Chris Wolford
Head Coach

Chris Wolford comes to New Trier Aquatics after 2 years as Head Coach at Carolina Aquatics and 3 years with South Carolina Swimming as Sports Performance Director. In his time with South Carolina Swimming, Wolford advised clubs on training and administrative issues, designed and ran the state’s select camps for its top swimmers and consulted with the LSC on policies and programs to improve competitiveness.

Prior to moving to South Carolina, Wolford was Head Coach for the Cincinnati Marlins from 2000-2017 where he grew the club from 170 to over 500 members and added water polo to the suite of programming. From 1996-2000, Wolford was Head Coach for the Greater Toledo Aquatic Club and St. Francis de Sales High School where he grew the club from 60 to 170 swimmers and served as Assistant Water Polo Coach to a team that won 4 consecutive state titles. Wolford successfully grew these clubs while maintaining the highest levels of performance.

Laszlo Hruza
Director of Water Polo

Laszlo comes to New Trier Aquatics with a wide range of coaching experience throughout all ages and skill levels. The Hungarian native built a well-known reputation of developing players and programs both domestically and internationally. He coached on four different continents and his players continuously compete and won in the NCAA, University Games, World Championships and some even made Olympic teams for various Nations.

Currently, he is a FINA lecturer, conducting coaches’ clinics around the world in his free time. In addition, recently he worked with the International Olympic Committee’s Solidarity program to reestablish a sustainable water polo program in Barbados and this fall in Ghana.

In Illinois, he worked tirelessly with numerous programs and athletes to try to grow and elevate the prestige of Illinois Water Polo. He has worked with several high school and club programs and helped many athletes to get to the collegiate level. He even started an “elite” water polo training session where he invites the top players from around the State for some high-performance training.

On the colleigate level, he worked with Arizona State University and Michigan State University - the latter to back to back Big Ten Championship (2008, 2009) and to the National Championship (2008). He also, earned the prestigious Big Ten Coach of the Year Award in 2009.

"I am very excited to get this opportunity with New Trier Aquatics. The club’s vision for water polo is unparalleled in the State of Illinois or even in the Nation, and I’m so honored to lead it. As a director of Water Polo, I can promise you that I will work tirelessly to help every single athlete to reach their full potential, not just as an athlete, but as a successful member of our community."

Jeremy Meserole
Director of Swimming Ops

Jeremy comes to New Trier Aquatics after a 10 year stint as a Head Site Coach with the Academy Bullets Swim Club. While with Academy, Jeremy oversaw the growth and development of swimmers from Bartlett, Schaumburg, and the surrounding areas. In his time there, he coached several state champions and record holders, over a dozen Winter/Summer Junior Qualifiers, two Olympic Trials Qualifiers, and saw one of his swimmers selected to Team Canada for the 2022 Junior Pan Pacific Championships.

While Jeremy was coaching with the Academy Bullets, he was also the Head Coach of the Co-Op HS team out of Bartlett and Streamwood, where the girls team there broke every school record multiple times. Both the boys and girls team saw their first state qualifiers in 5+ years, the Sabrehawks Girls Team placed 7th at the IHSA State Meet in 2016, and Jeremy was named IHSA Sectional Coach of the Year in 2017.

Prior to coaching with Academy, Jeremy coached with New Trier Aquatics from 2008-2012. Primarily responsible for all 13-14's in the NTA program, Jeremy led several of them to Top 10 finishes, and coached two NCSA Qualifiers and one Summer Junior Qualifier. The NTA 13-14's were consistently among the top 50 in USA-Swimming's Virtual Club Championships.

Before his first run with NTA, Jeremy was the Head Coach/CEO of the South Central Swim Team in Wisconsin. In his four years with the SCST, Jeremy oversaw the expansion and growth of a team that almost tripled in size, culminating in a 8th place finish at the Wisconsin Senior State Championships prior to his departure.

In his 20+ years as a coach, Jeremy has helped over 40 swimmers go on to compete for college teams in both the US and Canada.

