SBSC Coaching Staff

Michael Bechtholdt Head Coach

Coach Mike is in his first year at the Santa Barbara Swim Club.  An ASCA Level 4 Coach, Mike has guided swimmers from all levels of the sport, from beginners to Olympic Trials qualifiers.

Mike, whose swimmers have gone on and competed at the highest levels that the sport of swimming has to offer, came to SBSC with over 2 decades of club coaching experience with stops at Riverton Aquatic Team in Wyoming, as well as the Southern California teams of Canyons Aquatic Club, Westside Aquatics, and Los Angeles Swim Club.

Coach Mike has been involved in the swimming community for more than thirty years.  Starting out as a swim instructor at the age of 14, he has coached HOA, high school, and club programs to success as well as served as vice-chair of the Pacific Committee.  Mike has served as an SCS all-star coach and has been invited twice to accompany his athletes to the Olympic Training Center as a Home Coach while they participated in the National Diversity and National Junior Team Select Camps.

Mike competed for the University of Wyoming, where he earned valuable experience as an NCAA D1 athlete.  The University of Wyoming is also where he earned his bachelor's degree in Education.  Later, he earned a master's degree in Education and Curriculum from Concordia University Irvine.

Mike feels "extremely lucky to be working with swimmers at the Santa Barbara Swim Club, doing what he loves, in one of the coolest places on the planet."

"I am fortunate to be a member of SBSC and the Santa Barbara community where I will be able to help the next generation attain their goals and do things they didn't know they could." 

When not coaching, Mike spends as much time outdoors with his wife Dianna, and daughter Francesca.

JJ Jones Head Age Group Coach

Coach JJ grew up in Hemet, California where he swam for the Hemet Valley Dolphins from the time he was eight years old until leaving for college. He swam in college at U.C. Santa Cruz where he was conference finalist in the 500 free two years in a row. After graduation from U.C. Santa Cruz in 1998 with a B.A. in History, he helped coach the swim team for five years. As the assistant swim coach for U.C. Santa Cruz JJ coached the distance group and the 400 I.M.ers; out of this group, seven All-American swims were produced. While coaching for the University JJ also coached for the USS swim team in the area, Cabrillo Threshers. At Cabrillo the junior group and the pre-senior group were his primary focus. While coaching the college students and the age group swimmers Coach JJ also coached for Santa Cruz Masters. Coach JJ moved to Santa Barbara in 2004 and is the Advanced Age Group Coach at Los Banos.

Coach JJ is currently entering his 17th year coaching for Santa Barbara Swim Club. During his tenure he has coached many SBSC swimmers to success. Many of his swimmers have made various Southern California All-Star teams such as, Pacific Coast All-Stars, the North American Challenge Cup (NACC) and Festival. ASCA Level 3. JJ was appointed to coach at the 2007 Western Zone Select Camp. JJ has coached Western Zones (2005-2006) and  the North American Challenge Cup (NACC) (2007-2014) for Southern California Swimming. All these levels of swimming have taught JJ a lot about coaching the sport and about life in general. Coach JJ enjoys reading and watching movies in his spare time and would like to see how far his coaching can take him. Coach JJ lives in Santa Barbara with his wife Sarah who is a lecturer in the writing program at U.C. Santa Barbara.

Tod Joossens Assistant Coach

Coach Tod, ASCA Level II and National Accredited Interscholastic Coach with NFHS is from the Orlando Florida area where he has coached swimming and water polo for almost 20 years. His club and high school swimmers have experienced various levels of success including FHSAA state champions in individual events, All-American, and Scholastic All-American swimmers. Additionally, Tod has coached with PEAK Performance Swim Camps across the country.

As an age-group coach, Tod had the opportunity to coach alongside his high school and club coach at Southwest Aquatics in Winter Garden, FL, who later served as his mentor allowing Tod to become the coach he is today. As an age-group coach, Tod has coached multiple Florida Age Group top-three finishes in long and short course seasons, an Age Group NSCA champion, and a swimmer in the 2016 World Paralympic Games in Mexico City. He has coached many swimmers that have become collegiate athletes including his own son who represented the 2015 NJCAA Champions at Indian River State College.

