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Amy Diamond

Owner & Lead Instructor

Amy is the owner & lead instructor for Lil' Guppies Swim School.  Amy grew up on the east coast and fell in love with the water at a very young age. She was always the first one in the pool and the last one out!  Amy swam competitively from age 8 through college. She competed in butterfly, backstroke, the IM and freestyle relays and still enjoys swimming on Masters club teams. Amy has always loved working with children and so it was a perfect combination of passions to start teaching swim lessons at the young age of 15.  Amy has now taught lessons for over 25 years, and has lifeguarded and coached age group swim teams on both the east and west coasts.  She started Lil' Guppies Swim School in 2006 in Los Angeles, and recently upon relocating in 2020, has established a branch of the school in Sarasota, FL!  Amy is also an acupuncturist, children's book author, and mom to two boys, ages 12 and 6. They are the original lil' guppies and love swimming just as much as their mom! 


Meagan Richardson
Assistant Manager

Meagan joins our team from New York as both assistant manager and swim instructor for Lil' Guppies Swim School. She comes to us with over 10 years of experience. Meagan has worked as a babysitter, lifeguard and swim instructor specializing in water safety and success, and also has a background in working with special needs children. Meagan's passion for helping others continued through her volunteer work on the ambulance, and she is now a certified EMT. She is ready to jump right in and meet our families!  


Courtney Lewandrowski

Courtney has been teaching swimming to all ages and skill levels since 1990! She comes to us with a vast collection of experience as a mother, educator, and swim instructor. Courtney is an FSU graduate with a degree in Family, Child, and Consumer Science. She is also a behavioral aide for Manatee school district and has direct experience working with children with special needs both in and out of the water. 

Jennifer Nagle

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Please welcome Jennifer to our team! Jennifer will be heading our Tampa area team and has multiple years of experience teaching swimming and water safety to children ages 6 months to 12 years old. She also has experience working with adults.  Jennifer is from New York and  grew up swimming competitively on a club team and her high school varsity team.  Jennifer is in school for criminology and Spanish, and her favorite thing to do when she has free time is go to the beach! 


Rafael Rivera Sanchez

Ralph has been a swim instructor for the past six years and has experience teaching infants through adults. He is an avid water polo player!  Ralph loves to make his classes fun and creative, while still being productive and focused on water safety and the foundations of swimming. 

Mercedez Shelton


Mercedez is one of our Tampa area instructors and has been teaching swim lessons to infants-adults for the past 5 years.  She also has vast experience as as a babysitter, nanny and tutor.   Mercedez is well versed in teaching every age and skill level, including children with special needs. She has worked with many fearful beginners of all ages!  Mercedez loves teaching swimming because she gets to observe students grow & see how happy swimming makes them - it is the most rewarding part of the job! 


Katy Funk

At age 3, Katy was introduced to the water and immediately grew gills!  Katy has been swimming competitively since age 8, and by 14, began learning how to teach swim lessons to younger kids after swim practice.  Katy's summers were spent as a lifeguard and swim instructor at the Arrowhead YMCA’s summer camp. By age 18, Katy coached a summer swim team and qualified for additional certifications: Lifeguard Instructor; Swim Team Safety Training for Coaches; Community CPR/First Aid Instructor and CPR/AED for the Professional and Healthcare worker Instructor. I continued to use all my certifications through my college years.   Katy went on to start a 20 year professional career as a nurse, and recently moved to sunny FL from NJ to embark on a career in Traditional Chinese Medicine and Acupuncture. 

In her free time,  Katy enjoys visiting different parts of Florida’s west coast, visiting family, and reading sci-fi books with my 2 kitties, Bellamy and Clarke! Katy has extensive experience as a swim instructor, lifeguard and water safety and we are excited to welcome her to the Sarasota team!