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Coaches & Directors

We are 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 administration, such as dues, safety, fundraising, or policy issues, please contact the swim office.

Coaching Staff

Mark David Warkentin

Head Coach

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Coach Mark assumed the role of head coach at SBSC on December 1st 2012.   He previously coached locally for San Marcos High School, La Cumbre Country Club and SBAC.  He also acted as a volunteer coach for the UCSB collegiate program under head coach Gregg Wilson between 2004 and 2009.

Mark began his swimming career in Santa Barbara with SBSC in the late 1980's.  As an age group swimmer he broke 3 Southern California Swimming records, was a member of the USA Swimming National Jr. Team, a 4 time CIF champion and was a finalist at the 1996 Olympic Trials in the 400 Freestyle.  Over the next 10 years Mark competed at National competitions as a finalist in events ranging from the 200 to the 1500 free and the 400 IM.  Mark competed for the USA National team as a member of the Goodwill Games team and the World University Games Team winning multiple gold medals.  In 2006 he transitioned to Open Water Swimming and was a National team member for 4 years, earning a Silver Medal at the World Championships in the 25k in 2008.  Mark's competitive career culminated with an 8th place finish at the 2008 Beijing Olympics in the 10k. Coach Mark also raced in open water events in the Amazon River, around Manhatten Island and throughout Croatia.

Coach Mark is the Coaches rep for the Coastal Section committee and is in his 5th full year of coaching at the USA Swimming level.  He is very excited to help SBSC athletes achieve their own greatest success in the pool.

Mark and his wife Diana have two boys.

John Abrami

PM Masters Coach, Assistant Coach

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Coach AB has been coaching for over 26 years.   He has coached at every level from beginning age swimmer to the senior national level.  At the LSC level coach AB has been an All-Star coach, Zone Coach, served on the board of directors, Coach of the Year and led his team to the LSC championship.  Coach AB has also coached Masters swimming for 26 years.  During that time he has coached world ranked masters swimmers, world ranked triathletes and a Masters National Championship. 

Coach AB believes that perfecting technique and developing a strong aerobic base is the key to success in any swimming event.   He believes that improving the small details of starts, turns, and stroke technique along with consistent training will led to fast swimming.  Swimming is a great sport; the attributes you need to succeed in swimming are the same ones you need to succeed in life.  Being involved in swimming can’t help but make you a better person. 

JJ Jones

Head Age Group Coach, AM Masters Coach

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Coach JJ grew up in Hemet, California where he swam for the Hemet Valley Dolphins from the time he was eight years old until leaving for college. He swam in college at U.C. Santa Cruz where he was conference finalist in the 500 free two years in a row. After graduation from U.C. Santa Cruz in 1998 with a B.A. in History, he helped coach the swim team for five years. As the assistant swim coach for U.C. Santa Cruz JJ coached the distance group and the 400 I.M.ers; out of this group, seven All-American swims were produced. While coaching for the University JJ also coached for the USS swim team in the area, Cabrillo Threshers. At Cabrillo the junior group and the pre-senior group were his primary focus. While coaching the college students and the age group swimmers Coach JJ also coached for Santa Cruz Masters. Coach JJ moved to Santa Barbara in 2004 and is the Advanced Age Group Coach at Los Banos as well as the morning Masters coach.

Coach JJ is currently entering his 11th year coaching for Santa Barbara Swim Club. During his tenure he has coached many SBSC swimmers to success. Many of his swimmers have made various Southern California All-Star teams such as, Pacific Coast All-Stars, the North American Challenge Cup (NACC) and Festival. ASCA Level 3. JJ was appointed to coach at the 2007 Western Zone Select Camp. JJ for the past 10 years has coached Western Zones (2005-2006) and  the North American Challenge Cup (NACC) (2007-2014) for Southern California Swimming. All these levels of swimming have taught JJ a lot about coaching the sport and about life in general. Coach JJ enjoys reading and watching movies in his spare time and would like to see how far his coaching can take him.  Coach JJ lives in Santa Barbara with his wife Sarah who is a lecturer in the writing program at U.C. Santa Barbara.

Board of Directors

Sara Ellis

Treasurer

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Marci A Steelman

Vice President

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Paul A Castleberg

President

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Amy E Fritz

Board Member

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Lucia Eickert

Secretary

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Jennifer Hall

Board Member

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Ian Sullivan

Board Member

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Tara Rybnicek

Board Member

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Susan Woodhouse

Board Member

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