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HRCA's team of qualified coaches is here to guide swimmers to excellence in the pool. 

Coached Aquatics Administration

Kerri McGrath

Coached Aquatics Coordinator
I swam summers on a recreational swim team in Kansas City, Missouri and competitively in high school. I was a swim lesson instructor and swim coach for YMCA's in Missouri, Illinois, and Massachusetts.  I coached swim club and team as the Youth Swim Coordinator for The Clubs at River City in Peoria, IL.  My favorite part of coaching is helping young swimmers develop quality stroke technique, build endurance and find a love for swimming.

[email protected]  |  303-471-8942 

Kiersten Johnson

Aquatics Program Specialist
I was born and raised in Colorado, went to Smoky Hill High School, and graduated from the University of Northern Colorado in 2019. I swam competitively from the age of 8 until I graduated high school. I graduated with a degree in Recreation, Tourism, and Hospitality, and have truly found my calling working as the Aquatic Program Specialist at HRCA. It is such a privilege getting to assist with putting the coached programs together, while also getting to be on deck coaching! I have had a lifelong love for swimming and being in the water – my favorite summers were spent at swim meets every weekend and swimming in Lake Michigan with my family. My favorite things outside of work and swimming are spending time with my dog, watching hockey and cheering for the Colorado Avalanche, and climbing 14ers! My favorite stroke is freestyle (backstroke a close second) and my favorite event was the 500 free. The best thing about coaching is seeing swimmers gain more confidence in themselves as they progress in technique and speed, while developing a true love for swimming!

[email protected]  |  303-471-8892 

Aquatic Coaches

Megan Bartels
I am Megan Bartels and I grew up in Highlands Ranch playing competitive soccer, running, skiing, and golfing. My swim experience started freshman year at Highlands Ranch High School when I joined the swim team in addition to cross country and soccer. I joined swim with very little experience because I wanted to meet new friends and take on the challenge of learning a new sport. With the help of amazing coaches, Seahawks summer swim, and club swim, I made the decision to continue swimming at the College of Saint Benedict in Minnesota where I also study exercise/health sciences and nutrition. My specialty is breaststroke and IM. I am excited to return as a coach this summer and look forward to fostering a safe and fun environment, teaching everything from stroke fundamentals to other technical details that will help each swimmer improve. My goal as a coach is to inspire a love of sports (especially swimming) as a way to grow, develop new skills, and embrace being a part of a team. Go Seahawks!

Michael Botyarov
I was born in Pennsylvania, but I have lived in Colorado since I was 3, so I call myself a native. I started swimming competitively at the age of six and continued to do so throughout college until I joined USMS. Nowadays I enjoy swimming long-distance freestyle, however, my favorite events were the 500 free, 200 free, and 200 butterfly. Shortly after college, I transitioned into long-course triathlon, most recently competing in the 2022 Ironman World Championship in Kona, Hawaii. Given my experience in multisport, my coaching approach is centered around data and optimizing performance at the individual level, meaning the emphasis is placed on interval training while incorporating technique work to improve swimming efficiency. I enjoy working with adults of all swimming abilities to help them feel more confident in the water and achieve their athletic goals.

Kelton Burns
My name is Kelton Burns, and I’ve lived in Colorado for about 17 years now, but I was born in Arlington Heights, Illinois. I started swimming when I was ten with no experience whatsoever, only knowing how to tread water for just a couple of minutes. At first, I wasn’t sure about it, but by the end of my first season of summer swimming, I had fallen in love with the sport and aspired to be a coach. Over time, I became more and more connected with the sports, primarily focusing on technique in my strokes until I finally had the skills to be a coach and to know what to look for in swimmers. I have been and always will be a 100 freestyler, but my coaches over the years have claimed me to be an IMer, due to my technique in all the strokes. I currently attend Rock Canyon High School in Highlands Ranch, and while I don’t currently have time to swim on a team, I always try to stay in touch with the sport (outside of coaching) even when I have very little time. As a last note, my favorite part of coaching is definitely the improvement that I see in my swimmers. Seeing them listen and apply my advice is extremely rewarding, and that behavior is something that makes all coaches feel appreciated! 

Molly Citrin – As a girl who has been living in the water since I was 7 months old, I am thrilled to join the HRCA team as a swim coach. My competitive career started at age 7 on HRCA Seahawks, and transitioned to Highlands Ranch Aquatics when I was 8. At 14, I joined the Heritage High School Varsity team. My swimming experiences taught me that proper technique comes first. Times will get faster once you slow down to master good technique. Throughout my swimming journey, I have also learned several valuable life lessons — time-management, discipline, confidence, and passion. Outside of swimming, you will find me in the outdoors skiing, SCUBA diving, hiking, whitewater rafting, and perfecting my underwater photography.

