Meet our SVST Coaching Staff

Jake Mefford - Head Coach

​Jake has been swimming since the age of 5, beginning with the Martinez Community swim team, then with Pleasant Hill Dolfins. At age 12, he moved to swimming year-round with the Terrapins and was a member of their national team. He swam for Acalanes High School and was a finalist at NCS for back and fly events each year. After a break from the pool, he started swimming again with Walnut Creek Masters. Since getting back into the sport he received the Pacific Swimming Swimmer of the Year award, All American for 100 and 200 back,and has a record on the board for Pacific Swimming Masters, and placed in the top three for backstroke events at USMS nationals.

As a coach, in addition to his role at Sun Valley, Jake is also coaching with San Ramon Valley Aquatics (year around swimming program). Some Rays may also recognize him from his prior coaching role at Oakwood Athletic Club. When Jake is not swimming, he is usually cooking and working on developing new recipes, and would love to write a cookbook someday!

Jake is a big believer in technique as the foundation of the sport and look forward to seeing the swimmers improve as the summer progresses.  He also has a healthy competitive side and is passionate about teaching swimmers how to race.  As a huge fan of the sport of swimming and all the science and physics that influence the ability to move around in the water, Jake is excited to share his in depth knowledge of swimming and in general be a part of the program at Sun Valley this summer.

Chris Schulz - Co-Head Coach

Chris will be co-head coaching the team alongside Jake. He has coached at both Scottsdale Swim Club and Dewing Park Swim Team with experience at all ages and has been swimming competitively for over a decade. Chris’ swim career has taken him through the Walnut Creek Swim Conference, USA Swimming, and to the NCAA level. He is currently on the club swim team at the University of Utah where he is majoring in philosophy with honors.

Chris is looking forward to having conversations about the similarity between teaching new concepts in swimming and Galileo's difficulty in convincing the public we live in heliocentric orbit. He is a firm believer in the pool being a classroom where swimmers are encouraged to speak up when they are confused, would like help, clarity or additional instruction. Finally, he firmly believes in technique over times! Together our Rays and Coach Chris will convince our competitors we live in a heliocentric state (w/ Sun Valley at the center; podium. ;-))

Ava MacKay - Assistant Coach

Coach Ava dominates the SVST record board.  This girl can swim fast!   A lifelong Ray, stellar student, and sparkling personality, Ava has been helping coach her fellow Rays the since she was a 15 -18 swimmer and will be a fabulous addition to the Coaching staff this summer.  This Fall, Ava enters her junior year at Chico State studying business.