Coaches and Staff

Coaching Staff
Adam Katz Head Coach & Director

Coaching Experience: 22 years of coaching expertise. Adam has experience in USA Swimming and Collegiate.

Years with LESD: 4

Coaching Accomplishments: Adam's has developed athletes for Zones, Sectionals, Juniors and Olympic Trials. along with fostering State Champions. He was recognized by The News-Herald coach of the year three times.

Personal swimming experience: "I was a swimmer for LESD and Hawken growing up.  I was a State Champion and six-time All-American. I continued my career at Indiana University and THE Ohio State University.."

One takeaway you want to pass onto your swimmers: "To work hard, and have fun! It’s a tough sport and you need to find the joy in the hard work, day after day."

Other Interesting facts: "Enjoy spending time with my family, traveling, and playing as much golf as I can."

Jelani Watkins Head of Age Group Coach

Coaching Experience: 10 years of coaching expertise. Jelani has experience in USA Swimming, Middle School, Summer Leage and Collegiate.

Years with LESD: 1

Coaching Accomplishments: Jelani was recognized in 2017 as Atlanta's Swim Association Coach of the Year and was the founding Head Coach of the Atlanta University Center Tigersharks.

.Personal swimming experience: "I was a Georgia high school state-qualifying swimmer for all four years of high school, while swimming for the City of Atlanta Dolphins and Fulton County Swordfish swim teams. Upon finishing high school, I attended Morehouse and worked with former teammates to restart the swim programs serving three of the Atlanta University Centers schools. After graduating, I was hired as an Aquatics Director, continuing the collegiate club program and offering free and reduced-cost lessons for youth in the Atlanta community. I continued coaching with the DeKalb Aquatics swim team and working at Morehouse until I moved to the Cleveland area. Here, I worked with the Shaker Sharks Swimming Team for four years, before finding my new home with the Lake Erie Silver Dolphins."

One takeaway you want to pass onto your swimmers: "Don't just take your mark. MAKE your mark." If you rise to the top and you don't have the strength to bring your teammates up, then it wasn't worth it.

Other Interesting facts: "I'm a musician... an artist, even when coaching. So don't be surprised if you hear a big, baritone voice making music as you swim!"

Matthew Kenosh Red, White & Blue - Hawken Lower
Zach Switzer Bronze - Orange & Hawken Lower
Thad Schultz Head Site Coach - SPIRE

Coaching Experience: 26 years of coaching expertise. Thad has experience in USA Swimming, Collegiate and FINA swimming.

Years with LESD: 3

Coaching Accomplishments: Thad's swimmers have advanced to Olympics, Junior, Senior Nationals and achieved NCAA All-American.

Personal swimming experience: "I swam at West Virginia University and was a National Champion in 1992."

One takeaway you want to pass onto your swimmers: "Swimming can be a life-long way of staying fit, healthy and goal oriented."

Other Interesting facts: "My dog is awesome."

Rick Balcam Head Site Coach - Mayfield

Coaching Experience: 26 years of coaching expertise. Rick has experience in USA Swimming and High School.

Years with LESD: 16

Coaching Accomplishments: Rick has coached Jr National qualifiers and state champions.  He was named Northeast Ohio High School Division 1 Coach of the Year .

Personal swimming experience: "I was a swimmer for LESD and then swam collegiately at Edinboro University."

One takeaway you want to pass onto your swimmers: "Swimming provides such great life lessons!  With dedication, hard work, and sacrifice anything is possible."

Other Interesting facts: "I enjoy traveling with my wife and fishing with good friends."

David Bocci Head Site Coach - Butler, PA

Coaching Experience: 20 years of coaching expertise. Dave has experience in USA Swimming, Collegiate and High School swimming.

Years with LESD: 5

Coaching Accomplishments: Dave's swimmers have advanced to Junior and Senior Nationals and High School Record Holders.

Personal swimming experience: "I was an NCAA DIV 2 All-American swimmer at Edinboro University."

One takeaway you want to pass onto your swimmers: "The sport of swimming is a long journey and you can't ever get to high with the highs or to low with the lows.  Just keep moving forward."

Other Interesting facts: "I love being involved in the sport. I like to lock arms with individuals who have high goals and look to me to help them get to where they want to go."

George Bare Head Site Coach - CVAC

Coaching Experience: 19 years of coaching expertise. Bill has experience in USA Swimming and Middle School coaching.

Years with LESD: 8

Coaching Accomplishments: Bill has coached several age group champions and state champions and record holders.  He has also coached several swimmers who have gone on to swim in college, including a Big 10 champion.

Personal swimming experience:  "I grew up swimming at the Chagrin Falls Rec Center and then started with University Swim Club with Mark Bran and Tim Hable when I was 7.  I switched to LESD when I was 12 swimming with Jerry Holtrey until I finished my swimming career after graduating from DePauw Universiyt."

One takeaway you want to pass onto your swimmers:  "Always give your best effort to get better."

Other interesting facts:  I am married to a former swimmer (Jeremy Neal Bare) who I have known since I was 7.  We have two daughters, Libby and Syndey, who are swimming with LESD."

Administrative Staff
Sam Steinhouse Chief Financial Officer
CJ Musser Chief Administrator
Marie Salibra Team Manager