Eric A Seversen
Head Coach, Head Senior Coach
Born and raised in Minnesota, Eric began swimming with Team Foxjet and later NHCP. Initially thinking he was a backstroker or sprint freestyler, he later found his niche in the longer stroke and freestyle events. A former MN state record holder in the 800-meter Free, Eric earned a scholarship to the University of Wisconsin. While at Wisconsin-Madison, Eric earned degrees in Biochemistry and Genetics as well as completed additional coursework in exercise physiology.
Eric began coaching a small swim club in 1995 where he coached his first state qualifiers, champions and zones qualifiers. In 1999, Eric began coaching with Badger Aquatics Club as Head Site Coach-Middleton. During the next 3 years, he coached numerous zone qualifiers, state champs, several top 16 swims and helped lead BAC to a combined team state championship in 2000.
The opportunity to coach in Minnesota brought Coach Seversen and his family to SEMS in the spring of 2003 where he assumed the role of Head Age Group Coach. In the fall of 2004, Eric was promoted to Program Head Coach. In the years since joining the SEMS coaching staff, Eric has seen our enrollment nearly triple and our team standing rise to top 10 in Minnesota.
Eric lives in Woodbury with his wife, Gayle, and their two children, Gunnar and Maggie.
Sharon I Simpson
Mr. and Mrs. Simpson founded SEMS in 1971. Sharon became a full-time coach with SEMS in 1983 after working part time from 1971-1983. She was also the Pool Supervisor for Woodbury Community Education swimming program from 1970-1983. For ten years, she was an assistant coach for the Woodbury Girl’s Swim Team program.
Sharon became the Head Age Group Coach in 1990 and was SEMS Head Coach from the fall of 1997 to the fall of 2002. She graduated from the University of Minnesota with a Bachelor of Science Degree in Physical Education and Exercise Science in 1989. She began the SEMS Masters program in 1991. Sharon has two children, both have been team members of SEMS. She now has two grandchildren.
Luke E Money
Head Age Group Coach
Luke grew up in Fergus Falls
Minnesota and swam for both the Fergus Falls Flyers and the Fergus
Falls Otters. In high school, he was All-State during his
sophomore, junior and senior year. He was runner up in the
100 butterfly his junior and senior year.
After high school, Luke attended and
swam for St. Olaf College where he was an All-American on the 200
medley relay his sophomore year and was All-Conference his
sophomore through senior year. Luke graduated from St. Olaf with a
B.A. in History in 2011.
Prior to joining SEMS, Luke coached
the age group team in his hometown the summer of 2008. In
addition to coaching with SEMS, Luke is currently a student at the
University of St. Thomas working to earn a teaching
licensure in 5-12 social studies. When not in the classroom or on
the deck coaching he likes to spend time reading a good fantasy
novel and doing some swimming of his own.
Head Developmental Coach
Elizabeth grew up in Coon Rapids,
Minnesota and has always loved anything to do with water. She
started swimming competitively later than most. Her initial
athletic path was started as a competition dancer, and even though
her life had always been filled with swim lessons it was not until
she joined her high school swim team that she found her true
life’s passion. From there she joined the area’s club
team, Northern Lights Aquatics.
She swam at the University of
Wisconsin-Eau Claire where she specialized in swimming the
butterfly and majored in History and Elementary Education. While at
Eau Claire she met her husband James, who was a diver for the
University. They now live in Cottage Grove with their two children
Gavin and Kaia, who swim for the team, and their springer spaniel
Elsa, who loves nothing more than a daily swim in the pond behind
Elizabeth is a firm believer that
swimming is for everyone, no matter where they are coming from or
at what point in their lives they are coming to the team; and loves
to pass on her passion for the sport. She is deeply committed to
building up her swimmers’ abilities to tackle life challenges
both in the water and out of the water. There is nothing she loves
more than to see her swimmers have a light-bulb moment and finally
break through a barrier they have been working at with dedication;
making her coaching career the most rewarding thing she has done in
her professional life.
