Meet Our Coaches
Head Coach & Director of Programs
Yan is a former member of the Ukrainian National Rowing Team, and a graduate from their top sports institute. From 1973-1991, he coached the Soviet Union Junior Women’s National Team. In 1991, Yan and his family immigrated to the United States. He has coached at the Norwalk River Rowing Club, Fairfield University, and the Saugatuck Rowing Association. In 1996, Yan and his wife, Olga, founded the Water Sports Center and Maritime Rowing Club, both of Norwalk, CT. Yan coaches all levels and is most recognized for his work with the high competitive teams and their numerous achievements on the junior national level. In December 2011, US Rowing recognized Yan and Olga with the John J. Carlin Service award. Chosen by the USRowing Board of Directors, the award honors an individuals, who have made significant and outstanding commitments in support of rowing.
Head Coach, Novice and Intermediate Boys
Olga is a former Open World Champion and Russian National Champion. She has extensive experience as a rowing coach. From 1980-1991, she coached at the Specialized School of Olympic Reserves in the Ukraine. After coming to the United States, Olga coached at the Saugatuck Rowing Association, and, together with Yan, founded the Water Sports Center in Norwalk. In December 2011, US Rowing recognized Olga and Yan with the John J. Carlin Service award. Chosen by the USRowing Board of Directors, the award honors an individual, or individuals, who has made significant and outstanding commitments in support of rowing.
Girls Team Coach
Yulia graduated from Lesgaft National University of Physical Education with a degree in Sports and Health. Yulia worked as a consultant at the Strela boathouse and the Dinamo Rowing Club in St. Petersburg prior to her position here at Maritime Rowing Club. She is a Russian National Champion with 1st places in both the Women’s senior 4x, and the Women’s Senior 2x. As a member of the Russian Senior National Team, she earned 6th place in the Women’s Senior 4x at the World Championships in Poznan held in 2009. Yulia has competed with the U23 Russian National Rowing team, and as a member of the Coastal Rowing Russian National team she placed 2nd in the Women’s Senior 2x at the World Championship in Coastal Rowing in Bari.
Director of Rowing Programs and Novice and JV Boys Team Coach
Sharon joins the Maritime Rowing Club coaching staff after many successful years of leading the Saugatuck Rowing Club’s juniors and masters. During her time at SRC she led numerous crews and athletes to top finishes at Youth Nationals, Club Nationals, Head of the Charles, San Diego Crew Classic and Masters Nationals. She has also sent many junior athletes to row at top level colleges as well as the U19 and U23 World Championships.
Sharon graduated from Rutgers University with a B.S. in Exercise Science and Sports Studies and is a 3 time USA National Team member, placing second at the 1998 U23 World Championships in the 4- and 4th at the 2005 World Championships in the 8+. She also has top finishes in the 1x and 2x at US Nationals, Canadian Henley and Head of the Charles.
Assistant Coach - Novice and JV Boys
Johnston began rowing at the Maritime Rowing Club in 2009 where he competed for the club until graduating from New Canaan High School in 2013. He attended Ithaca College where he was a member of the rowing team for four years and Team Captain for both his junior and senior years. During his tenure as an Ithaca Bomber, he had the unique experience of participating as both a rower and a coxswain. Johnston spent his summers coaching at MRC and has now returned in a full-time capacity to aid in the training of the nation’s next generation of elite junior athletes.