Excellence 300

Coaches and Directors

Coaches and Directors
Coaching Staff
Nick Frasersmith Head Coach-Senior Group Coach

Nick Frasersmith - Nick's coaching career started in the early 1980'scoaching in a summer club league for seven years and a graduate assistant coach for Metropolitan State College for one year,  In 1988, Nick founded Riptide Aquatics and worked as head coach until 1993.  He helped form the Colorado Stars in the fall of 1999 and was head coach through October 2008.  While Head Coach of the Colorado Stars, Nick lead the team to seven Short Course and five Long Course State Championships.

Nick has been a member of the 21 time State Champion and four time NISCA National Champion Regis Jesuit Boys High School coaching staff as an assistant since 1985, taking on the Head Coach position in 2013.  Nick has been the Head Coach for the four time State and one time Independent School NISCA National Champion Regis Jesuit Girls team from 2003 to the present.  Nick was selected as the National Girls High School Coach of the Year in 2013 and the Denver Post Colorado High School Girls Coach of the Year in 2007, 2011, 2013, 2014 and 2015.

In 2009, Nick started Denver Swim Academy with Carla Andrews and Chris Koerber.  Over the years, Nick has coached Junior National Champions, State Champions, Swimmers of the Year, Junior National and Senior National qualifiers, along with Olympic Trial qualifiers.  He has coached USA National Junior Team members as well as several National Select swimmers.

His philosophy for a successful swimmer is the combination of sound technique, hard swimming, and a good social environment. Swimming is FUN!!

Chris Koerber Head Age Group Coach - White/Blue Groups

Chris Koerber Chris has over 25 years of coaching experience with a few teams in Colorado, but has definitely found a comfortable home the past 9 years with Denver Swim Academy. He appreciates the DSA coaching staff's commitment and dedication to their swimmers and the sport. He is also a firm believer in the team's philosophy of stressing quality fundamentals and practice habits at an early age.  This approach, as he says, will help with short-term success but more importantly, long-term growth.  Chris also enjoys the team building atmosphere and positive learning environment that has been established at DSA.

Chris admits that he' s been fortunate to have coached some very talented and special athletes, including many State Champions and Zone finalists.  In 2004, 2012, and 2014 he was honored by his peers as Colorado Age Group Coach of the Year.

Erik Downs Black and Senior 2 Coach/Strength Coach

Erik started coaching over ten years ago with a summer league team in Austin, Texas. Since then he has worked with several teams in the Austin area, most notably, Nitro Swimming. While there, he worked with several groups, alongside some of the best coaches in Texas. His primary focus was the senior level swimmers and the strength and conditioning program. During his five seasons with Nitro, the team won three Texas Age Group State Championships and a Junior National Title. 

With a Degree in Kinesiology and multiple certifications in swimming, strength and conditioning, and biomechanics — Erik brings a unique coaching style to the pool deck. His philosophy is based around producing well-rounded athletes with a profound mastery of basic swimming skills. 

As a swimmer, Erik started later than most of his peers. He learned how to swim his sophomore year of high school and improved quickly enough to finish tenth in in the state in the 100 fly and 200 I.M. his senior year. After High school, he swam for The University of Texas of the Permian Basin.

Kevan Valenzuela Silver Group Coach

Kevan is from the Imperial Valley, California. Kevan started coaching in May of 2010 for Imperial Valley Desert Aquatic (IVDA) for whom he swam with throughout high school. Kevan was Head Site Coach at IVDA Holtville satellite program. During the summer Kevan has run Summer Recreation Swim Programs in Calipatria (’12 &’13) and Holtville (‘14). Each of these had 40-50 swimmers varying in ability. During the summer of  '14, Kevan acted as Interim Head Coach for IVDA.  During the summer of '16 Kevan ran the Willow Creek Wahoos summer league team. Kevan holds a degree in Mechanical Engineering from CU.

Kevan has a strong passion for swimming and believes in technique and high effort as the platforms for long term success. He has coached all levels of swimming from swim lessons to Jr. National Qualifiers.

Brenna Graves Assistant Coach

My coaching career began 8 years ago on the Stonegate Stingrays, a summer league team. I spent 6 years as an assistant coach and 2 years as the head coach. I attended Kansas State University where I taught swim lessons at their natatorium. I recently moved back to Colorado for nursing school and have been coaching for Lifetime Aquatics club team. I am excited to join the DSA coaches and be able to help swimmers improve in a fun and supportive environment. 

As a swimmer I grew up swimming on the Stonegate Stingrays and joined DSA when I discovered my love for swimming. I also was a part of Chaparral High School's Girls varsity swim and dive team all four years and was a captain for two years.

Kelse Johnson Assistant Coach

Kelse began her coaching career in 2008 as a volunteer coach for Special Olympics Colorado. She then spent her summers from 2009 to 2015 coaching for the Piney Creek Heat Swim Team in Aurora, CO. Kelse attended Ohio University where she swam and studied Special Education. While at OU, she taught private lessons and learned how to use swim therapy for individuals with special needs and behavioral challenges. After graduating in 2016, she served as a student coach for the OU Swimming & Diving team for their 2016-2017 season while completing her Masters in Counseling.

As a swimmer, Kelse grew up swimming for Piney Creek where she returned to coach this May. She joined club swimming as a 7-year-old competing for Falcon Aquatic Club for 2 years, then moved to Colorado STARS for 5 years, and then to DSA in 2009 when it was established. Kelse swam for Smoky Hill High School on their varsity team and served as captain her senior year. Kelse then went to college at OU where she was also the team captain for the OU Swimming and Diving team for the 2015 and 2016 seasons.

Kelse is passionate about swimming and strives for others to experience the joy the sport encompasses. She believes positive mental attitudes and quality hard work are essential parts to swimming. She is very excited to be back in her home state and back on the pool deck!

Jay Kim Assistant Coach

Jay was born and raised in Seoul, South Korea. Jay swam competitively for 23 years. When Jay moved to the United States at age 14, he swam with the Colorado STARS for Coach Nick Frasersmith and Regis Jesuit High School. Jay has been a private swim instructor for 2 years.

Jay graduated and swam for Drury University where he was the NCAA DII National Swimmer of the Year in 2010, setting a new NCAA DII record in the 200 Fly with a time of 1:42.99 breaking an eight-year-old record. Jay was an NCAA Division II Men’s Academic All-American 2009, 2010, 2011.                                                                  

After graduating from Drury, Jay returned to Korea where he swam professionally for five years, participating in the world military championships in Switzerland.

Jay is finishing up his masters at the University of Missouri.

Jay’s motto “Don’t stop when you’re tired. Stop when you’re done.”

Board of Directors