Coaches and Directors

Coaching Staff
Joseph Waldorf Head Coach

2nd Year at LYONS / 13th Year Coaching

Lead Coach: Senior 3 & 13&14 - 3

Coach Joey is thrilled to begin his 2nd year with LYONS Aquatics!  Coach Joey comes to LYONS following a successful stint at the Head Coach with Sheridan Swim Team in Quincy, IL.  Prior to Quincy, Joey spent time at New Trier serving as the Direct of Operations and coaching groups and athletes of all ages and ability.  Coach Joey's philosophy is based on three parts: 

1.Structure, Routine, and Continuity from an early age encourage positive growth and development physically and psychologically.

2.Quality always trumps quantity.

3.That coaches set positive examples at and away from the training environment.  

Coach Joey has been fortunate throughout his career to work with many great athletes and serve his Clubs and the Illinois Swimming community at large in many roles.  Most recently, while serving as part of Illinois Swimming's Age Group Committee, Coach Joey traveled to Bloomington, IN with the 11-12 Pro Series Camp as as manager.  He has also served as Head Coach for multiple camps, Assistant Coach several times with Illinois Swimming's 13-14 Select Camps at the Olympic Training Center, and as part of Camps Planning sub-committee.  

When Joey is not at the pool, he enjoys spending time with family and friends, attending baseball games, and cooking.  

Julie Jackson Retention & Registration Director

8th Year at LYONS / 16th Year Coaching

Lead Coach: Blue & 9&10 - 2

Coach Julie joined LYONS Aquatics in 2012 has primarily worked with 10&under swimmers.  She believes that all swimmers should have a solid foundation of stroke technique sprinkled with fun.  She believes in making a personal connection with her swimmers, foster a supportive and inspiring environment and encourages new friendships amongst the team.  

Prior to LYONS, Coach Julie spent 10years in the Parks and Recreation field where she was the Aquatic Director at the Oak Park YMCA and the Clarendon Hills Park District. She coached for TOPS at the Oak Park YMCA and her time at the Clarendon Hills Park District was mainly overseeing the operations of the Lions Park Pool, Sea Lions Swim Team and various other Aquatics and Adult and Community Recreation Programming. 

Coach Julie graduated from the University of Iowa with degrees in Sociology and English.  She currently resides in Downers Grove with her husband and two daughters. 

Megan Jensen Personnel Director & Performance Adviser

9th Year at LYONS 

Lead Coach: 11&12 - 2 / 13&14 - 3

Coach Megan joined the LYONS Aquatics coaching staff in April 2011.  She went to the University of Iowa where she studied Environmental Geography.  Coach Megan has 3 children, Jay (17), Rose (14), and Tim (12).  Rose and Tim both swim for LYONS Aquatics.  Currently, she works part time for EMT, teaches science at Herrick Middle School in Downers Grove, and is the head girls' swim coach at York High School in Elmhurst. Coach Megan believes that technique is an important pillar to be a successful swimmer, and that it is essential to continuously work to improve body position and stroke efficiency. She wants the swimmers to also remember that in swimming, and in life they should always give it their best, set goals to achieve, yet take it one day at a time.

Doug Eichstaedt Head Coach - Water Polo
Colleen Nelson Lead Coach: Yellow & 9&10 - 1

3rd Year at LYONS 

Lead Coach: Yellow / 9&10 - 1

Colleen Nelson started working for LYONS Aquatics as an Assistant Swim Coach in the Fall of 2017. During her time at LYONS she has worked extensively with all groups. Before coaching at LYONS, she worked as an Assistant Coach at New Trier Aquatics. She worked with similar age groups there. She's enjoying working with all of our LYONS Athletes!
 
When she is not coaching, she is an elementary school Special Education Teacher in Riverside District 96. She loves working with kids and teaching them new things. You will usually not see her during the summer months because she LOVES to travel when she has time off from work! She has traveled all around the world and has traveled to 6 out of 7 continents. 
 
Colleen is very excited to lead our Yellow & 9&10-1s!  She is excited to share her swim coaching experience as a lead coach and teach her swimmers all the basics so they can become great competitive swimmers with LYONS Aquatics!
Jack Smith Lead Coach: 11&12 - 1 & 13&14 - 2

1st Year at LYONS 

Lead Coach: 11&12 - 1 / 13&14 - 2

Jack began his swimming career at the age of 9.  Hailing from England, Jack began attending boarding school at the age of 12 where he set multiple national age group records and won multiple national titles in the sprint freestyle events.  Jack represented England multiple times during his junior career, eventually moving the City of Derby where he spent time training with the likes of Adam Peaty and other British National teamers.  Jack is a recent graduate of the University of Iowa, where he studied Sports & Recreation Management while minoring in History & Human Relations.  Jack currently holds multiple Iowa school records and finished his competitive career as a multi-time NCAA All-American.   

