Integrated Support Team.  Brian plans to continue his massage and coaching education to assist all Trojans reach their highest level of performance, and ultimately represent Canada at the Olympic games

Philip Evans

Grassroots Coach

Phillip is the most recognizable and longest standing coach with HTAC mentoring our NovaTech Grassroots Coaches. Quick witted and constantly on the lookout for new technological gadgets, Phillip is always trying something new to help communicate race strategies, stroke development, and the fundamentals of swim training to all Trojan swimmers. With over 30 years experience coaching in Nova Scotia, British Columbia, and England, Phil has inspired, and shared his love of swimming with hundreds of athletes, young and old.

Mikayla Tyrell

Grassroots Coach

Mikayla is in her 5th year with the club, progressing as a coach from our youngest level to assisting with our Provincial groups. Mikayla has finished her Kinesiology degree at Dalhousie and is now working towards an Physiotherapy masters degree. Mikayla always has a smile and is interested in all the swimmers in her charge.

Natalie Williams

Grassroots Coach

Natalie is a former summer swimmer and has now been coaching with us for 3 years. In her second year at Dalhousie in Nursing, she brings a warmth to her practices and is enthusiatic to see her swimmers progress.

Alex Jenkins

Grassroots Coach

Our youngest coach on staff, Alex is also a former Trojan swimmer who is in her second year of coaching after volunteer coaching with us for 2 years. Alex is currently in Grade 11 at Citadel High School. Alex can relate to our youngest swimmers as they find their passion for the sport just as she did.

Coaching Staff