In his lifetime, Coach Tod has played soccer, wrestled, and rowed in the National Schools’ Championship Regatta, in a coxless pair (2-), finishing in the top ten. He first began swimming year-round under Olympic Gold Medalist Fred Tyler in Winter Garden, FL at the age of ten, becoming a distance freestyle. In addition to swimming, Tod found time to participate in Cub Scouts, Boy Scouts and eventually becoming an Eagle Scout at the age of 13. In 1988, he represented the state of Florida in water polo at Junior Nationals. Tod graduated from the University of Central Florida with a BA in History. He has served in the U.S. Navy Reserves and Florida National Guard. Before moving to California, he taught high school World History, Economics, and Humanities for over 16 years, including one year as a Functional Special Education teacher. He and his wife Christine have four grown children: twin sons Connor and Parker, daughter Ramsey, the youngest son, 20-year-old Hayden, grandson Milo, and two dachshunds.

Nancy Schley Assistant Coach

Nancy began coaching for SBSC in October 2020, but she is no stranger to our deck.  From 1987-1999, Nancy coached under Coaches Larry Liebowitz, Ira Kline, and Joe O'Brien.  During that time, she coached at Los Banos and acted as the Head Age Group Coach at Cathedral Oaks Athletic Club Satelite.  Nancy has helped swimmers achieve JO times and be placed on SCS All-Star teams. Before moving to Santa Barbara, Nancy coached at Cherry Hills Country Club in Colorado.  Nancy has been selected as an SCS all-star coach and has helped to provide stroke analysis with Nancy Schleuler to the U.S. National team at USC.  She also currently volunteers as a Coach at Dos Pueblos High School.

Nancy began her swimming career at age 9 in Tennessee, competing in both club (Tri-City Barracudas) and high school where she earned All-American status.  After high school, she went on to compete at East Carolina University, earning Collegiate All-American recognition.  From college, Nancy started competing in triathlons, earning national and international professional sponsorships as an ultra-distance competitor.

Nancy hold's a Master's Degree in Physical Therapy (CSUN) which qualified her to work as an outpatient physical therapist which she still puts to use as a private P.T. counselor today.  In addition to her P.T. business, Nancy serves as a director and officer for the Mountain View School Foundation which she and her husband Mike founded.

Nancy says, "I enjoy helping swimmers to find and realize their potential.  Many of life's lessons can be learned through hard work."

Nancy and Mike have two children at home who all enjoy playing tennis, riding horses, and backpacking in the Sierras together.  Nancy is a trained leader for BSA Troop 26 (Santa Barbara) with certifications in Advanced Wilderness Life Support and Safe Swim Defense.

 

 

Aaron Schlemovitz Gold and Senior White Coach

Coach Aaron swam for Somerset Hills YMCA (SHY), now known as Greater Somerset County Y (GSCY), for 10 years under Coach Peter Barry who coached and helped teach Aaron how to coach.  Coach Barry was the 2012 YMCA Coach of the Year and has coached kids to various levels of swimming.  While at Somerset Hills Aaron’s accolades include: placing top 16 at YMCA Nationals in Freestyle and IM events in 2013, 2014, and 2015, won New Jersey Meet of Champions 500 Freestyle in 2015.  Aaron swam in college for a year at Southern Methodist University (SMU) for Eddie Sinnott and Mitch Dansky. Aaron was primarily a distance freestyler, Flyer, and IMer.

While in high school Aaron began giving swim lessons and working with a group who taught children with autism how to swim and learn water safety. In High School Aaron began coaching a summer league swim team for a few years. When Aaron returned home he began coaching at Berkeley Aquatic Club under Jim Wood, a former USA swimming President. At Berkeley Aaron taught lessons in the learn to swim program as well as originally working closely with the Senior Group on underwater video corrections, later on moving into a role of being the lead coach for a number of groups that ranged from ages 9-18.  Aaron's swimmers qualified for zones, junior nationals, and senior nationals. Aaron’s final coaching stint in New Jersey had him coaching at a Lifetime Fitness, running the Dolphins and Bronze group as well as being the assistant coach for two others. Again, Aaron's swimmers found success, qualifying for zones, futures, and junior nationals, as well as finishing the season in the age group top ten in multiple events.

If Aaron is not coaching he enjoys listening to music, reading, biking and swimming. Willing to talk music all day with anyone! Aaron is currently attending University of California Santa Barbara to finish his undergraduate degree.