Zach J Devine
Assistant Senior Coach
Zach grew up in Columbia,
Missouri and swam for the Columbia Swim Club starting at 7 years
old. He attended Hickman High School and he was 10-time Missouri
All-State, High School All-American, and school record
He went on to swim for 4
years at the University of South Dakota and has a BS in Education
(2002), and a Master of Arts Degree in Education (2003). Recently
Zach was inducted into the Coyote Sports Hall of Fame at the
University of South Dakota for his team’s accomplishments in
Zach started his coaching
career at the Columbia Parks and Recreation Summer League while
still in high school. After completing his last year of eligibility
at USD he coached with the Siouxland Sharks Swim Club in Iowa from
2002-2003. After taking a teaching job at Oltman Middle School in
2003, Zach started coaching with Park High School and eventually
started coaching with SEMS (2005-2008). In 2008 Zach left to live
with his in-law’s, and small family in Rapid City, SD. During
this time he was the Head Coach of the Rapid City Racers in Rapid
City, SD (2008-2010) coaching his swimmers to new levels as they
achieved USA Swimming Junior National, US Open, and World Champ
Trial cuts and over 20 LSC records. In 2010 Zach moved to Lawrence,
KS and became the Head Coach and General Manager of the Lawrence
Aquahawks (2010-2012). While in Kansas Zach coached his swimmers to
LSC records, USA Swimming Junior Nationals, and 2012 Olympic
Trials. Prior to Olympic Trials Zach took a teaching job at Park
High School and moved back “home”. Zach re-joined the
SEMS staff in 2012 and primarily coaches with the Senior
Groups. As a staff member with SEMS Zach has coached and worked
with SEMS athletes that have achieved over 20 team records, LSC
records, USA Swimming Junior National and Winter National cuts.
Zach, is an American Swim Coaches Association (ASCA) Level 4
Zach is formally a Special
Education Teacher at Park High School in Cottage Grove, is
currently the Director of Student Services at Cannon River STEM
School (Faribault, MN) and owns Body Rhythms Massage in Woodbury
with his wife Rachael. Zach and Rachael have 3 children
(Averie, Aaron, Addison). Averie and Addison are both SEMS
Jordan M Skaar
Born into a family of swimmers, Megan was taught at a young age the
importance of water safety. Whether it was at the lake or swimming
laps for the Minot Otters US Swim Club, Megan never missed an
opportunity to swim. She was most competitive in breaststroke and
is quick to tell you that "Breaststroke is the
Megan earned a BA from Jamestown University. She is new to the
coaching staff and is excited to be apart of the SEMS coaching
team. Megan feels strongly that swimming teaches children not only
the importance of water safety but important life skills such as
sportsmanship, how to be a member of a team, how to take and apply
directions, and most importantly, how to set goals and work hard to
achieve those goals.
Megan lives in Cottage Grove, MN with her husband and three
children where she spends the winter under a blanket anxiously
awaiting camping season.
Liz grew up swimming in California and Minnesota. She swam for
SEMS in MN and during the summers she swam for COCC & NOVA in
CA. Liz graduated from Woodbury High School in 1999.
She attended UWEC, swam for 4 years and graduated with her BA in
Secondary Education Broadfield Social Studies. She holds a
Minnesota and California Teaching Credential, works for the Red
Cross; Training Lifeguards and teaching CPR & First Aid and is
certified in the above listed fitness classes.
Liz loves the pool, coaching and teaching fitness. She has 20
years of swim coaching experience combined with 17 years teaching
fitness classes including yoga for athletes, Pilates, spin, Tabata,
breathing relaxation, Silver Sneakers, Roll It Out and Aqualogix.
Her unique combination of CA + MN, and Swim + Fitness, have given
her the tools to be part of successful swimming programs. Swim+Dive
Teams she has coached include Woodbury High School Head Girls Coach
2017-present, Assistant Boys Coach 2016-present and Assistant Girls
Coach in 2004; South St. Paul Head Girls 2016 and Assistant Girls
2015; NBTC Marlins (CA) Head Summer 2017, BCCC Barracudas
1997-2014(Head 2002-2014) (CA),SSP Head Boys 2004-5, SEMS Age Group
& Masters 2004-5, and UWEC Special Olympics 2002-4.
Liz lives in Cottage Grove with her loving husband Nic.
Nic & Liz have a goldfish named Oshi, after the great hockey
player, a new kitten named Roxanne Horan and Liz’s two
27 year old tree frogs named Yoda & Mogli.
Liz is honored to be back at the pool coaching with SEMS.
She is driven and full of positive energy. She believes in
the motto “every piece counts” and coaches to empower
swimmers with skills to live a balanced, fun and healthy life for
themselves, their families, their hometown and global communities.
Sherry J Gross