Sarah was a Penguin swimmer for 13 years, until her “graduation” the summer of 2007. She is a 2011 graduate of Gonzaga University and loves being back in the Bay Area while working toward an elementary teaching credential at USF. Sarah has taught lessons at PHA since ‘04, and began helping with the Emperor Penguins in 2006. Coaching helped solidify a passion for teaching, and has provided many great outlets to grow in this direction. After a wonderful experience as a swimmer growing up, she appreciates being able to play a different role on the team, and is thrilled to be back at one version of home for the 6th year. Essentially the kids of PHA have defined joy for Sarah each season, and she lives year round for the summer!
Hello Penguins! My name is Gabriel Flores (Coach Gab). I
just wanted to say that I am privileged and honored to be a part of
this fantastic team. I was born and raised in Alameda and started
swimming competitively when I was 4 years old. As a coach, I have
24 years of experience. My main focus is to help swimmers develop
proper stroke mechanics, understand the importance of setting
realistic goals, and establishing good sportsmanship.
My experience as a swim coach includes head coaching positions
at Forest Hills, Rudgear Estates, Round Hill Country Club, and
Northgate HS. In addition, I served as an assistant coach for Club
Sport Valley Vista and the Walnut Creek Aquabears. I have also
spent countless hours on the pool deck coaching water polo at every
level. As a water polo coach, I was head coach of the DVC
Men’s water polo team, Northgate HS girls and boys varsity
water polo team, and was the girls program director at Lamorinda
As a competitive swimmer, I swam for the Alameda Alligators,
Pleasanton Seahawks, Walnut Creek Aquabears, and was team captain
(swimming & water polo) at Encinal HS. I was an NCS finalist in
swimming, and an All-NCS water polo player. I also qualified for
Junior Nationals in the 200 back. After high school, I attended DVC
and was an All-Nor Cal water polo player, an All-American swimmer,
and state champion in the 200 back. After DVC, I transferred
to Cal Poly State University, in San Luis Obispo. During my time in
SLO, I competed in D1 swimming and was a member of our club water
polo team that went on to win the CWPA National Championship.
When I am not coaching, I enjoy snow skiing, following Bay Area
sports, playing water polo, and spending time with my wife
Caroline, daughter Genevieve (2), and son Lucas (1). I am currently
a full time teacher in the Mount Diablo Unified School District and
have been teaching for 16 years. I have been a physical
education teacher at Sequoia Middle School in Pleasant Hill for the
past 8 years.
Joanna Marie Sachs
Emperor Lead Coach/Assistant Coach
My name is Joanna Sachs and I am so excited to be coming
back to coach this summer! I have helped coach 8
and unders for the last two summers and have been the Emperor
Penguin head coach for the last 3 summers. I swam all four
years of high school and all four of those summers as a
Penguin. I am currently finishing my sophomore year of
college at San Diego State University … Go Aztecs…
and am majoring in Child and Family Development in hopes of
becoming an elementary school teacher. Some things I
enjoy doing in my free time are shopping, going to the gym, and
cooking. I can’t wait to be back on the pool deck and
spend another great summer with the Penguin families.
grew up swimming for Forest Hills and coached there for 15 years.
She's also a CPHS alum, where she swam all four years and was a
team captain her senior year. She stuck to the water at Sonoma
State, joining the crew team for three years. Jessica is also a
sixth grade teacher in Danville. She's looking forward to a PHUN
summer with the penguins!
Jordan is currently in his 14th
year of competitive swimming and is looking forward to being on the
PHA deck this summer. He first started at PHA in 2005 as an emperor
and continued to swim at the club and high school level. While at
College Park, Jordan was an NCS finalist in the IM and Butterfly.
This past year, he has been swimming on the varsity Villanova
University Swimming and Diving Team while pursuing a degree in
chemical engineering. As a coach, Jordan looks to bring different
aspects of technique he has accumulated over the years while
promoting the PHA culture he loved when he was younger. He is very
excited to spend his summer back in the Bay where his swim journey