Coaching Staff: Qualifications And Training
The Gators Swim Club coaching staff consists of a Team Director, Site Director and coaches.
All our coaches are USA swimming accredited and have passed the following United States Swimming requirements for coaching credentials:
- Background check
- CPR/First Aid
- Athlete Protection Training
- Safety Training for Coaches
In addition, we believe in continuing education for our coaches and take every opportunity, such as the United States Regional Coaches Clinic, to learn from and be trained by some of the best and most experienced coaches in the country. We hire coaches with a passion for the sport, matched by an enthusiasm for teaching age-group swimmers.
Gators Swim Club Coaching Staff
Felipe Delgado is a two-time Olympian (1996 & 2000). Felipe started his career by swimming for the South Gate Gators before moving to Orange County and swimming for the Mission Viejo Nadadores. Felipe competed at Mission Viejo High School where he set numerous high school records. He went on to compete at Arizona State University where he graduated with a Marketing Degree. Felipe graduated as a member of the dean's list and was recognized as a scholar-athlete. While at Arizona State, he was a fifteen time All-American, and qualified for finals multiple times at the NCAA Divison I Championships. He was the bronze medalist at the 1996 NCAA Championships (50-yard freestyle) and went on to help set multiple team records in the relay events, while posting Top 10 all-time swims in individual events. Felipe was a Pac-10 Champion and US Open bronze medalist (50-meter freestyle). Post graduation, Felipe swam with Dave Salo and the Irvine Novaquatics, and finished his career swimming for Mike Bottom and The World Sprint Team.
Felipe is married to Megan Delgado, and has three daughters—Anicka, who currently swims for the Gators Swim Club, Valentina and Francesca, both in learn-to-swim lessons at Evolution Swim Academy.
Evan Forbes is the Site Director at Ladera Ranch. He comes to the pool deck with a myriad of experiences with children, as well as competitive swimming. He has 15 years of experience as a classroom teacher, working with grades K through 6 and spent 10 years as an age-group swimmer, and finally coach. Evan began his swimming career late in life at the older age-group level, he swam for his high school team in Ohio and then went on to The Ohio State University where he walked on as a sophomore and earning varsity status by his senior year. In that same year, Evan represented the United States in international competition as a member of the U.S. Maccabi Team competing in Sydney, Australia where he won 3 gold medals (one individual and 2 relay). Evan has coached for nearly 20 years at the age-group level and one year at the collegiate level. He holds a Bachelors of Science from The Ohio State University and a Masters of Science Education from Northern Illinois University. He has been married to his wife Tracey for 23 years and they have two boys Eric and Ryan. Eric has represented the Gators Swim Club since his Junior Year of High School and will again be swimming this fall at the University of Redlands as a junior.
Jeff Natalizio did his college swimming at UC Berkeley, and credits much of his coaching style to having trained with some of the sport’s greatest coaches- Nort Thornton, Mike Bottom, Dave Salo, and Dave Durden. Jeff is a Certified Strength and Conditioning Specialist (CSCS) and, as a strength coach, was instrumental in Anthony Ervin’s achieving a record-setting gold medal in the 50 freestyle at the Rio Olympics in 2016. Before joining Gators, Jeff spent a year coaching in Serbia, working with some of that country’s top swimmers. Jeff has been coaching with Gators since April, 2015, and many of his swimmers have gone on to swim in college at various levels. Jeff brings a level of technical and physiological understanding to his workouts, and his passion for the sport of swimming is palpable and infectious. In his own swimming, Jeff is a multiple US Masters national record holder. You can learn a little more about Coach Jeff at www.ziofitelite.com
Alicia Thornton graduated as valedictorian of Aliso Niguel High School, where she was also CIF champion in several events. She was an accomplished age-group and high school swimmer in Southern California, achieving Junior and Senior National Time Standards in multiple events. Alicia swam for the University of Southern California, where she received a Bachelor’s Degree in Health Promotion and Disease Prevention, and a Master’s Degree in Public Health. She also worked for USC as a nutritionist in childhood obesity research and prevention.