“A coach is someone who always makes you do what you don’t want to do, so you can be who you’ve always wanted to be.”
Bruce Beall: Director of Rowing and Varsity Boys Coach
Bruce has had a storied rowing career both as a competitor and as a coach. He rowed for the University of Washington from 1970-73, where he won a silver medal in the Pan American Games in the Men’s 8+ and earned a place in the UW Athletic Hall of Fame. Among his many competitive achievements are the following:
- European Championships, Moscow 1973 Pair w/coxswain
- World Rowing Championships, Lucerne 1974 Four without coxswain
- Pan American Games, San Juan 1979 Bronze Medal Quadruple Sculls
- World Rowing Championships, 1983 Sculling Team
- Olympic Games, 1984 Quadruple Sculls
Bruce’s coaching career began in 1974 at Boston University. In 1980 he moved on to Harvard University to work with the Varsity Lightweight Men’s crew. A few years later, he worked as Program Director and Varsity Men’s coach at Massachusetts Institute of Technology. A move to the west coast resulted in a coaching position at the University of California at Berkeley from 1988-92. He coached the US Lightweight Men’s Four at the 1983 World Rowing Championships and the Heavyweight Men’s Quad at the 1987 World Rowing Championships. He was Executive Director/Director of Rowing for the first 12 years of the Pocock Foundation’s existence. He was one of the co-founders of the CRASH-B World Indoor Rowing Championships, authored the Athletes Column in the national rowing magazine for 4 years, served 2 terms on the USRowing Board of Directors, and was a member of the USRowing High Performance Committee for the 4 years leading up to the Athens Olympics. Bruce currently organizes a college recruiting fair every summer bringing 30+ college coaches from around the country in July first to Seattle and then to Oakland.
As a coach for the BIR Varsity Boys, his Lightweight 4+ earned silver at Nationals in 2013. His 2014 Heavyweight 4+ finished 8th in the nation, marking the third top-ten finish by a BIR boys crew in three straight years!
Tim Goss: Head Coach and Novice Boys Coach
Tim joined BIR as the Juniors Novice coach and as a sculler in 2008. As the program has grown, he has continued to lead the Novice Boys and has taken on head coaching responsibilities for the Juniors program. He also rows regularly with the Masters men, including most recently in the 4+ BIR sent to Head of the Charles Regatta.
Growing up, Tim’s main sport was nordic ski racing. On a whim, he first tried rowing in high school at Andover. He continued skiing and rowing at Williams College where his Lightweight 4+ was second at the Dad Vail Regatta, the division III championships at the time. After graduation, Tim coached crew at Lakeside Academy in Seattle, which included his first trip to the Brentwood Regatta in B.C. Work and small kids intervened, and apart from rowing a single in circles on Green Lake, he did little rowing until his oldest child joined the fledgling BIR club as a high school rower. Tim reconnected and has been hooked ever since, enjoying the coaching, the rowing, and the wonderful community of like-minded folks.
Nicolai Otte: Novice Girls Coach and Head Masters Coach
Nicolai took his first stroke at South Eugene Rowing Club’s summer camp. The rush of his first race at the Frostbite Regatta, in 25 degree weather, awoke something inside of him. His first 2K test boosted his confidence and willingness to endure pain, and a developing identity as a 7 seat sealed the deal.
Nico competed primarily as a Lightweight in high school but was drawn to the DIII crew program and generous dining hall of Lewis and Clark College. Morning practice on Portland’s Willamette River and 10K Erg breaks during all-nighters in the library got him across the graduation finish line with a degree in German Studies in 2009. Nico parlayed the byproducts of college rowing–a strong back and a flexible sleep schedule–into a 5 year career as an artisan bread baker, concurrent with 5 years of coaching novice for SERC/OAR in Eugene.
Over 12 years of competing and coaching Nic has rowed and worked under more than 30 coaches and has raced throughout the West Coast in every boat class. Though he can recall almost every race, victories at Brentwood, San Diego Crew Classic, NW Junior Regionals, NW Conference Championships, and WIRA stand out, fueling his passion for sharing this sport with athletes of all kinds.
Nicolai is thrilled to be living on stunning Bainbridge Island and continuing his professional development alongside such committed and knowledgeable coaches!
Megan Ledoux: Girls Varsity Coach
Megan changes hats this fall, beginning her position as Girls Varsity coach. Previously, Megan taught the weekend Learn to Row Intensives and the four-week Masters Learn to Row Programs. She coached Beginning Masters Sculling, Novice Masters Sculling, and Masters Novice Sweep Programs.
