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Our Staff

Nicole Podraza

Owner, Cheerleading Director, Hip Hop Dancer, Gymnastics Team Coach

Nicole Podraza

Nicole Podraza, an individual who believes in leadership, mentorship and guidance, owns Thunder Elite.  This role model to children and young adults has been coaching in the Bryan/College Station area since 1999, but has coached since 1995. As a gymnast, she competed for Bela Karolyi through level 9. Upon leaving gymnastics, she was a cheerleader for 7 years including being a member of the national championship team from Sam Houston State University in 1997. She has coached competitive cheerleading, competitive gymnastics, and competitive hip-hop. Her gymnasts and her cheer and hip-hop teams have achieved many awards, including national titles.  Along with her students, she and her staff have been awarded Coaching Staff of the Year by American CheerPower both in 2006,2007, and 2014!  These accolades hang from the walls of Thunder Elite not only for recognition, but also as a constant reminder that hard work, a CAN DO attitude, and the will to never give up does pay off.

Nicole LOVES kids and it reflects in everything she does for Thunder Elite.  The ultimate goal is to teach the day-to-day business to everyone in order to pay it forward and gain confidence in knowing that you can achieve your dream by fighting for what you believe in.

One of Nicole’s favorite quotes, “If you never have a bad day, how would you know when you had a good one?”

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Frankie Harris

Manager, Summer Camp Director

Frankie Harris

Frankie Harris has had gymnastics as a part of her life since she was a child.  Ultimately coaching would be her goal in this sport as she developed as a gymnast.  She enjoys teaching gymnastics because if the LOVE of the sport and wants her students to enjoy it s much as she did growing up.  Her outgoing spirit and friendly personality makes the class environment FUN.  Frankie enjoys building relationship with the students and their families.  It is important to keep everyone in the know in order to develop skills and gain confidence.  It is a TEAM effort and that is why Frankie’s favorite quote is,” There is no "I" in "TEAM!”

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Morgan Mahle

Cheer and Hip Hop Team Coach, Class Instructor

Morgan Mahle

Morgan Mahle is a cheerleader at heart and utilizes the skills from cheerleading to teach teamwork.  She enjoys coaching kids and with her experience in cheerleading and dance combined with her fun and cheerful attitude, her positive energy exudes in the youth she teaches.  She was on the first Thunder Elite Cheerleading Team in 2000, which makes her a Thunder Elite Alumni.  Thunder Elite is HOME for Morgan and considers those who are a part of Thunder Elite as family.

Morgan’s favorite quote comes from Philippians 4:13,” I can do all things through Christ which strengthens me.”

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Jada Punch

Cheer Team Coach, Class Instructor

Jada Punch

Jada Punch is a HUGE fan of the Cheer Program at Thunder Elite and enjoys interacting with her students daily in order to assist them in achieving their goals.  From student to coach, Jada looks forward in developing her skill set as a coach and a mentor to her students.  She is passionate about cheerleading and dance and the love for both sports shines through in her actions.  With her amusing and entertaining personality, you will find Jada not only funny, but extremely respectful to others and always lending a helping hand.  Her number one priority is to assist her customers and be sure she is delivering 110% on her responsibility to her them and to Thunder Elite.  Her positive attitude is contagious and she wants to be sure everyone is having FUN while working hard. 

Jada's favorite quote, “Without struggle there is no progress.”

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Kayla Townsend

Cheer Team Coach, Class Instructor

Kayla Townsend

Kayla Townsend loves teaching and coaching because cheerleading and gymnastics have inspired her so much from the time she was young. Kayla’s loveable, huggable and passionate attitude makes for a fun and positive learning environment for everyone involved. She strives for improvement in routines and bright smiles from her students all while having FUN. Kayla wants her students and their parents to feel comfortable and confident that she is coaching their child well and setting them up for EXCELLENCE!

Kayla’s favorite quote, “The future belongs to those who believe in the beauty of their dreams.”

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Ashley Toups

Cheer Team Coach, Class instructor

Ashley Toups

Ashley Toups started at Thunder Elite when she was 2 years old.  During her stay, she grew to love cheerleading and observing the coaches at their best.  The coaching aspect of her time at the gym made her want to be a coach, something she is extremely passionate about.    Ashley has 15 years of experience in competitive cheerleading, 6 years in dance, and a few years in gymnastics.  She is obviously a well rounded individual full of talent.  With her hardworking attitude, she wants her students and their parents to feel like they are getting the best customer service experience.  Every opportunity that Ashley has, she wants to ensure that everyone is having a GREAT time.  FUN and POSITIVE atmosphere is what she promotes and she wants everyone to leave knowing they have learned something or improved a skill set.

Ashley's favorite quote, “For with God nothing shall be impossible.” Luke 1:37

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Shania Newton

Assistant Cheer Team Coach

Shania Newton

Shania Newton is in her HAPPY PLACE and that happy place is Thunder Elite!  Her love of Thunder Elite and for coaching makes Shania a positive force to be around.  Her sense of being positive and proactive assist in the success of her students as well as herself.  She is most happy when she has a student achieve a goal that they have been working towards.  She respects her students and in return expects the same.  By being helpful and respectful, students accomplish more.  She wants to always be able to assist the student with any concerns as well as provide accurate information to parents in regards to their child.  Shania builds trust within her students as well as their parents so the parents always know their children are in good hands.

Shania's favorite quote, “Don’t cry because it is over, cry because it happened.”

