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Boilermaker Aquatics Coaching Staff
Coaching Staff

Chad Dillon

Head Coach

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Lead Senior Black

Chad comes to Boilermaker Aquatics with an eager heart to guide the team and coaching staff. In 2008, his coaching career began with the opportunity to coach some of the youngest athletes.

With a growing enthusiasm for coaching swimming and young people, Chad moved back to Noblesville, Indiana to coach the club from which he graduated. For a year, he coached with every age group.

In the Summer of 2012, Chad had the chance to join the staff of Carmel Swim Club as an assistant coach and assistant to the aquatics director. Both positions presented different responsibilities but equal learning opportunities, and the next year and a half included many hours of coaching experience with a lot of age group athletes, delving into a highly structured dryland program, and further growth as a professional coach. 

In 2014, Chad got his first opportunity to lead a swim club with the Sioux Falls Seals in Sioux Falls, South Dakota. A different club, but it presented the same opportunity to work with great people and athletes as well as an incredibly experienced staff. That time period for Chad focused on establishing a dryland program and building an environment where competitive swimmers could take pride in their work and perform at the highest level.
With these many years and experiences, Chad also swam competitively for 11 years of his young life. Those years began with a Summer League team in Fort Wayne, Indiana, and finished when he graduated high school in Noblesville. All the teams he spent time with provided the chance to learn from and work with thousands of teammates, competitors, and coaches.
His enthusiasm continues to grow for teaching young people, and at the core of Chad's focus is to teach the benefits of a team's pursuit towards excellence while maintaining a balance of fun and performance.
Service to the Swimming Community:
  • 2019-Present Region Representative for Indiana Swimming
  • 2018 Indiana Age Group Development Camp, Head Coach
  • 2018 Mid-States, Assistant Coach Team Indiana
  • 2017 Age Group Zones, Assistant Coach Team Indiana
  • 2017 Mid-States, Assistant to Team Indiana
  • 2016 All-Stars, Assistant Coach Team South Dakota
  • 2015 All-Stars, Assistant Coach Team South Dakota
  • 2013 Mid-States, Assistant to Team Indiana

Alex Jerden

Head Age Group Coach

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Lead Age Group Black

Joining BA this summer of 2019 from his most recent career stop in Austin, Texas is Coach Alex Jerden. Alex comes to us for his 11th year of competitive swim coaching, including a five-year stint with teams in Bloomington and a four-year run with Franklin Community. 

Alex most recently completed 13 months with the University of Texas Men’s Swimming program under legendary coach Eddie Reese. En route to their second place finish at NCAAs, he worked with all groups, played six-square regularly with the guys, shared recruiting duties, and contributed to the recent changes the Longhorns have made in the weight room. He will tell you it was an experience like no other, having had the opportunity to work with and learn from current and former Olympians, National Team members, and Hall of Fame coaches. 

Prior to Texas, Alex served as the head age group coach, senior assistant, and high school assistant at Franklin Community from 2014-2018 under 2-time Indiana Coach of the Year, Zach DeWitt. During his time at Franklin, Alex helped to restructure the age group program for long-term growth, worked to implement the GAIN dryland program, and was a two-time Indiana Age Group Coach of the Year Nominee. As an assistant to the high school teams, the Grizzly Cubs made an unprecedented rise during his tenure; the girls going from a non-scoring team at state to 4th in 2018, while the boys went from 13th to second in the same time. Alex helped to coach 6 All-Americans, and 5 All-American relays. 

Alex also had the pleasure of swimming for and coaching with Dave Tanner, a masterful, recently retired coach in Bloomington, Indiana. Dave was Alex’s inspiration to study exercise science at Purdue, and to pursue a career in coaching in order to inspire others. He loves the sport of swimming and believes that a passion for swimming is a consequence of great efforts and pursuit of excellence on a daily basis. 

