Our Team

People love working for SwimKids! Our employees are part of the family, and your children will consider them part of yours, too.

We take great pride in being a top workplace, attracting the best employees the world of swimming has to offer. Our turnover has remained low over two decades because we appreciate our people and have built a group of dedicated swim instructors that are teachers at heart. Helping children learn to swim with the SwimKids system and watching them succeed gives us immeasurable satisfaction.

SwimKids carefully selects instructors based on criteria proven important to the success of our company’s values. This includes not only their general interaction with children in the pool, but also a dedication to improving every child’s swimming technique, no matter their development level. We also continuously observe our instructors and offer ongoing training. Like the swimmers they teach, our instructors are always improving their technique.

Our diverse team comes from multiple backgrounds. Some were competitive swimmers, like our co-founder Dave Tonnesen. Others became SwimKids instructors after first being SwimKids students!

Our entire talented staff comes to work every day happy to help more children embrace the joy of swimming.


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Dave and Cindy Tonnesen

Founders Cindy And Dave

SwimKids co-founder Cindy Tonnesen has won numerous entrepreneurial awards and most recently the United States Swim School Association Humanitarian of the Year Award in 2019.  Cindy and Dave are active members of the United States Swim School Association. 

Her co-founder and husband (and lifelong swimmer), Dave Tonnesen, has coached many thousands of swimmers from baby lessons, to Olympic trials. Among his many honors, he has received commendation for his work with the Special Olympics.

Together, Cindy and Dave built SwimKids up from swim lessons in their backyard pool into a thriving local business. For more than two decades, they have dedicated themselves to teaching children to swim and unlocking a love for the water in every student.

Our Talented Staff
Dolphin Dave Local Neighborhood Dolphin
dave tonnesen portrait
Dave Tonnesen Co-Founder
Cindy Tonnesen
Cindy Tonnesen Co-Founder
Krissy Bartlett
Krissy Bartlett Regional Manager
allison griffin
Allison Griffin General Manager, Gainesville
Chris Draper GM of Woodbridge and Fredericksburg
Berlin Cunningham General Manager

Interested In Joining the Team?

Our team is growing. Apply to become one of our amazing, life changing, team members today.

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