Mark Ruiz, Head Coach
Mark Ruiz is the head coach for YCF Diving. Mark grew up in Toa Alta, Puerto Rico. He took up diving at the age of 9 and moved to Orlando as a 12 year old to pursue his dreams of diving and be a part of a better training program. He chose Team Orlando Diving, now YCF Diving.
By the age of 15, Mark became the youngest diver, behind Greg Louganis, to finish second at a US Nationals. After that, he won 9 Junior National Championship titles and won the 1994 Sullivan Award, the most prestigious award given an amateur athlete. At the 1999 US Nationals he swept all three events, 10M Platform, 3M Springboard and 1M Springboard, becoming the first diver since Greg Louganis to accomplish this feat. He became the most decorated diver in US history. Then, Mark won the 1999 Pan Am Games gold medal, and made the 2000 and 2004 US Olympic Teams. He was the only American diver, other than Louganis, to make the US Olympic Team on both 3M and Platform. Ruiz finished 6th and 7th at the 2000 Olympic Games and 7th on Platform at the 2004 Olympics. He was named 2000 US Olympic Committee Male Diver of the Year and 2 time US Diver of the Year. Mark was a 22 Time US National Champion. He remains among the top 5 most accomplished medal winning divers in American history.
Mark Ruiz attended Dr. Phillips High School. He won 4 High School State Championships, and held the National High School Record for over 10 years. Mark trained with Jay Lerew at Team Orlando Diving. In 2003 Mark began his own Mark Ruiz Diving Camps and Clinics available to divers all over the country. Mark’s world class knowledge, experience and enthusiasm have made his camp one of the most desired diving camps in the US. Mark is married to Nicole Bolt, former Team Orlando diver, Dr. Phillips HS State Champion, and NCAA Diving All American of the University of Florida.
Joe Dowd, Assistant Coach
Joe Dowd is an assistant coach for YCF Diving. Joe started diving at the age of 4 with Team Orlando Diving under Jay Lerew, and made his first national team at 8 years old. Joe was a Pan-American Team Member in 2007 and represented the United States in 2008 when he traveled to Sheffield to compete again the British National Team. Joe is a multiple USA junior national champion and YMCA national champion. Joe attended attended Olympia High School and graduated in 2014. He was a 3-time state champion and was the state runner up in 2014. Joe holds the 6-dive and 11-dive point records for Olympia. Joe is ecstatic to start with YCF and coach, he brings a great attitude to the pool and can’t wait to get divers to the next step in their diving career.
Juliana Veloso, Assistant Coach
Juliana Veloso is an assistant coach for YCF Diving. Juliana is the daughter of diving parents but chose gymnastics as her first sport. At the age of 8, she dove in an event with her older brother with no training, won, and realized then that there was no turning back. Diving was in her DNA . Juliana moved to the US from her home country, Brazil, in March of 2017. Her diving record speaks for itself. She has been a national champion in Brazil 22 years in a row from 1994 through 2016. She has 32 gold medals under her belt competing in various South American championships. She obtained 1 silver and 2 bronze medals during the Pan American Games in 2003 and 2007. Juliana is a five time olympian competing in Sydney in 2000, Athens in 2004, Beijing in 2008, London in 2012, and Rio in 2016. Her best scores placed her in 8th place in Rio (2016) on 3M Synchro with her partner Tammy Galera. Individually, she placed 13th in Sydney (2000) on the 10M platform. Juliana’s other interests led to become a Sergeant in the Brazilian Navy. She is also the proud mom of 2 boys! Juliana has been coaching diving in Brazil since 1998 and will initially be coaching Lessons, Pre-Team and JO1 students at YCF. Here’s what Juliana has to say about her past and future expectations: “ My goal with diving never was about being a champ. It was always about being the best that I could be, beat my fears, get over the barrier that came ahead, being a better person and Having FUN ! That's what I think it is all about improve ourselves as persons and giving the kids the tools so they can be the best that they can be.”