Our Staff

YMCA OF GREATER SPARTANBURG Staff

 

Rick Callebs, CEO


YMCA of Greater Spartanburg

Rick earned a B.S. in Physical Education from Berea College in Kentucky. His 30-plus year YMCA career began in Sommerset, KY, and continued in Corpus Christi, TX, Bainbridge, GA, and Greenwood, SC. Rick has been with the YMCA of Greater Spartanburg since 2004. 

Fun Fact: Rick was the president of the boys choir in 8th grade.

 

Jerry Dixon, Branch Executive Director, Middle Tyger YMCA

Jerry has been a Y CEO for the past 16 years. Most recently in Ashland, Kentucky, Jerry has worked in YMCAs in Florence, SC, Nashville, TN and South Florida. Jerry will began his tenure at the Middle Tyger YMCA on September 1, 2013.



    

Rene McCurdy, Branch Executive Director

Thomas E. Hannah Family YMCA

Rene came to us from the YMCA of Greenville in January of 2013. With a number of years with the YMCA and a background in marketing, graphic design, advertising, project management and fitness, Rene was most recently our Director of Development, helping us fulfill our mission through successful fundraising. Rene also teaches a variety of group exercise and indoor cycling classes.

 

 

Debra Garner, Finance Director

YMCA of Greater Spartanburg

Debra has been with the Y since 1997. She went to school at Spartanburg Community College and USC with a major in accounting.

Fun Facts: Debra loves to travel and her hobbies include scrapbooking, fish aquariums, and beading.

 


Cassie Lloyd, Social Responsibility Director

Thomas E. Hannah Family YMCA

Cassie earned her B.A. in English at Appalachian State University and her M.A. in school counseling at Gardner-Webb University. She began her career in sales and marketing and taught high school English and art before joining the Y as a yoga instructor in 2010. She became the Marketing Director in March of 2011 .

Fun Fact: Cassie lived in seven different states while she was growing up, including Virginia, Connecticut, Missouri, Nebraska, North Carolina, Illinois, and Michigan. She loves cycling and hiking and she spends almost every weekend outdoors with her family.

 

 

Sheila Conder, Accounting Assistant

YMCA of Greater Spartanburg

A Spartanburg native, Sheila has worked with the YMCA of Greater Spartanburg since 1991. She attended USC Columbia and USC Upstate, and worked for 10 years as a secretary for School District 7 before her YMCA career began.

                                      
 

Atticus Fehl, Youth Development Director

Thomas E. Hannah Family YMCA

Originally from Pittsburgh, Atticus went to Wofford College in Spartanburg where he received his B.S. degree in biology. His YMCA history includes lifeguarding and teaching swimming lessons, as well as leading the Membership department before moving into his current role. He has been with the YMCA of Greater Spartanburg since 2006.

Fun Fact: Atticus has taken a lot of Botany classes and can identify many native SC plants to genera and species. He also enjoys cycling, skateboarding, and being outside.

 


 

Bart Simonson, Aquatics Director & Age Group Site Coach

Thomas E. Hannah Family YMCA

Bart attended Winthrop University and graduated with a B.S. in Physical Education. Bart began coaching swimming with the Upper Palmetto YMCA Rays swim team, where he coached for four years. Bart produced many AG Sectional and AG Zone qualifiers during his tenure at Upper Palmetto. He joined the Y Spartaquatics Swim Team coaching staff in September 2012. While in college, Bart managed two pools with Carolina Pool Management. He became Aquatics Director in the Spring of 2014.

Fun facts:  Bart has two Australian shepherds and has won at least 5 eating contests (that he admits to).

 

 

Brian Helsel, Healthy Living Director

Thomas E. Hannah Family YMCA

Brian is from Grand Rapids, MI, where he worked as a personal trainer, wellness coach and group exercise instructor at the YMCA of Greater Grand Rapids. Brian earned his undergraduate degree in Clinical Exercise Science from Grand Valley State University and his master's degree in Exercise and Sports Medicine with a focus in Exercise Physiology from Western Michigan University. Brian uses his passion for helping people achieve their goals to create innovative and fun programs in the areas of Wellness, Membership and Adult Sports.

Fun Facts: Brian loves endurance sports, especially trail running. He started competing in triathlons in 2008, and will compete in his first Ironman in August of 2014. He also has a great appreciation for art and music and he enjoys going to museums and music festivals.

 


Amy Smith, Membership Director

Thomas E. Hannah Family YMCA

Amy has a BA in Psychology and an MS in Human Services Community Counseling from the State University of  New York at Oswego. She began her Y career in early 2012 with the Northwest Family YMCA of Columbia and joined the Thomas E. Hannah Family YMCA in late 2012, but her Y roots go back over 20 years ago to high school when she worked with other teens in an outreach program run through the Auburn YMCA in New York state. Before starting her Y career, Amy taught at the college level for more than ten years and prior to that worked as a Teen Health Educator and a Chemical Dependency Counselor.

Fun factsÖ Amy was involved with Karate as a young teen and participated in sparring competitions. As an adult, she's had some poetry published.

 

Alison Chism,

Director of Youth, Adult, and Family Programs

Middle Tyger YMCA

Graduated with a B.S. in Physical Education with a specialty in Health Promotion from the College of Charleston in SC. 