A second-generation rower, Megan began rowing at Los Gatos Rowing Club when she was 15, rowing in both their Lightweight and Open Weight programs. After racing up and down the west coast for two years, she moved on to coxing Men’s Lightweight and Open Weight programs at the Division I level at Oregon State University. This move to coxing gave her another perspective of rowing in a very competitive conference—not to mention an education in dealing with men!
After a break from the sport working in Marketing at Eddie Bauer, as a Labor and Birth Educator/Labor Coach at Evergreen Hospital, and as an Executive Trainer, living overseas and raising a family, Megan returned to rowing and coxing with the BIR Masters. She has enjoyed reacquainting herself with the sport, competing in the Masters program and medaling with them at the Regional level. One of Megan’s daughters became a third-generation rower by rowing at the Junior level and racing at Nationals twice. She went on to be recruited by and rowed Division I in college. This gives Megan an unusual perspective in the sport as she is not only a rower, a coxswain, a Masters competing athlete, and a coach herself, but also the parent of a Junior rower who successfully underwent the college recruitment process and emerged as a D1 athlete with a scholarship.
Megan and her husband have lived on Bainbridge Island for over 15 years and have raised three children in this community. Her oldest “kids” are in college and waiting to hear about graduate school. Her youngest is a Junior at BHS and runs Cross Country. While raising her kids and working, Megan has worn many volunteer hats including PTO President, Mothers to Mothers Board Member, and Girl Scout Leader, and she currently serves as a member of BHS’s Cross Country Board. Megan is looking forward to using all of her experience in rowing in addition to her previous working experience to help further all the junior athletes with whom she works.
Olivia Gangmark Strickland: Varsity Girls Assistant Coach
Olivia Gangmark Strickland is a graduate of the BIR Juniors program and Western Washington University. At college, she studied toxicology and chemistry in preparation for dental school. She received her Bachelor of Science from the Huxley College of the Environment in 2017.
Olivia rowed for two years at Western Washington University, where her boats brought home national honors in both 2013 and 2014. In 2014, Olivia’s four earned a Division II National Championship title.
Olivia has coached for BIR for five summer seasons. She has had the privilege of working with BIR’s Learn to Row groups, the Masters, and both Novice and Varsity girls. While her love of rowing is intense, Olivia finds teaching and coaching to be even more rewarding. She is grateful to the BIR community for helping her to achieve her goals. Olivia likes that, among the many life lessons that rowing offers, rowing teaches the qualities of selfless teamwork, technical precision, and perseverance.
David Miller: Varsity Boys Assistant Coach
David grew up on Bainbridge Island. He attended the Madrona Waldorf School, which was founded on the island, and spent his senior year at Bainbridge High School. He joined BIR his senior year as a Novice rower with no prior rowing experience, and after 3 weeks under the coaching of both Bruce Beall and Tim Goss, was recruited to row at the University of Washington. He rowed for 2 years at UW and then decided to take time off from school. During that time off he coached the BIR 2014 summer program alongside fellow BIR alum and UW rower James Erving, and became Bruce’s assistant for the remainder of the season.
David currently works a full-time job as a low-voltage electrical technician for a security company in Seattle and has just recently moved back to Bainbridge Island. He is looking forward to continuing his coaching experience as Bruce’s assistant for the upcoming year and for the foreseeable future.
Tom Coble: Assistant Masters Coach
Tom came to rowing indirectly through his son who rowed in high school and at university. He came directly to the sport after retirement and soon moved from sweep boats to sculling, where you will find him when on the water today.
Tom was President of the BIR Board from 2010 to 2013. He is currently serving on the Board as liaison with the City of Bainbridge Island for the Rowing Center.
Tom and his wife Linda have been a part of the Bainbridge community for 20 years. Prior to that, Tom was a partner in a Behavioral Consulting firm headquartered in Los Angeles until his retirement in 2009. Tom has a B.A. from California State University in Communications and a Masters in Human Resources and Organizational Development from San Francisco University.
When not on the water or in the boatyard, Tom can be found chasing fish with a fly rod, singing with the Bainbridge Chorale, making a mess (and good food) in the kitchen, and trying to keep the forest at bay from the house.
Helping Bainbridge Island Rowing continue to grow and succeed is his passion.