Coaches and Directors

Coaches and Directors
Coaching Staff
Timothy Hickey Head Coach

Coach Tim grew up in Rochester where he was a competitive swimmer from the age of 8. He was an All-American swimmer at Rochester Adams HS and continued on to swim at Purdue and Oakland Universities.  Coach Tim has had vast success coaching for nearly 30 years at Adams HS with multiple state champions and All-Americans.  Adams has won numerous League titles and one State title under his direction.  Most recently Coach Tim was the Head Age Group coach of USSC where he led the 12 and under program to top 3 finishes in the state for the last 8 years.  He is very excited to begin this new journey in his coaching career with Royal Swimming. 

Katie Sullivan Swim Team Director

Coach Sullivan has been a part of the swimming community for 25 years! She brings with her a wealth of knowledge from her experience that ranges from learn to swim all the way to the National Level. Coach Sullivan started swimming in the mid 90's. She went on to be a part of the Oakland Live Y'ers, Adams High School and the woman's swimming and diving program at EMU. At EMU is where she learned to love coaching. Since then she has coached High School (most notably Rochester Adams, D2 MHSAA 2019 State Champions), Club swimming ( NOW- Head coach, BBD assistant coach & Liquid Lightning- Age group Head Coach) and as an Assistant Coach for the Men's and Women's Swimming and Diving Program at Oakland University.

Coach Katie's swim team philosophy is to create an environment where swimmers thrive as athletes and as great members of the community. She believes this is acheived through a focus on technique, hard work and commitment to one's self while uplifting your fellow teammate. 

Zach Ortiz Head Age Group Coach


Zach has been part of the swimming community for more than 17 years. He started his swimming career in Texas at the age of 5 and by the age of 10, he got his first individual state cut in the 50 meter backstroke. By the age of 11, Zach had move up to place 2nd in state of Texas, and 7th in the nation in the 200 yard butterfly.

Zach continued to grow as an athlete and committed to swim for Oakland University in 2015. During his collegiate career, his primary events were the 400IM, 500 Free, and the 1650 Free.

Zach’s enjoys coaching because it gives him an opportunity to give back to the community the skills and knowledge that he learned over his 17 years of swimming. Zach enjoys being able to help build character in the young athletes that he coaches so that they can become contributing members of society.

Zach's philosophy on coaching is that proper technique, a strong mind, and determination is the key to success.

Kelli Custer Novice 1 & 2 Lead Coach


Kelli has been a part of the swimming community for over 30 years. She started swimming at the age of 7 and competed through her senior year in high school. Kelli started teaching swim lessons and coaching beginners during high school. She learned of her love for the sport and has continued to coach and teach swim lessons ever since. Kelli brings to us her vast knowledge and expertise from age group swimming to the high school level (Florida and Michigan high schools).

Kelli’s philosophy is develop a swimmer to the best of their ability both in the water and as a person. Help them understand their potential, how to set goals, and become the person they envision.

Tanner Robertson Intermediate group coach
Ben Davis Junior Group Lead Coach

Coach Ben comes to us Oakland University, where he is studying Mechanical Engineering. He is a Senior and distance freestyler on the Men's Swimming and diving team at Oakland where he placed 1st in all of his events last year at the Horizon Conference meet. Coach Ben is the lead coach for the Junior groups.

Eric Heim Lead Franklin Coach
Board of Directors