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Courtney Maynard

Gymnastics Team Director, Class Instructor

Courtney Maynard

Courtney Maynard LOVES working with children. Her determined, caring and hardworking attitude are visible through everything she does and she believes hard work can really pay off. Courtney’s favorite part of coaching comes from the excitement she witnesses through her students when they learn something new! She thinks a good, happy environment to learn in is the key to success.

Courtney’s favorite quote, “You can’t cross the sea merely by standing and staring at the water.” Rabindranath Tagore

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Samantha Bell

Gymnastics Team Coach, Class Instructor

Samantha Bell

Samantha Bell loves coaching and seeing kids grow and learn in the sport she loves so much.  Samantha’s energetic, out-going attitude creates the PERFECT learning environment and the care she puts into each student is what makes her a great asset to the coaching staff at Thunder Elite.  She strives to maintain the trust of each client she encounters and believes that great customer service is the key to success.

Samantha’s favorite quote, “I want to inspire people, I want someone to look at me and say because of you I didn’t give up.”

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Alicia Kollmann

Gymnastics Team Coach, Class instructor

Alicia Kollmann

Alicia Kollmann, one of our twin coaches, has a passion for gymnastics, cheerleading and kids!  Alicia was a gymnast for 7 years and carried her skills through high school participating in cheerleading and dance.  She has always enjoyed working with children due to their eagerness to learn, their excitement in learning something new, and watching them grow confident in something they love to do.  Although soft spoken, this kind and patient young lady is uplifting and will use her voice to coach with a loving spirit and push where need be so the kids succeed in their goals.  Alicia feels that customer service is a must and in order to gain new clients, that has to be a priority.  Alicia wants the kids to leave class knowing that they learned something, had fun, and feel confident that their coach is there for them.

Alicia's favorite quote, “She is clothed with strength and dignity and she laughs without fear of the future.” Proverbs 31:25

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Rebecca Wimp

Class Instructor

Rebecca Wimp

Rebecca Wimp wants to teach the sport she loves and that is what has landed her at Thunder Elite.  This 15-year gymnast enjoys coach and teaching her students new skills as well as enjoys the excitement generated from her students when they learn something new.  Rebecca is outgoing, confident and FUN and it shows through her interactions with her students and their parents.  She prides herself in putting her students and their parents’ needs first.  That is what defines customer service for Rebecca.  She always wants to feel approachable so everyone will be comfortable in speaking with her.  Coaching kids and putting smiles on their face makes it worth every minute that Rebecca’s in the gym. 

Rebecca's favorite quote, “She is clothed in strength and dignity and she laughs without fear of the future.” Proverbs 31:25

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Kayla Brock

Class Instructor

Kayla Brock

Kayla Brock LOVES coaching at the Thunder Elite…the gym that taught her so much while she was growing up.  She loves helping kids learn and do things they never thought they were capable of.  Kayla’s passion and determination for coaching is visible in everything she does and she puts 110% into each student she gets to work with.  Kayla thinks customer service and trust between a client and student is the most important thing, especially with gymnastics when you work so closely with each other.

Kayla’s favorite quote, “When I stand before God at the end of my life, I would hope that I would not have a single bit of talent left and could say, I used everything you gave me.” – Erma Bombeck

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Ashley Kollmann

Class Instructor

Ashley Kollmann

Ashley Kollmann, one of our twin coaches, has a passion for gymnastics, cheerleading and kids!  She grew up participating in both sports which allowed her to be around kids at all times.  As she has gotten older, it has not swayed her from wanting to coach kids and be around the two sports she loves the most.  With her sense of humor, her patience, and understanding of day to day interactions, all the kids at Thunder Elite enjoy Ashley and what she provides for Thunder Elite.  Customer service is the most important thing in a business and with this mindset, Ashley strives to provide outstanding service with a positive attitude in hopes every client will walk away knowing they have been treated well.

Ashley's favorite quote, “God is within her, she will not fail.” Psalm 46:5

 

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Tommy Holbert

Class Instructor

Tommy Holbert

Tommy Hobert fits right in with the Thunder Elite team because he feels the staff is AWESOME and so are the kids! Tommy competed on the boy's team for 6 years and  went from student to coach coaching school age gymnastics, pre-team, level 2, level 3, and advanced tumbling.  His true enjoyment comes from watching children learn and enhance their skills through hard work and practice.  Tommy says that working with the kds a Thunder Elite bring him joy because they always make him smile and laugh even on challenging days.  Customer service is a must and Tommy thinks it is extremely important  that parents know the people that are coaching their children and by providing excellent service, you are able to build better relationship with the kids and their families. 

Tommy's favorite quote, “The privilege of a lifetime is being who you are.” Joesph Campbell

 

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Miranda Hutton

Class Instructor

Miranda Hutton

Miranda Hutton joined our team at Thunder Elite because she felt it was a welcoming environment and everyone was like family.  With cheerleading, gymnastics, and dance experience from a child through high school and beyond, Miranda wanted to pursue coaching because she enjoys it as well as interacting with driven children who want to excel.  She finds joy in praising their accomplishments and enjoys watching each student learn and grow from what they are being taught.  Miranda is determined, committed, persistent, and understanding … all the qualities we look for in a coach.  Customer service is extremely important to her because it sets the bar of excellence.  Miranda wants her students to feel secure in knowing that she will bring excitement to the learning process making it fun. 

Miranda's favorite quote, “I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.” Philippians 4:13

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