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Coaches & Directors
Our coaches, as members of the American Swim Coaches Association, have access to the most comprehensive training and certification program for youth coaches of any sport in the United States. They provide assurances that the time children spend in swimming will be quality time. 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 administrative questions related to dues, safety, policy issues, etc. please contact Kym.
Coaching Staff

Goran S Westerlund

Head Coach

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Head Coach, March 2015-present;  Head Age Group Coach, Nov 2012-March 2015

B.S. Education, 1979 University of Nebraska

American Swim Coach Association/ASCA Member/Level 4 Certified Coach

Goran has a long swimming and coaching career. He was a part of the Swedish National team in the 70’s, and went to swim for coach Ron Ballatore in Pasadena, Ca while training for the 1976 Olympics.  Unfortunately he didn’t make the team but received a full scholarship at the University of Nebraska, Lincoln, under Coach Cal Bentz where he was team captain.  Goran met his wife Eloisa in LA, while training for the 1976 Olympics. Both come from families with a long background within swimming. They have 3 grown children, where the youngest is currently swimming for a college in Florida.  Goran became head coach for the first time at age 24, and has all through his career worked parallel as a physical education teacher.  He held the head age group coaching position for the season 2002 – 2003 at the Rose Bowl Aquatics.  His latest head coach position was for Karlstad SS in Sweden from 2005 to 2011.During that time span he brought the club from having one national qualified swimmer to 12, with several medals and a national team ranking of 14th in 2011.

Among his accomplishments is one Swedish national record holder in the 50 free, a Scandinavian champion in the 1500 free, and having 4 swimmers in the finals in the 1500 free at indoor nationals 2010.  His age group swimmers have become numerous national age group champions and medalists.  Throughout the years, Goran has facilitated scholarships for over 15 swimmers to various American colleges and Universities.  Coach Gorans philosophy is characterized by a strong belief in everyone’s equal value and that everyone deserves to be treated with respect. Göran believe that you build on your strengths and his goal is always to develop each individual to his or her highest potential.

 Göran believes that as a coach you have to find the level your swimmers are at, and coach from their skill level. It is important that they feel motivated, believe in themselves, and that they can develop to their absolute best potential. The goal is to create a positive environment where each swimmer can grow both mentally and physically. He believes that good attitude, good sportsmanship, hard work and dedication will help the individual throughout life.

 

Brittany C Vocke

Head Age Group Coach/Silver 11&O/Gold

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Assistant Coach, October 2014 - Present

B.S. Exercise Science , George Mason University, Fairfax, VA

American Swim Coach Association/ASCA Member/Level 2 Certified Coach

I started swimming when I was 8 for my local summer league team, Fox Mill Estates, in Northern Virginia (NVSL). I swam Varsity for my high school team, the Oakton Cougars for 4 years and my USS club team, York Swim Club. I went on to swim for George Mason University (GMU) where I was a sprinter who mainly focused on the 50 and 100 free, along with the 100 fly.  It was during high school that I started coaching in the summer and really became passionate about coaching during my college years.  After college I became a coach for Machine Aquatics in Vienna, VA where I focused on age group and senior group practices. I have been a USA Certified coach for the last 3 years of my coaching career. Outside of coaching I keep an active lifestyle.  I participate in triathlons, focusing on the Olympic and full iron distances. I also enjoy skiing and snowboarding for fun. Now that I live in California I would like to keep an even more active lifestyle and would like to pick up surfing, hiking, and mountain biking. I look forward to coaching with SCA and hope to pass on my love for this sport for many years to come.

Bert Bergen

Foundations Program Director

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Novice/Bronze Program Director, August 2012-Present

BA Communication, CSU Chico, 1990

American Swim Coach Association/ASCA Member/Level 3 Certified Coach

National Interscholastic Swim Coaches Association / NISCA

CIF Swimming Advisory Committee

Coach Bert was an age group swimmer in California and Connecticut.  He was a four year letterman at Chico State and team captain his senior year.  He was a 7-time NCAA All-American as his team finished in the top-5 all four years at the NCAA Championships.  Coach Bert competed in US Masters Swimming through 2005 and broke 24 National and 5 World Masters Records while swimming for the Long Beach and El Segundo Swim Clubs.  He has competed in more than 70 open water races including the Escape From Alcatraz 1.2 mile and five Trans Tahoe Relays (1999 and 2015-2018).

Bert moved to Dana Point in 1998 and started the St. Margaret’s HS swim program in 2004 and the Saddleback Valley Christian program in 2007.  Bert has coached two teams to top-3 CIF finishes, more than 50 league champions, 67 CIF finalists, nine CIF champions, 15 Academic All-Americans, and five All-Americans in 20 years as a high school coach. Bert is proud of the fact that twelve of his student-athlete swimmers have continued on to swim collegiately.

Bert has been a novice/age group coach for 15 years and founded and has coached the Red Tide Swim Team, a novice summer team in South Orange County since 2011. More than 80 "Tiders" have moved on to year round programs.  

Coach Bert believes that everyone can enjoy and improve in this sport if they THINK, RELAX, and FEEL the water.   Have fun, train smart, swim fast, and have more fun. After more than 45 years, he still loves everything about the water!  