Outside of swimming, Alex enjoys his two dogs, Scotty and Watson, weight training, reading, podcasts, and learning about stock trading. He also collects 2$ bills. 

Chris Klinge

Lead Age Group Coach

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Lead Enterprise 1 and Enterprise 2

Chris has been in the West Lafayette community for a wonderful collection of years. Her initial stay was as a student and athlete at Purdue University. She competed on the Women's Swim Team for 4 years, and upon conclusion of her 4th year of eligibility, she began coaching with Coach Jim Sharp at Jefferson High School. After coaching stints in California, Montana, and Ohio, Chris' family made the move back to West Lafayette, and she started coaching with Boilermaker Aquatics in 2009. Ten years later, Chris is a consistent and comforting personality on the coaching staff, and her family has 3 athletes on the team. Coach Chris' husband John Klinge is the Head Coach of Women's Swimming and Diving at Purdue University.

Patrick Schultheiss

Assistant Senior Coach

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Lead High School Prep and Senior Gold

Patrick has been in the Lafayette area for 20 years. He grew up in Monticello, went to Twin Lakes High School and Purdue University. He now resides in West Lafayette. He is currently and elementary physical education teacher in the Tippecanoe School Corporation. 

Patrick started his swimming career in Monticello when he was 8 years old and continued swimming through high school with Twin Lakes. While at Purdue, his athletic career shifted away from swimming and onto rowing where he competed in Purdue's top boat for 3 years.

While at Purdue, he also competed in triathlons and road cycling.

He started his coaching career in Monticello with the Monticello Strokers Swim Team, Twin Lakes High School, and Boilermaker Aquatics. For the last 4 years, Patrick has assisted Coach Beth Brown in leading the Harrison High School Boys Swim Team consistent strong finishes in their conference and Sectional/State Tournament.

Patience Smith

Lead and Assistant Age Group Coach

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Lead Foundations

Elizabeth Ann Brown

Assistant Coach

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Bailey Ryan Pyle

Co-Lead Age Group Coach

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So young An

Assistant Age Group Coach

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Emily Hope Converse

Assistant Coach

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Patrick Cavanaugh

Co-Lead Age Group Coach

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Jessica Avery Karns

Assistant Age Group Coach

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Avery Karns is thrilled to be a new Enterprise Coach for Boilermaker Aquatics. Around 10 years old she began swimming for Longhorn Aquatics at the University of Texas at Austin. She had the great privilege of working with some of the top coaches and athletes the sport had to offer at the time. Whitney Hedgepeth and occasionally 4-Time Olympian Jill Sterkel were among them.

By the time she was 13 years old Avery was swimming on the National level team at Longhorn Aquatics. She later joined the Circle C Ranch Swim Team under the coaching of Randy Reese a former U.S. Olympic Coach. While at Circle C Ranch she also had the privilege of swimming alongside Olympic swimmers like Josh Davis, Scott Span Jr., Christian Schurr, Jeremy Knowles, and many more.

During her senior year of high school she won the first State Swimming Championship in Bowie High school’s history. They set State records for the 400M Freestyle relay and 400M Medley relay of a 5A high school.

While attending Texas A&M University she played the Water Polo team for 2 years. After completing her B.S. in Biomedical Science at Texas A&M in 2003, Avery headed off to Parker University in Dallas, TX to pursue her Doctor of Chiropractic degree. 

It was at Parker where Avery met her husband, Tyler Karns. They have 3 awesome kids Sebastian, Malachi, and Evangeline.

While on the Parker Chiro Swim Team they won 3 consecutive "International" Championships among the American and Canadian Chiropractic Schools. She completed her Doctor of Chiropractic in 2007 and is currently practicing Chiropractic in Indiana.

Coach Avery believes certain things are key to a successful swimmer and team: 

  • Good character/sportsmanship
  • Work ethic
  • Realistic Goal setting
  • Positive self-outlook

Avery has coached teams in Texas, Michigan, Wyoming, and now Indiana!