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Head Coach - Heather Swan

One of Heather's stipulations when selecting a college was that they have a novice crew team. In 93' this led her to attend Drexel University in Philadelphia where she became team captain her first season on a winning novice crew.  Her senior year of college she went on to learn sculling with PGRC and Bachelors Boat Club on the historic boat house row competing at the national level for 4 more years. After a 12 break Heather came back to rowing as an assistant coach at the Waynflete school in Portland Maine and is now very excited to be a part of the Mendota coaching team. Heather can also help excel your land training as she is a certified yoga, health and fitness coach!

Heather can be reached at hswan@mendotarowingclub.com



Coach - Sara Krizan

Sara, a Madison native, found her passion for rowing while living in SeattleWashington, where she learned to row in 2011 and earned a seat on the Lake Union Crew nationally competitive women’s team, with whom she rowed for three years. During that time, Sara also led yoga classes for her fellow rowers and served as an assistant coach for adult learn-to-row classes. Since returning to Wisconsin, Sara has continued to row as a member of the Milwaukee and Mendota Rowing Clubs, and is a US Rowing Assistant Referee. She is delighted to be back in Madison and is enthusiastically looking forward to coaching with the Mendota Rowing Club.

Sara can be reached at skrizan@mendotarowingclub.com


Coach - Silke Van Der Weide

My name is Silke (pronounced Silk-ah) and I was first introduced to rowing in middle school learn-to-row. My interest in the sport grew exponentially as I progressed onto varsity rowing in high school and was eventually elected as a co-captain for my team. Before I graduated, I underwent a hip replacement and re-evaluated my passions and strengths which led me to receive a technical degree in Therapeutic Massage with an emphasis on proper body mechanics. I am currently working on my Bachelor’s degree in Communications and I enjoy making stained glass pieces in my free time. I look forward to utilizing my background in rowing and muscle function with the club. I am very excited to learn from everyone at Mendota! 


Assistant Coach - Nate Colgan

Nate first started rowing with his dad when he was 10 on the Schuylkill River in his hometown of Philadelphia, PA and quickly fell in love with the sport. In high school, he rowed for The Shipley School, primarily in the Varsity double and won a gold at the Stotesbury Cup and bronze at scholastic nationals in that event. He then rowed at MIT for four years as stroke seat in the freshman and varsity eights and served as team captain in his last two years there while studying Aerospace Engineering. Over the summers he raced for the Vesper Boat Club in Philadelphia, winning gold in the U23 8 at Canadian Henley and Club Nationals, and also competed in the 19th Maccabiah Games in Israel, winning golds in the four and pair. After college he coached the MIT novice men's team for one semester, then completed a master's degree at the University of Illinois at Urbana Champaign and assistant coached the novice team there as well. He moved to Madison in 2018 and is currently completing a PhD in Nuclear Engineering at UW-Madison. Nate rows with the MRC master's team in the summers and looks forward to coaching as well.


Assistant Coach - Lorenzo Miller

Lorenzo is a third year student at UW Madison studying Biochemistry with the intention of attending medical school. He is from Wilmette, IL and has been rowing for 7 years. He rowed for his high-school team, New Trier Rowing, and is currently on the UW team.

His senior year in high-school he placed 3rd overall at the Head of the Charles regatta in the Men’s Youth 8 event sitting in seven seat. His freshman year at UW he competed in the varsity 4 at the IRA regatta sitting in 2 seat, placing 15th overall. 

Lorenzo enjoys spending time with his friends, listening to music, and playing the saxophone. He is determined to continue his rowing career as an athlete and as a coach, and hopes to share his knowledge and experience with others!


Assistant Coach - Ashley Wright

Ashley is a third year student at UW Madison studying Life Sciences Communication and Sports Communication. She is from the greater Cincinnati area, rowing for the Cincinnati Junior Rowing Club through high school and competed for 2 years both on the UW Women’s Lightweight and Openweight teams.

When she was an athlete, she placed 5th in the country the Youth Lightweight 8+ in 2015, 3rd in the country in the Youth Ltwt 8+ and 1st in the Youth Varsity 8+ at Head of the Hooch in 2016, 4th in the country in the Youth Ltwt 8+ in 2017. In her college career, she placed 4th at the 2020 Big Ten Championships in the 1st Novice 8+.

As a coach, Ashley strives to form relationships with her athletes on and off the water. She is excited to continue coaching and learning from the athletes she works with.


Assistant Coach - Sarah Navin

I am currently a student at UW-Madison studying biology with intentions to attend Physical Therapy school. I am from Menomonee Falls, WI and grew up playing volleyball and basketball before starting my rowing career. I attended a summer learn to row camp at UW-Madison and fell in love with the sport. I rowed briefly at Milwaukee Rowing Club during my senior year of high school before continuing my academic and athletic career at UW-Madison. I have raced in the first novice 8+ and second varsity 8+ during my time at Wisconsin and am excited to share all that I have learned with the athletes at Mendota Rowing Club! 


Assistant Coach - Amanda Triebensee

Amanda was a freshman walk-on at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. She is majoring in Kinesiology and planning on entering the chiropractic field. She is from Plymouth, Wisconsin. Prior to rowing, Amanda was a competitive runner and dancer. In her collegiate career she has raced in the 2nd Varsity 8+. As a coach, Amanda hopes to share her love for rowing and hard work by helping her athletes become the best person they can be- both on and off the water. She is so excited to begin coaching with Mendota Rowing Club!


Assistant Coach - Galen Quinn

I started rowing in High School at New Trier in the Chicago River, and after a few months of learning the basics, I fell in love. I currently row at UW - Madison for the Badgers and have competed in the Varsity Men's 8+ since Freshman Spring Season. I aim to graduate with a Bachelor's of Science in Computer Science, and there's no better place to study/train in than Madison! As a Coach, I want to keep things simple and help rowers achieve their goals one at a time. I'm excited to evolve my coaching philosophy through Mendota Rowing Club, and become a better rower and coach in the process.


Assistant Coach - McKenna Passini

I am a former MRC juniors rower; I have been rowing for about two years and was able to go to Youth Nationals in a straight 4 that placed 8th overall.  Everyday I continue to practice and get better so that I can pass on my expertise to the next generation of youth rowers wanting to go to nationals!  I will be attending MATC and then transferring to UW - Madison to get a degree in Kinesiology (the study of body movements).  I hope to keep seeing the MRC juniors improve exponentially every year so they are able to test out their skills at Youth Nationals!


Assistant Coach - Jack Austin

I started rowing the summer of of 8th grade, which was 5 years ago and I haven’t been able to stop ever since. I was invited to the U.S Rowing Olympic Development Camp in Chattanooga, Tennessee during my sophomore year of high school. This camp showed me how to push myself to the max while also focusing on how to be a better technical rower. 

After a year of Covid, no races, and remote training, I was finally able to race and train with a team again. My 2- ended up taking 8th in the nation at U.S Rowing youth Nationals and my 4- took 13th in the nation. 

My goal is 1) to share my knowledge of rowing with the athletes and guide them through the sport that changed my life forever and 2) make this club accessible to anyone, no matter socioeconomic status, race, or where you live. Helping and coaching Stem 2 Stern camps has really instilled this drive in me, so that everyone can enjoy this fabulous sport! 

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Mailing Address:
PO Box 646
Madison, WI 53701

Boathouse Address:
622 E Gorham St
Madison, WI

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