Coaches

Home / Coaches

Iana Dakova

Head Coach/Owner: Iana Dakova — Coach Dakova has been fencing, coaching, and refereeing for over 40 years. She was a member of the Bulgarian national team from 1983-1990. She came to the US in 1997 and founded the Three Rivers Fencing Center and later in 2017 the Pittsburgh Fencers’ Club. Coach Dakova has coached numerous college and high school teams including the CMU fencing club, Winchester Thurston, North Allegheny, Ellis, and CDS. She has served on the USA Fencing Refereeing Commission and is currently on the FIE Refereeing Commission, being one of only two Americans on FIE Commissions. She also served on the Directoire Technique (Bout Committee) for the 2016 Rio Olympics.

David Galinsky

Assistant Coach (Foil): David Galinsky — David Galinsky has been fencing for over 15 years and has been coaching since 2014. He led the foil team while attending the University of Pittsburgh and coached at Pitt for a time after graduating. He’s continued to teach students of all levels and ages at Pittsburgh Fencers’ Club, as well as the Carnegie Mellon fencing club. He has recently added epee fencing to his repertoire.

Stowe Hammarberg

Assistant Coach (Saber): Stowe Hammarberg — Stowe Hammarberg fenced saber in the New Jersey area, competing interscholastically and nationally for a number of years. He was then deeply involved in the Carnegie Mellon fencing club during his time there, serving as President twice. He hopes to expand and advance the passionate Pittsburgh-area saber community.

Lynn Botelho

Assistant Coach (Foil): Lynn Botelho — Lynn Botelho started fencing as a teenager on a dare. She went on to fence for the University of Oregon at the NCAAs and then in grad school earning her “Blue” by fencing for Cambridge University. More recently, Coach Lynn has won three Veteran National Championships (2009, 2011, 2014), earned an individual Bronze at the Pan American Championships (2014), and represented the United States at the Veteran World Championships (2013-2018). She has one Individual World Bronze Medal (2016) and a World Team Gold (2015) and World Team Silver Medal (2016). She is the oldest “A” rated fencer in Women’s Foil and is a nationally-rated referee.

She is also tired and over-worked but maintains her charm through her perpetual coffee consumption. She can be found most days online writing emails.


John Carroll

Assistant Coach (Foil): John Carroll — John Carroll in his early years coached youth football in the Diocese of Pittsburgh Grade School League in addition to several youth teams while on active military duty. In 2017, Carroll assumed the position of Head Fencing Coach at Aquinas Academy of Pittsburgh where he has quickly grown the high school and middle school fencing programs. In 2018, he began assisting with beginner and youth camps at Pittsburgh Fencers’ Club. Carroll is a member of the National Federation of State High School Associations and is an Accredited Interscholastic Coach.

In 2019 Carroll was awarded the “Spirit of Sport” award by USA Fencing. The award is given to an individual who exemplifies passion, character, dedication and commitment to the sport.


Caroline Poirier

Assistant Coach (Foil): Caroline Poirier — Caroline Poirier has been fencing since 2009. She fenced at Oakland Catholic High School (2009-2013) and in the Penn State Club (2013-2017) where she was also assistant coach for the younger kids’ club.