Denny Wind Lead Coach: 11&12 - 3 & 13&14 - 1

1st Year at LYONS / 

Lead Coach: 11&12 - 3 / 13&14 - 1

Denny grew up in Downers Grove, competing for Express Swim Team and Downers Grove North High School.  Denny continued his swimming career at Augustana College where he served as a team captain for two years.  After graduating, Denny began coaching with Express Swim Team leading both Age Group and Senior athletes.  Coach Denny believe in having fun and learning through new drills and techniques to help athletes achieve their goals! 

Matthew Harder Lead Coach: Senior 2

Coach Matt began swimming competitively when he was 8 years old with the Riverside Brookfield Otters. He then went on to swim for the Academy Bullets Swim Club, where he was a multiple-time state qualifier in the 1000 and 1650 freestyle events and was part of two consecutive team state titles. Matt also attended Riverside Brookfield High School, where he played varsity water polo, was a four-year varsity swimmer and served as the team captain his senior year. Coach Matt is currently working on obtaining his teaching degree at Concordia University Chicago. 

Prior to joining the LYONS staff, Matt was a both a senior and age group coach with the Express Swim Team. Coach Matt also served as a Team Illinois Coach for the 2019 Open Water Zones Meet, where Team Illinois captured 1st place. Matt works with the Village Field Club as an assistant coach in the summer, and has been their head pool manager and swim lessons coordinator.  

Matt is extremely excited to share his knowledge of the sport and to teach his athletes the importance of hard work and perseverance. 

Kevin Garza Lead Coach: Strength & Conditioning
Kurt Johns LTHS Physical Welfare - Division Chair

Coach Johns began swimming competitively when he was 8 years old for Lyons Swim Club.  He was a team captain and 3 year state qualifier while attending Lyons Township High School.  Coach Johns continued to swim for the next 4 years at Eastern Illinois University where he was a team captain and a school record holder. 

Coach Johns has been a high school teacher and head coach since 2003; 8 years as the head boys swimming coach at Naperville North and 8 years as the head girls swimming coach at Lyons Township.  During that time, his teams have finished in the Top 10 at the IHSA state meet on ten separate occassions. He was named the Illinois Swimming and Diving Association “State Coach of the Year” in 2007 and again in 2010. In  addition, he has been named the “ISDA Sectional Coach of the Year” 8 times during his career.  Since becoming a high school head swimming coach, he has coached 49 All-State or All-American swimmers.  Coach Johns also worked with Maverick Swim Club in Naperville for 8 years before joining the Lyons Aquatics staff in 2011. 

Coach Johns is currently the Division Chair for Physical Welfare at Lyons Township High School.  He received a Bachelor of Science in Physical Education in 2003, a Master of Science in Curriculum and Instruction in 2007, and his Educational Administration (type 75) certification in 2010. 

Coach Johns is excited to continue working with the swimmers, parents, and other coaches of Lyons Aquatics to continue to build a successful swimming program. He lives in the area with his wife, Courtney, and his 4 children – Hayden, Lucas, Connor, and Halle.

Erin Rodriguez LTHS Head Boys Swimming & Diving Coach

Coach Erin started swimming on Woodstock Dolphins when she was 8 and then moved to Arlington Alligators where she swam from age 9 through high school. She swam at Buffalo Grove High School and was a team captain, school record holder, All-State, and All-American swimmer. She then continued to her swimming career at the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign where she was a team captain and school record holder for the Illini. 

 

Coach Erin started teaching swim lessons and coaching at her neighborhood pool during the summers while she was in high school. She began coaching high school in 2013 as an assistant coach for the University Laboratory High School girls team in Urbana while she was finishing her degree. After graduation, she started coaching at Glenbrook Aquatics in 2014. She worked mainly with the developmental groups before working with the senior groups for several seasons. In 2015, Coach Erin started as an assistant coach for the Lyons Township girls and boys swim teams. She has spent the last 4 seasons at LT and is currently an assistant coach for the girls team and the head coach for the boys team. 

 

Coach Erin studied Elementary Education at the University of Illinois and has spent the last 5 years teaching 6th grade. She is currently a 6th grade English Language Arts teacher at Freedom Middle School in Berwyn. 

Paul Busse Aquatics Coordinator LT South

Coach Paul Busse started swimming at the age of 5 at WSSC.  Most of his time was spent at Lyons Swim Club. He attended Lyons Township H.S. where he went to state all four years in the 500 Freestyle, ran cross country, and played water polo. He swam distance (500,100,1650) for Carthage College.  He graduated in Business Management.  He is know for his mustache.  Paul began coaching water polo with Lyons Swim Club.  Today, Paul is coaching swimming and water polo for Lyons Swim Club hoping to provide the swimmers with better swimming techniques, sportsmanship, and having fun!

Board of Directors