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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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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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Kalani Taylor

Cheer Team Coach, Class Instructor

Kalani Taylor

Kalani Taylor's passion of cheerleading has landed her at Thunder Elite.  With 15 years of cheerleading experience we are excited to have Kalani as part of the Thunder Elite family.  Kalani enjoys coaching and teaching her athletes how to be a better version of themselves.  Her kind and humble demeanor assists her in her one on one relationships with her students, but at the same time her experience of coaching also gives her the will to be direct in her teachings and making her students want to work hard in order to attain their goals.

Kalani's favorite quote,“Anything is possible as long as your mindset is there.”

 

 

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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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Annaliese Lopez

Assistant Team Coach, Class Instructor

Annaliese Lopez

Annaliese Lopez has spent most of her life at Thunder Elite participating in gymnastics.  The love of the sport and her time at Thunder Elite made her realize that she wanted to coach others what she has learned over the years.  A big part of wanting to coach is the kids.  The kids at Thunder Elite are eager to learn, fun, have great sense of humor, and love their coaches.  It is a WIN WIN for everyone.  One thing is for sure, Annaliese's fun and friendly attitude brightens up the room and it makes everyone feel welcomed.  Customer service is a must and Annaliese believes that excellent service brings trust and you want to trust the people coaching your children.

Annaliese's favorite quote,”Not everyday is a good day, but there is good in everyday.”

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Leah Prillaman

Class Instructor

Leah Prillaman

Leah Prillaman had always heard wonderful things about Thunder Elite.  But what really stood out was how everyone associated Thunder Elite with the word FAMILY, a word that resonated with Leah and it was something she wanted to be a part of.  Leah brings 13 years of competitive gymnastics to Thunder Elite.  She coached rec and preschool and LOVED it because she embraces the lessons she learned from her coaches and remembers how they positively impacted her life and wants to do that for others.  Leah prides herself in being an Aggie and wraps her life around being a good christian.  Her outgoing personality encourages and motivates her students and when they are motivated that motivation turns into confidence.   You know Leah is in the gym when you hear her laugh, something that we find her doing often.  Customer Service is a must and Leah wants every customer to feel important and that they each have a voice.  Leah's exact words,”I want these kids to feel like ROCK STARS!” She wants these kids to drean big and then put in the necessary hard work to achieve their goals.  And they will becaise SHE BELIEVES IN THEM!

Leah's favorite quotes:

“Whatever you do, do it well.” Walt Disney

“If everything was perfect, you would never learn and you would never grow.” Beyonce Knowles

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Riley Winslow

Class Instructor

Riley Winslow

Riley Winslow LOVES Thunder Elite and the values that the business stands for.  Her love of cheerleading and dance along with her love of children makes her a perfect fit at Thunder Elite.  Riley stays extremely active making she she is always putting her best foot forward with a positive attitude and a great work ethic. 

Riley's favorite quote, “Hard work pays off.”

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Aly Baker

Class Instructor

Aly Baker

Aly Baker loves teaching gymnastics due to it being her passion since she was a young child.  She surrounds herself around individuals who have the same passion and that combination turns into a WIN WIN for Thunder Elite.  Aly brings a great deal of experience to our staff with five years of dance, ten years of gymnastics, and four years of cheerleading, along with coaching at carious levels, her presence makes people want to be better! Aly is passionate ad hardworking and that reflects in everything she does at the gym.  Customer servive is a must and she aims to please by providing open communication, a great work ethic, and a desire to teach others to be their best.

Aly's favorite quote,”Where there is no struggle, there is no strength.”

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Ally Hudzinski

Class Instructor

Ally Hudzinski

Ally Hudzinski is EXCITED about being a part of the Thunder Elite family because of her passion and love for cheerleading and tumbling.  Her experience from cheering in high school to being in competitive cheer since grade school assist her efforts in coaching at a high level.  Her goal is making everyone better each day as she puts her energy in coaching in an environment that is not only structured, but FUN too!  Ally is driven to make her students feel confident, comfortable in learning and making them believe that anything is possible with hard work, dedication, and consistency.

Ally's favorite quote,”If you want to success as much as you want to breathe, then you'll be successful.”

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Hilary Saha

Class Instructor

Hilary Saha

Hilary Saha has always been involved in cheerleading and gymnastics since she can remember.  Watching athletes learn, grow, and improve their skills is one of the things she enjoys most.    With 12 years experience in competitive cheer and 5 years of gymnastics has placed her in a situation that she loves … COACHING!  With her outgoing personality, her cheerful disposition, and loud presence make her kids smile and in return makes her a better coach.  Hilary wants her students to be motivated and inspired to be the best they can be and encouraging parents to be the bust support system.

Hilary's favorite quote,”It never gets easier, you just get better.”

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Emily Thurman

Class Instructor

Emily Thurman

From student to instructor, Emily has proven she wants to do what she loves to do and that is being in the gym coaching cheerleading and gymnastics.  Emily has past experience in both sports and with her energetic personality and compassionate heart, she is a perfect fit for Thunder Elite.  She gets her greatest joy by watching the kids enjoy learning.  Emily knows that building relationships with her clients is what keeps clients coming back and she prides herself in providing excellent customer service.

Emily's favorite quote,“Be a fountain, not a drain.”

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Jordan Charles

Class Instructor

Jordan Charles

Jordan Charles loves working with children and keeping them motivated at the beginning, the middle and when they succeed on gaining a new skill.  Jordan brings over 10 years in competitive cheerleading and several years in gymnastics.  With her fun spirit, energetic personality, she brings a smile to all those she encounters.  She strongly believes that CUSTOMER SERVICE is the backbone of every business and SHE IS RIGHT!  

Jordan's favorite quote,“Don't be worry be happy.”  Bobby McFerrin

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Kyle Stanley

Class Instructor

Kyle Stanley

Kyle Stanley comes to the Thunder Elite family with a passion for teaching as a PROUD alumni from Louisiana State University!  He loves teaching people something new.  He challenges them to learn something that sometimes they think they cannot achieve, but with this proactive and positive coach, the end result … SUCCESS!  With coaching experience in cheerleading and gymnastics on a recreational and competitive level, Kyle is a perfect fit.  Kyle focuses on clients and wants them to feel loved, cared for, and understood. But most importantly, he wants them to always walk away learning something and experiencing growth. 

Kyle's favorite quote,“No matter how far you go, don't forget to turn around and take some time to enjoy the view.”

 

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