Worked for 3 summers at a camp in Sweden, Maine, and most recently for the Charleston County School District before coming to the YMCA. 

Fun fact: nationally certified water ski instructor and loves anything outdoors.

 

Sherry Johnson, Wellness Director

Middle Tyger YMCA

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Jennifer Wilson, Membership Director

Middle Tyger YMCA

After graduating from high school in Florida, Jennifer moved to North Carolina to attend Gardner-Webb University.  While at Gardner-Webb, she worked in various roles with the Cleveland County Y for 3 years. She graduated with a bachelorís degree in Psychology and a minor in the YMCA Professional Studies Program. Through the YMCA program, Jennifer was able to complete the requirements to be a Senior Director in the Y.  Jennifer has been with the Middle Tyger YMCA since 2006. 

 

John Bartolone, Facilities Director

Thomas E. Hannah Family YMCA

John graduated from high school in Woodstock, IL. He was an independent manufacturer's representative for several fitness equipment companies for 17 years. Before he moved to Spartanburg, John worked as the facilities director at another workout facility in Columbia, SC He came to the Spartanburg YMCA in October 2009.

 Fun Fact: John grew up near Chicago and has four children. He loves to play golf and cook.

 

                                     
 

Steve Wilson, Facilities Director

Middle Tyger YMCA

Steve has been with the Middle Tyger YMCA since 2007. A local high school football and track star, Steve has coached youth sports leagues and helped countless young people get involved with the Y. He has two adult sons.

Cool Fact: Steve opens the doors every weekday morning well before the official 5am opening to let folks get an extra-early start on their workouts.

 

Peter Wright Head Swim Coach

Y-Spartaquatics Swim Team

Originally from Overland Park, Kansas, Coach Pete was raised in Westfield, NJ where he spent 11 years swimming for the Westfield YMCA. Pete graduated from Oberlin University in 1993 with a BA in Biology and History. After college, Pete worked at the Ridgewood YMCA in New Jersey and at the Mecklenburg Aquatic Club before joining the Middle Tyger YMCA in 2002. He is married to the lovely Meghan Wright and has a daughter, Scarlett.

Fun Fact: Pete is a devout Kansas City Chiefs fan and loves to collect live music.   

 

 

Ben Pulskamp, Senior Coach

Y-Spartaquatics Swim Team

Coach Ben Pulskamp comes to YSSC from the Summerville Marlins Racing Team in Charleston, SC.  Ben worked at SMRT for three years primarily working with their GOLD Group.  Ben brings an energy and spirit to the pool deck that can only be described as infectious.   You may recognize Benís name, because it graces many of our YSSC Y-National team banners that hang at MTY.  Ben had the pleasure of being coached by Pete his Senior year in High School and is very excited to be back to learn some more.  Ben was a multiple finalist at Y-Nationals excelling in the 100 and 200 butterfly. 

Ben was a four year scholarship swimmer for the Seahawks at UNC-Wilmington.  While swimming at UNCW he was awarded the Most Outstanding Swimmer Award his sophomore year and was named team captain his senior year.  Benís desire for excellence and passion for the teamís success will be invaluable as he helps lead the Cuke Senior program into the future.  Letís Go Cukes!!!


 


 

Scott Stephens, Head Age Group Coach

Y-Spartaquatics Swim Team

Coach Scott comes to YSSC from YCSC in Columbia, SC where he was one of their strongest age group coaches the past 4 years.  He has coached  State Finalists, State Champions,  Age Group Sectional Finalists, Zone Finalists,  SC Select Camp members and SC Zone Team Athletes.  He served as a 2012 and 2013 SC Zones Assistant Coach as well as a 2012 SC Select Camp Coach.  Scott brings a passion for developing young people into great swimmers, while helping them understand the long term plan for achieving their goals and beyond.    

Scott attended Wingate University where he was a scholarship athlete for four years and a Division II All-American.  He was also 6 time All-Conference in the 100 and 200 Butterfly and also a conferece finalist in the 100 Breaststroke.  YSSC is excited about having him on board with the Cuke way of swimming!

 

 

Ted Pierson, Swim Coach

Thomas E. Hannah Family YMCA

Swim Coach - Thomas E. Hannah Family YMCA Coach Ted was raised in the suburbs of Washington DC, where he swam for John Flannagan at the Alexandria Y Flying Fish, and was a member of the 1990 short course Y-National championship team.  He continued his swimming career as a walk-on at Virginia Tech, where Ted lettered all 4 years and was a conference finalist the final 3 years he swam.  Va-Tech was where Ted began his coaching career as an undergrad assistant while he was finishing up his degree.  In the fall of 1995, Ted moved back to the DC area to coach with Sea Devil Swimming.  Coach Ted comes to the YSSC program from Raleigh NC, where he was the Head Senior Coach at the Ravenscroft Site for the Marlins of Raleigh.   Coach Ted is happily married to his wife, Kirstin Lemme, and has twin daughters, Gianna and Farrah. 
Fun Fact: In his free time Ted is a musician, playing the bass guitar.  He is also an avid supporter of all sports teams from the Washington DC area, particularly the Washington Capitals.