Jeremy was a member of Illinois Swimming's Age Group Committee from 2011-2022, and is now a member of the Governance Committee.

Kristen Tanakatsubo
Business Manager

Kristen started her career with NTA in 2016 as a yoga teacher with the Senior High Performance training group. Over the next 2 years, Kristen worked with the team to expand the benefits of yoga to several other training groups throughout the program. In 2019, she took on a full-time role as the team's Business Manager to keep the dry side of the program running smoothly.

Away from NTA, Kristen's coaching experience is in figure skating. She has been a registered USFS (United States Figure Skating) coach for over 20 years with a focus on singles/moves in the field, synchronized skating and Theatre on Ice. She has worked to develop skaters of all ages, abilities to achieve their recreational, test or competitive goals. She believes that a solid foundation of basics no matter the sport leads to advancement and precision in athlete growth.

Brendan Hulseman
Meet Director

Brendan coaches within our Senior Groups, and he is also our Meet Manager. He swam for NTSC (2007-2016) under the direction of Bob Kizer, Kyle Bubolz, and Andrew Hodgson. He graduated from Loyola Academy in 2012, where he was a multi sport athlete excelling in swimming and water polo. In 2011 and 2012, he was an All American on the all of the Relays for Loyola Academy. Brendan attended St. Louis University where he continuted to excell in pool as varisty member from 2012-2016. He was school record holder on all the SLU Relays as well as 200 Freestyle and 100 Butterfly. Brendan earned his degree in B.S. Buisness Administration with a concentration in Sports Buisness. After graduating from SLU Brendan served as the general manager for Cyclebar in Evanston. He also currently serves as an assistant coach for the boys water polo coach at Loyola Academy. Brendan currently resides in Lincoln Square and when he is not on the pool deck you may find him on a bicycle, as he is an avid rider.

Greg Hartman
Director of Safety

Throughout his coaching career, Greg has proudly guided swimmers to multiple Club Team Records, ISI Regional, ISI State, Central Zone, Speedo Sectional, NCSA National, USA Junior National, USA Senior National, and Olympic Trial Levels. Many of his former athletes have moved on to compete and excel at the collegiate level. Greg believes in a "Think, Swim, Fast, Win" philosophy. This philosophy lends the various aspects of commitment and hard work developed through the sport of competitive swimming to overall development of an individual. This belief provides the competitive athlete an experience that will extend well beyond the pool.

Greg currently holds an ASCA Level IV coaching level, is a current American Red Cross Lifeguard Instructor, a legistative member with Illinois Swimming Inc. on their Safe Sport Committee, and is the Lead Aquatics Specialist at Evanston Township High School. He graduated from the University of Illinois at Chicago in 2002 with a B.S. in Kinesiology. Greg currently resides in Norwood Park with his wife, 2 daughters, and his dog.

James Helm
Age Group Coordinator

James restarted his coaching career working long course seasons with the Lincolnwood Lightning several years ago. Most recently, he was with the Iguanas Swim Club (Chicago) where he was an extremely successful lead age group coach.

Coach James has proven track record of developing proper stroke technique had the unique opportunity to work with and successfully develop swimmers of multiple skill levels. He is extremely excited to bring his energy, passion and love of swimming to New Trier Aquatics. Helm has been privileged to work with multiple Club Team Record Holders, ISI Regional, ISI State, Central Zone and Speedo Sectional Levels qualifiers and Champions.

James is a native of the south side and attended Mount Carmel High School (Chicago) where he swam and played water polo all four years. Helm continued his swimming career at the University of Findlay (Ohio), excelling in short distance sprints. He was an individual record holder, National Qualifier and member of four school record setting All-American relays.

In his spare time when not coaching swimming, basketball or baseball, Coach James enjoys spending time with his family and walking his disobedient dog, Daisy.

