Coaches

janusz-smolenski1Janusz Smolenski, Head Coach - Janusz holds an M.S. in Sports and Physical Education from the Polish Academy of Physical Education in Katowice, Poland, and is a certified Fencing Master with the USFCA. Before coming to US, he worked at the ASZ AWF Katowice, one of the top Olympic Sport clubs in Poland. Since his arrival in 1990, his club has grown from a small recreational club to one of the best in the nation. His DCFC students have won many medals at the National Championships, the Junior Olympics, Sectional and North American Cup competitions. Email Janusz Smolenski, Head Coach

 

Robert Suchorski, Coach – Robert has extensive national and international competitive experience. While a student of the Polish Academy of Physical Education in Katowice, he was a Polish National Junior Champion. He competed at the World Championships, Military World Championships and multiple World Cup competitions as a member of the Polish National Team. He has trained with Zbigniew Czajkowski and the best Polish and Russian fencing masters. Email Robert Suchorski

 

 

Ilya Lobanenkov, Coach – Ilya has trained for over 20 years with world class masters of the Russian, Hungarian and Polish schools. Some notable results from his students include two silver medalists in US Open Women’s epee team event, multiple top 8 finishes in Veteran Women’s US Nationals, multiple “A” ratings and a top 16 finish in a US Junior Men’s epee circuit event. He is also the webmaster for DCFC. Email Ilya Lobanenkov

 

 

Peter Souders is a Junior Olympic and Division One finalist in Men’s Sabre, and was a member of the 2013 US Senior World Cup Travel Squad. During his NCAA career at Boston College, he was a four-time MVP and NCAA National Championship qualifier. He finished his collegiate career by being named Boston College’s 2012 Outstanding Scholar-Athlete for the senior class; an honor that he received ahead of athletes from the much larger sports of football and basketball.  Email Peter Souders

 

IMG_7538 copy_edited-1Byron Neslund, Coach – Byron has been at DC Fencers Club since 2005, when he moved here from Alaska. He is a nationally ranked epee fencer, a world cup competitor, and also competed at the NCAA championships when he was a student at NYU. He has taught at DCFC since 2006, and is primarily focused on youth development. Email Byron Neslund.

 

 

 

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David Ruskin, Coach –  David has been involved with fencing for nearly 20 years.  Over that time, he has trained in foil and epee in New York City, Rochester, NY and Washington, DC.  He has prior experience coaching for the University of Rochester Fencing Club, and is a certified referee in all three weapons.

 

 

1047863_10152977456975223_2124273815_oSally Gifford walked into DC Fencers Club in 2009 for a one-day introduction to fencing class and was immediately hooked. Now she gets to suit up reporters for bouts with DCFC fencers, and share DCFC news through a series of tubes otherwise known as the Internet.