Joel Dahm – Joel was a swimmer and coach in North Carolina before recently moving to Colorado. When he isn’t coaching Seahawks, you can find Joel teaching Elementary PE.  Joel’s passion for teaching quality stroke technique, having fun with the swimmers, and watching swimmers improve is evident when you see him on deck or in the pool.

Riley Davis – Riley grew up in the Highlands Ranch area and was a Seahawk swimmer. She returns for her 3rd season and is as a Seahawks Summer Co-Head Coach with Lea. She recently graduated from UNC with her education degree.  You’ll often find Riley swimming in the adult group before practices. 

Trevor Ewert – Trevor is a student at Valor Christian and is looking forward to sharing his years of competitive swim training with newer swimmers to the sport. When Trevor isn’t in the pool, you may ask him about his recent mission trip to Alaska where he helped with the Iditarod Sled Dog Race or his upcoming mission trip to Rwanda.

Ceyda Sarak – I started swimming when I was 6 years old in Istanbul, Turkey.  I moved to Colorado in 2014 where I swam at the YMCA and the 2016 Summer Seahawks Swim Team. I swam competitively with HRA in the National Group specializing in Breaststroke and sprint events. When not swimming, I am a state-qualifier on the boys wrestling team at Mountain Vista High School and plan to study Mechanical Engineering.

Lea Haetwig
I have spent most of my life in Highlands Ranch, but I was born in California and have lived in Germany as well. I started swimming when I was six. I went through the whole HRCA swim program, from Learn to Swim to Elites, and swam Seahawks in the summer. I was also on the Mountain Vista girls’ swim and dive team. My favorite stroke is freestyle, and my favorite event was always the 50 free. I recently graduated from the University of Hawai’i at Manoa in the spring of 2022. My favorite thing about coaching is having fun with the swimmers!

Jeff Lingle
Jeff grew up in Long Beach, CA and spent most of his childhood shooting hoops, surfing, and doing tricks on his BMX bike. Although an active kid, Jeff fell into some sedentary habits for a few decades as an adult working in IT. To counteract some of these bad habits, Jeff discovered a love of swimming and doing triathlons in 2014! One of the constants in Jeff’s life over the past eight years has been HRCA’s Ranch H2O masters swim program on Tuesday and Thursday mornings at 6:30 a.m. Jeff is an accomplished open water swimmer and triathlete, finishing Horsetooth 10k races in 2019 and 2021, and finishing Ironman Arizona in 2018 and Ironman Wisconsin in 2022. His two favorite places to swim are the gravel pond at Chatfield Reservoir and Wellington Lake. Jeff’s favorite stroke is freestyle – in the open water! His favorite thing about coaching is seeing students integrate healthy long-term exercise and mental habits into their lives.

Collin Sheppelman
I started swimming competitively in 2018 as a freshman in high school. I started coaching in 2019 have loved doing it. I also am a high school swim official. Currently, I go to MSU Denver and study cybersecurity.

Deborah Slavec
I started swimming and competing for Arizona Country Club in 1958; a long time ago! At age 12, I started swimming for Desert Rats and Phoenix Country Club. I swam for Xavier in high school, and graduated from Arizona State University in 1975. I joined Colorado Masters at South Suburban in the ‘90s and started teaching swim lessons for HRCA in May of 2002. I have been coaching Highlands Ranch Seahawks since 2005 and have loved and enjoyed it ever since. So many fantastic memories of swimmers who have learned to swim and compete in the pool. My favorite stroke has always been freestyle, and I’ve competed in the all the sprint events my whole life. I look forward to another summer coaching and giving these swimmers as many skills as they can use to become the best they can be!
-Fun facts: Jewelry designer, trail hiking, biking, love dogs and horses, LOVE being a grandmother, and a mother to 2 fantastic people…Danny and Faryl.

Devyn Yates
I’m Devyn, and I’m a Colorado native! I swam on Seahawks for several years when I was younger, and I love the 50 free along with breaststroke. I love working with all ages and skill levels, and getting to see the swimmers’ improvement over time has to be the best part of coaching! I’m an early grad from Arapahoe High School, and I’m planning to attend college in the fall for secondary education.