Lisa Empey

Silver 10 & Under Coach

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Assistant Coach, August 2017 - Present

B.S. Mathematics, University of Nebraska-Lincoln

American Swim Coach Association/ASCA Member/Level 2 Certified Coach

Coach Lisa comes to San Clemente Aquatics with 7 years experience as lead 10&under coach at the Coto Coyotes Swim Club.  At Coto, she mentored some of the finest and fastest 10 and younger swimmers in Southern California, coaching many to Junior Olympic medals and team records.  Lisa has also been an assistant coach for girls swimming at Tesoro High School for the last 5 seasons with the girls team winning their league champs meet the past 4 years and finishing as high as 2nd at the CIF-SS Div 1 Championships.  In addition, she brings 17 years of swim parent experience with all 3 of her children starting in summer league and then moving on to club swimming.  Her youngest finished her club career at SCA and is currently a freshman member of the Tufts University Swim and Dive Team in the Boston area.

Coach Lisa’s other swim related work experience includes several years as a Red Cross swim instructor and city pool lifeguard.  Before beginning her coaching career her employment also varied from detasseling corn to retail sales and waitressing.  Lisa then spent 4 years post college as a software engineer working on defense contracts at Hughes Aircraft Company and 10 years at IBM as a systems engineer, product specialist and sales representative.  Of the many diverse jobs she has held, without a doubt Lisa enjoys coaching the most.  In addition to the joy of working with young children, she has seen how youth sports can increase a child’s confidence and self esteem which in turn can have a huge positive impact in all areas of their lives.  Her goal is to encourage young swimmers to grow and push just outside their relative comfort zones in the sport while creating friendships and having FUN!

Outside of coaching, Lisa enjoys walking and swimming for fitness, and has swum with a masters team for many years.  She also loves sports including Nebraska college football, movies, books and travel, Netflix binging and HGTV.  Her job at Hughes brought her to California from Nebraska where she met her husband of 23 years, Morgan, and they both enjoy an active and busy southern California lifestyle.

 
 
 

Jessica M Chene

Mini-Triton Coach

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Assistant Coach,  January 2015 - Present

Born and raised in San Clemente California, I've been swimming since I could walk--whether in the pool or in the ocean. You could always find me around the water. I swam with SCAT from age 6, and played water polo from age 8, continuing with both sports through high school. I began teaching private swim lessons at 17 until joining San Clemente Aquatics. I truly enjoy teaching others in a sport that I love and cherish. Currently studying Graphic Arts and Drawing at Saddleback College.

Haley N Hokanson

Bronze Group Coach

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Novice Program Coach, September 2016-Present

Coach Haley was raised in Orange County.  She graduated from Saddleback Valley Christian School.  While there, she played varsity basketball, softball, golf, and swim.  She was a league champion in all four sports and was named captain of her golf and swim teams in her senior year. She had the privilege of having Coach Bert Bergen as her swim coach for the three years she was on the team.
 
This summer, she taught swim classes at Saddleback College for beginners through competitive swim levels in addition to teaching private swim classes.  She enjoys working with young swimmers and being a part of their athletic development. She is currently a junior at Vanguard University working towards her degree in Kinesiology.  She hopes to one day apply her degree to a career in sports, preferably SWIMMING. Haley is excited to be a part of the San Clemente Aquatic Team and looks forward to working with the Novice and Age Group swimmers.

Hannah M Maffris

Bronze Group Coach

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Bryanna N Ruddick

HS Prep/Senior I Coach

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Assistant Coach, August 2018 - Present

B.S. Health/Psychology , Monmouth University, NJ

Bryanna grew up swimming competitively and has been a swim coach since 2015.

Julie M deFabrique

Assistant Coach

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Assistant Coach, October 2013-Present

B.S. Furnishings & Interiors, University of Georgia

American Swim Coach Association/ASCA

In 1999, Julie was the NCAA Champion in the 1650 freestyle, competing for the University of Georgia. She was an U.S. National Team member in 1997, '98, '99 and '00 and was ranked as high as 4th in the world in the 1,500-meter freestyle. She won three medals at the World University Games-bronze in the 400-meter free in 1997, and silver in the 1,500 free and bronze in the 800 free in 1999. Julie participated in the 1996 Olympic team trials and was a finalist in the 2000 Olympic trials, placing fifth in both the 400- and 800-meter free events.

 

 

At the University of Georgia, she was a 12-time All-American, three-time SEC champion and twice a first-team all-SEC selection. She won Georgia's Hardest Worker Award in 1997 and Most Improved Award in 1999, and she was a four-time letter winner. She was a six-time school record-holder in the 500-, 1,000- and 1,650-yard free events and the 800-yard free relay.  As well as winning the 1,650-yard free at NCAA’s her senior year, she helped the Bulldogs win their first NCAA championship team crown.  Julie is excited to be able to give back to the sport that she feels has given her much to her life’s success. She wants to share and teach how fun this sport can be, as well as learning life long lessons.

 

Sandy M Kos

Assist Coach-Sub

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Board of Directors

Mike Johnson

Board Member-President

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Margaret Van Blerk

Board Member-Vice President

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Natalie Gamette

Board Member-Secretary

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Blaine Morgan

Board Member-Treasurer

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Jay Burress

Board Member

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Christine Needell

Board Member

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Frank Schneider

Board Member

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Daniel Sudakoff

Board Member

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