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Our Coaches

Our coaches are here to support your needs. If your questions are related to workouts, meets, events, goal setting, and other swimming related needs, please contact head coach Karyl Palmer at


Karyl Palmer

Waukee Rays Head Swim Coach

Karyl has been involved in competitive swimming at the Waukee YMCA since 2005. And this year takes over the Senior Coach Role providing program oversight and coaching the Discovery group.


As a youth she swam at Valley High School in West Des Moines, IA and in college at Winona State University. Swim honors include holding seven school collegiate records.


Karyl has only ever coached for the Rays, her favorite team! In addition to coaching swim Karyl is also a substitute teacher at Dallas Center-Grimes, typically three days a week. She also keeps busy with her family which includes her husband, Gayle, and two sons, Jared (17) and Bryce (14).


Karyl’s says her coaching highlights include watching the kids grow to love the sport as much as she does. She loves seeing our kids overcome obstacles, make amazing choices, take on responsibility and become better individuals because of the self-discipline they learn through swimming. She says she loves her job!


Dan Briggs

Waukee Rays Swim Coach

Dan is a previous head coach for the Waukee Rays (2005-2009) who went on to start a varsity swim program with the Waukee High School. He has been coaching for over 15 years and is a lead coach for the Advanced group.


Dan participated on the Jefferson Summer Swim Team as an age group swimmer and later on the Boone High School Swim Team. He was a three time MVP swimmer on his high school team and held four school records at the same time. He finished his swimming career as a two year state qualifier and placed on the 200 Free Relay.


Coaching highlights for Dan have included being named the Iowa High School District Coach of the Year twice and coaching swimmers that earned the YMCA State/Regional Team Titles as well as individual and relay champions! He says seeing young kids grow up into fine young men and women and sharing the Rays experience with his family and community. Dan’s son Cameron was one of the first 17 kids on the Waukee Rays team in 2005.


When Dan isn’t poolside he can be found spending time with his family that includes his wife, Tiffany and children: Cameron-16, Kiara (12), Caleb (9), Calvin (CJ)-(6), Corbin (3) and Kambria-(4 months). He is also a chemistry Teacher at Waukee High School.

Sarah Noser

Waukee Rays Swim Coach


Rena Skoog

Waukee Rays Swim Coach


Margie Hales

Waukee Rays Swim Coach

Margie grew up in and around the water. Starting in school she participated on the swim team and progressed to teaching swim lessons. When she began working in the United States in 1999 she became a lifeguard and Water Safety Instructor and eventually a Lifeguard Instructor Trainer. Today in addition to her coaching and her day job as an American Red Cross as a Training Specialist in Preparedness Health & Safety, she continues to teach Adults to swim.

In 2007 she started coaching part time with a recreational league and a girl’s high school team in Tennessee and later in Michigan following another move. In 2011 she coached for the Marshalltown YMCA Blue Waves,  before joining the Waukee YMCA Rays team as a coach in 2014.

She says it is hard to narrow coaching highlights because she has been so lucky to have so many. But she said she thinks a highlight for her is when a swimmer works hard and accomplishes their goal. She shared that coaching and teaching people to swim are two of her most rewarding times in and around the water.







Coaching Staff