GJ tabs Janet Ryan as girls swimming coach

Grand Junction High School didn’t have to look far for a girls swimming coach.

The Tigers hired Mesa County School District 51 adaptive physical education teacher Janet Ryan on Monday to replace Dale Leonhart, who resigned earlier this fall.

Leonhart, who left to seek other opportunities, coached the Grand Junction boys and girls swimming programs for 21 years.

“I always knew I’d get back into coaching once my kids grew up,” Ryan said. “I don’t know much about the team now, but I’m excited to get to know the girls and get back in it.”

Ryan coached club swimming programs for more than 19 years in Grand Junction, Meeker and Craig. She started the Grand Valley Wave Club program with the help of some parents in a pool in her backyard in 1993.

She was the Fruita Monument boys and girls swimming head coach from 1988 to 1991 before resigning to spend time with her children.

Fruita Monument’s girls coach, Jessica Haley, replaced Leonhart as the District 51 Griffins boys coach earlier this month.


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