Rob Stafford
Tryout Coordinator

Rob is excited to be coaching with NTA ! He previously spent 2 years at Big Blue Aquatics. He began his swimming career at the age of 8 for Willow Knolls Country Club in Peoria, Illinois. Shortly after, he began swimming year round for Brian Points of Docs Swimming and continued every year in high school. After high school, he found his passion for teaching swim lessons while at the University of Iowa. While teaching swim lessons, he worked individually with swimmers to improve their skills and successfully achieve goals of swimming competitively. In addition, he has previously worked with adults with special needs and specialized in developing adapted swim programs for non verbal adults and children with autism.

Rob believes swimming is an inclusive sport that teaches lifelong motivational skills and patience. As a coach his philosophy is to highlight the unique traits of each athlete, have patience in their development of proper swim technique, and build a fun and safe enviroment. He also believes strong communication between parents, athletes and coaches is key to success ( a trait taught in one of the many lessons from his mom, a lifelong teacher). His humor and unique approach to the development of the athlethes can be seen in many of his workouts.

Rob resides in Northbrook. In his sprare time he can be found bass fishing and kayaking in one of the many surrounding Forest Preserves.

Apostolos Karagiannis
Water Polo Lead Coach

Coaching philosophy

"A team above all. Above all a team."

Previous club experience

New Trier High School, JV Girls Water Polo Coach, January 2016 – January 2019
Nautical Club of Patras, Swim Instructor, June 2002 – August 2013

Career Highlights

Swimmer until 17 years old (from 1988 to1997 ) at Nautical Club of Patras

Swimming Best results:

  • 1st in 1993 and 1994 western division Boys U14 championship in 100m and 200m Breastroke
  • 1st in 1995 and 1996 western division Boys U16 championship in 200m and 400m IM
  • 10th in 1996 Greek National championship Boys U16 in 400m IM
  • 4th in 1997 Greek National championship Boys U16 in 200m freestyle
  • Professional water polo player in several WP Clubs of Greece from 1999 to 2013.
  • Played in Greece’s A1 and A2 Pro-Divisions and B semi-pro Division, Greek Water Polo Cup and the European LEN Trophy Cup

Water Polo Best results:

  • Captain of Nautical Club of Patras U18 team that finished 8th in the National Greek U18 Championship in 1999
  • Thriamvos Club of Patras A2 division 3rd place in 2003
  • Nautical Club of Patras A2 division 3rd place in 2006, 2nd place in 2007 promoted in A1 division
  • Nautical Club of Kalamata B division, 3rd place in 2009
  • Club of Nireas Lamias B division, 1st place in 2012, Champions, promoted in A2 division
  • Club of NE Lamias B division, 1st place in 2013, Champions, promoted in A2 division
Chris Kearney
Swimming Lead Coach

Chris is a former National qualifier and State Finalist as a Loyola Rambler, specializing in the freestyle events. As an athlete, Chris was also part of the Illinois Swimming LSC Board and was a passionate advocate for athlete rights. A scholarship athlete at Miami of Ohio, Chris has a passion for Astronomy and a penchant for random trivia and fun facts. He also currently trains with our Semi-Pro group as he continues a casual competitive career.

Lindsey Parr
Swimming Lead Coach

Lindsey grew up swimming at age 6 in Boulder, Colorado. She went on the study and compete at John Carroll Univeristy in Cleveland, Ohio. While at JCU, Lindsey won multiple conference events and was awarded the Clyde Lamb Award conference award for athletics and academics. She graduated with a degree in English and Exercise Science and five school records in her name. After graduation, she moved to Raleigh, North Carolina and quickly joined the TAC TITANS coaching staff. In her four years with the TITANS, Lindsey worked primarily with the age group program including both the elite 11-12 and 13-14 groups as well as the advanced 9-10 year olds. Lindsey's coaching philosophy centers on creating strong technical skills for all four strokes and actively creating swimmer engagement during practice. When not on deck, Lindsey enjoys staying active, working on her hand-lettering, and exploring new places with her husband. She is excited to be a part of New Trier!

