We are excited to announce Greg Burgess as the new Head Coach for the St. Augustine Cyclones Palencia site! Greg Burgess comes to the team with a wealth of swimming successes and coaching experience. Coach Greg Burgess is an Olympic medalist and a former All American competitive swimmer. He swam for Bolles High School and later the University of Florida in Gainesville. While in college he set four American records: two in the 200-yard IM and two in the 400-yard IM and was a four-time NCAA champion in the same two events. He was the 1993 NCAA Male Swimmer of the Year. Coach Greg Burgess is also a two time Olympian representing the US in 1992 and 1996. He won a silver medal in the 200 IM in 1992. He swam on various USA Swimming Nationals Teams from 1986-1996.
Burgess joined the US Marine Corps in 1997 and was commissioned as a Second Lieutenant. Following 9/11, he served two tours of duty in Iraq in 2005 and 2007. Following his retirement from the Marine Corps in 2014, Greg has served as an assistant head coach for the Amberjax Episcopal Swim team. In 2013, Greg was the head coach for the West Carteret High School in North Carolina. He also coached the USMC Wounded Warrior Regiment Swim Team. He is a member of the Marine Corps Sports Hall of Fame (2010) and the University of Florida Hall of Fame (2016).
Developmental Swim Coach: Melissa Harmon
Melissa's swimming career began at the age of four when she competed with her first summer league team. While her love for swimming grew, she graduated to competing with the Clearwater Aquatic Club (CAT) which led to swimming in college at Gardner Webb University. While at GWU, Melissa was an NCAA Div. II national champion in the 1,650 yd. freestyle. Other achievements include being a two time Div.II All American and All Southern States Honors in 2000 and 2001. She was also honored with being inducted into the Gardner Webb Athletic Hall of Fame in 2013.
During her swimming years, Melissa had the opportunity to coach the Countryside Country Club summer league in 2000; the West Florida Lightning Aquatics in the summer of 2001; and Boiling Springs Hammerheads while attending college in 2000 - 2001. In 2003 she coached with the Orlando YMCA and in 2005 with the Makos Aquatic Club of Gainesville summer league. She was also an assistant coach with the Palencia Piranhas in 2015-2016.
Melissa has been married for 14 years and has three wonderful children, Luke, Ella, and Eden. Her love and passion for swimming remains strong and she looks forward to teaching, guiding, and encouraging each swimmer she has the privilege of coaching.