Coaches & Directors

Our  experienced coaching staff is here to support your needs. If your questions are related to workouts, meets, events, goal setting, and other swimming related needs, please contact one of the coaches.

For all questions related to administrative, such as dues, safety, or policy issues, please contact one of the board members.

Coaching Staff

Leonard Kraus

Head Coach & Senior Sharks; COO

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Coach Leonard Kraus is in his tenth year coaching the MAKOS and has been coaching competitive swimming for 29 years.  Over his first nine years the MAKOS have grown in number as well as continued to raise in the rankings at both the FLAGS & Senior State Championships as well as added an Olympic Trails Qualifier and Southern Zone Individual Champion. Coach Kraus has also been selected to coach both the LSC's All-Star and Southern Zone Teams.

Prior to the MAKOS, Coach Kraus spent 9 years as the founding head coach for Marshall University in Huntington, West Virginia.  While at Marshall, Coach Kraus had multiple NCAA division I qualifiers as well as conference champions in Conference USA and the Mid-American Conference.  Coach Kraus also led several of his international athletes to their Olympic Trail meets in their respective countries. In addition to his collegiate coaching in Huntington, Coach Kraus also served as an assistant coach for the Huntington YMCA Charleston Aquatic Team program, as well as the West Virginia Swimming LSC General Chair (two years), Age Group Chair (four years) and WV Zone Team Head Coach.

Prior to becoming the Head Coach at Marshall Coach Kraus spent 3 years at the University of Toledo and 3 years at Ball State University as the Head Assistant Coach at both programs.  During this time, Coach Kraus was able to work with numerous conference champions and NCAA qualifiers.

Coach Kraus spent the early years of his career coaching at the club level as the Head Coach for the Cardinal Community Swim Club in Muncie, Indiana.  While at Cardinal Coach Kraus led several of his athletes to the USA Junior and Senior National meets.

Coach Kraus graduated from Ball State with a Major in Sport Administration with minors in Business and Aquatics/Coaching.  While at Ball State he swam for Coach Bob Thomas and also played Water Polo. 

Coach Kraus is an American Swim Coaches Association (ASCA) Level 4 coach and continues to expand his knowledge of the sport of swimming.  Coach Kraus is a USA registered Coach and is certified in CPR, AED, First Aid and Lifeguarding.

Coach Leonard Kraus and his wife Joy Kraus have been married for 21 years and have two daughters that both swim competitively; Alena (20) who is a multiple time HS All American, Olympic Trial Qualifier and is now a sophomore swimmer at the University of Louisville and Makayla (18) who is a state and futures finalist and a senior at Gainesville High School.

Joy Kraus

Head Age Group Coach

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Coach Joy is in her tenth year coaching with the Makos and has been coaching swimming for over 22 years.  During her time with the Makos she has lead several of her swimmers to FLAGS and All Star/Zone Championship meets.

Along with her eight years as the Head Coach at HYCAT Coach Joy brings along club coaching experience from two previous teams, Greater Toledo Aquatic Club and Cardinal Community Swim Club. She also spent several summers as a camp counselor and coach at the Ball State University swim camps.

Coach Joy earned a degree in Elementary Education from Ball State University and was a swimmer for  BSU swim team.  While at BSU,  Coach Joy was a USA Swimming All American, NCAA Divison I All-American, NCAA Division I Academic All American and was an Olympic Trial Qualifier.  Her specialty events were the 50 & 100 Freestyle. Coach Joy was inducted into the Ball State University Athletic Hall of Fame in 2009 as "the Winningest Swimmer in the schools history".

Coach Joy began swimming at the age of 8 in her hometown of Midlothian, Illinois where her 1st season nick name was "lane line Joy".  She later went on to be multiple time HS scorer.

Coach Joy is a USA swimming registered coach as well as a member of the American Swim Coaches Association as a level 3 coach and Lifeguard certified.

Rob Ramirez

Individual and Small Lessons Instructor

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Coach Rob Ramirez was born in 29 Palms California, in the upper Mojave Desert.  Rob grew up in a military family traveling and living all around the United States.  As a swimmer Rob was a High School All-American, a University of Florida All-American (5-time) and a world ranked swimmer.  Coach Rob is still ranked in the top 100 all time in his 50 free!

Coach Rob has been teaching 'learn to swim' in Gainesville since 1976 and has been the Gainesville High School swim coach for the last 31 years.  Coach Rob has lead Gainesville to many city, district, regional and State Championships (Boys in 2011; Girls in 2015).  He has also been named Coach of the Year multiple times and has had numerous top 3 finishes at State and All-AMerican performers!

Rob has been employed by the Alachua County School Board for the last 35 years.  His first 14 years at A. Quinn Jones Center he was responsible for implementing a Physical Eduncation program, a first of its kind, and for the last 21 years Rob has been Dean of Students.

Rob has a history with us, it started when he helped start/merge the Boys and Girls Club team known as the Lightening into the North Florida YMCA Bolts who are now known as the (you guessed it!!!) Makos Aquatics Club of Gainesville.

Coach Rob is happily married to his lovely wife, Susan, and they have been together for 34 years. They are the proud parents of Carly and Lily.  Lily was a High School All-American (12-time) and followed her dad to swim at UF.  Carly is a Junior at UF.  She swam and was active in the Performing Arts in Gainesville.

When Coach Rob is not coaching or teaching he enjoys the outdoors.

Board of Directors

Kent Walker

President

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Joy Kraus

WebMaster

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