Brian Solmos
Swimming Lead Coach

Brian has been an invaluable assistant coach with our program and we are excited to have him lead our Bronze groups! He was a state & sectional qualifier as a swimmer and a Varsity swimmer & polo player at Loyola. He is currently studying engineering at Northwestern & also enjoys caddying on the weekends at local golf courses!

Jen Wolford
Swimming Lead Coach
 

Bio coming soon...

Josh Queyquep
Strength & Conditioning Coach

Bio coming soon...

Lauren Burns
Water Polo Coach
 

Lauren is starting her coaching career after playing water polo as a goalie for Adlai E. Stevenson High School ('16) and Brown University ('20). During her time at Stevenson, the team placed 1st and 3rd in State, getting her named to the All-State Team. She participated in Junior Olympics with NIPC and the Olympic Development Program before being recruited to Brown. At Brown, she was named "Rookie of the Week" and "Defensive Player of the Week" three times by the CWPA. She graduated in 2020 with a degree in Health and Human Biology and is transitioning to work in Data Science. She looks forward to passing on her water polo knowledge to the next generation of athletes.

Sarah Crewe
Swimming Coach
 

Sarah Crewe is an All-American and All-World Age Group triathlete who has been racing all triathlon distances and World Championships, including competing in Masters swim meets, for over 30 years. After a 16 year career as a Private Banker in Chicago, in 2007 she moved and changed careers—starting an Age Group swim team in Ruidoso, NM. In addition to her USA swim Level 2 certification, she certified as a USAT coach where she coached triathletes in NM before moving back to the North Shore, where she joined NTA as an Age Group coach in 2014. Sarah also coaches Masters swimmers at Life Time Fitness and lives in Glenview with her husband, Patrick Connor, and their daughters, who played Water Polo and swam with NTA.

Marie Antoinette Flores
Swimming Coach
 

Marie Antoinette Flores hails from the Texas border city of El Paso. Marie started swimming at the early age of 4 years old and was in competition by the age of 6. Joining a top private international team, El Paso Aqua Posse, Marie swam competitively for all of her childhood, high school and one season at UT Austin. Marie was a four time Texas Age Group Swimming champion from 1988-1992, and was a long time Southwest region record holder for girls 10 & under 200 meter IM and 100 meter Butterfly.

Marie chose to follow the performing arts upon entering her second year of college and moved from Austin to Chicago to pursue a Bachelors in Vocal Performance and Theater from Roosevelt University. Ms. Flores has performed in many Chicago theatre/opera productions and can be heard in various voice over spots in local and national commercials.

Marie Antoinette loves being a part of the New Trier Aquatics Coaching team and is delighted to be working in an inclusive, nurturing and dynamic swimming community.

Max Grodecki
Swimming Coach

Bio coming soon...

Robert Juhas
Water Polo Coach
 

Robert hails from Pancevo, Serbia, and started playing water polo at the age of 7. He was a member of the Youth Serbian National Team, and went on to play for the First Serbian League and Salem University, WV, where he earned a Masters Degree in cybersecurity. Robert has coached water polo teams in both Serbia and the NCAA. In addition to coaching for NTA, Robert works in IT in Chicago.

David Lieberman
Water Polo Coach
 

David has been teaching science at Glenbrook South HS for the last 23 years. In his time at GBS, he has amassed a 409-205-5 record as the Head Coach of the Boys Water Polo team, and he is also an Assistant Coach of the Boys Swim Team. The Boys Water Polo team was conference champions in 2008 and 2019, qualified for state in 2008 and 2009, and placed 3rd in the 2008 State Tournament. David has coached 6 all-state athletes and 2 all-american athletes at GBS.

David has a B.S. in Chemistry from the University of Michigan. He lives in the area with his wife and two kids.

Jacob Lloyd
Water Polo Coach
 

Bio coming soon...

Matt Wendt
Water Polo Coach
 

Bio coming soon...

Nate Wolford
Swimming Coach
 

Bio coming soon...

Keith Yavitt
Water Polo Coach

Bio coming soon...