Tammy DeJong, CBTF Coach
Tammy has been involved with baton almost her entire life. She started lessons at the age of four and competed as an athlete until she was seventeen in both individual and group events, and as a member of the Provincial Twirl Team. She began coaching with Ellen Cook in East St. Paul at the age of fifteen. Two years later, she took over a baton group out of Dakota Community Centre, and grew a successful club, “Tammy’s Twirlers.” It operated until she went to teach English in Japan, where she continued to coach recreational baton classes in Kitaibaraki, Japan. After two years away, she came back and taught at Dakota CC, until her oldest daughter was born. She is a certified CBTF coach and former judge. Tammy has been coaching in Aerial Fusion for the past few years and loves working with the recreational athletes. Her daughters has both twirled in Aerial Fusion and Caitlyn continues to twirl with the club! She looks forward to sharing her passion with the students at Aerial Fusion.
Leisha Strachan, CBTF Coach and M1 Certified in Acrobatic Arts
Leisha began twirling at Crestview Community Club in Winnipeg at the age of 5 (because the tap class was full) and continued for 18 years. She is a former Canadian Senior Freestyle Champion (1994), Grand National Solo and 2-Baton champion (1994), CBTF Senior Athlete and Overall Athlete of the Year (1994), and a 7-time Canadian Contingent member competing in freestyle (highest placing - 6th in 1994) and pair events garnering 2 world bronze medals for her efforts (with Kristin Macaraeg). In her time on the national team, she traveled to France, Japan, Holland, Italy, and Hawaii. Leisha is one of the founding coaches of Aerial Fusion Baton in Winnipeg. In addition to being a CBTF Level 3 coach, she is certified as a Module 1 teacher in Acrobatic Arts. She is also a certified M1, M2, M3, and Masters judge and, a highlight to her judging so far has been judging at the Catalonian National Championships in Barcelona, Spain in 2009. She has had the opportunity to coach provincial and national team members and has also choreographed for different athletes across Canada, the USA, England, and Scotland. In 2012, she coached a Trans Canada team with Kristin Macaraeg. The team represented Canada at the World Championships in France earning a 5th place finish. In 2013, Leisha was one of head coaches of Team Toba and the team went on to win the gold medal in the Level B Team division at the International Cup in Almere, The Netherlands. In 2015 and 2017, Leisha also coached with Jane at the International Cup in Abbotsford, BC and in Porec, Croatia - check the bulletin board to see how the athletes did! Outside of baton, Leisha is a professor at the University of Manitoba in the Faculty of Kinesiology and Recreation Management (specializing in sport psychology and youth development).
Jane Tan, CBTF Coach
Jane has been coaching with Aerial Fusion Baton since its inception and is one of its founding members (having coached for 1 year with Fusion Baton Club with Leisha Strachan). She started baton at the age of 5 at Orioles Community Club and continued for 11 years. In fact, Leisha and Jane twirled together in the same club, the Joycettes, from age 7 until 16. She achieved many accomplishments over the years as a twirler, competing at a provincial and national level. She cites twirling on the provincial team and traveling all over Canada as highlights of her involvement as an athlete in the sport. Jane has developed many athletes in the club who have excelled in the sport including the 2009 Junior Level A Provincial Freestyle champion. She now has a daughter who is following in her footsteps! In 2013, Jane travelled with AF athletes to Almere, The Netherlands to support and coach athletes who had qualified for the International Cup. She also coached at the 2015 International Cup in Abbotsford, BC. She was very proud to witness many personal bests and to bring home some medals for Canada! Outside of baton, Jane is the Assistant Branch manager for BMO Bank of Montreal.
Stephenie Udvar, CBTF Coach and M1 Certified in Acrobatic Arts
Stephenie began twirling at the age of 5 in Regina, Saskatchewan with the Sundown Optimist Buffalo Gals. At 8 years old, her family relocated to Winnipeg, where she began twirling with Aerial Fusion. She was provincial champion, in Junior and Senior Level A freestyle, Junior A pairs, and senior A team. In 2008, she was able to represent Canada at the World Championships in Limerick, Ireland competing in Team. She twirled competitively until the age of 19. In 2012, she moved abroad, and lived in the Cayman Islands for 3 years. Returning to Winnipeg in 2015, she quickly became involved in baton again, and began coaching with Aerial Fusion. Stephenie has successfully completed her Level 2 coaching, is certified as a Level 1 Acrobatic Arts teacher, is a Module 1 Judge, and is on the MBTSA Board of directors as Coaches Representative. Outside of baton, Stephenie is a Dental Assistant, and enjoys playing softball during the summer months.