Coaching Staff

We're fortunate to have the most dedicated and experienced coaching staff in Northern Virginia. Learn more about each of our coaches below.

Matt Shoop, Varsity Girls Coach

Matt Shoop has been coaching at TJ since 1997 and has been the Varsity Girls’ coach since 2000. He is a former Washington Post All-Met Coach of the Year. Shoop has sent dozens of athletes on to row at the collegiate level at more than 25 different schools at the Division I, II, and III levels. His boats have won multiple championships at the local, regional, and national levels. His coaching philosophy is to maximize each athlete’s potential, to honor the sport, and represent Jefferson with dignity and class.

Ronald Lim, Assistant Varsity Girls Coach

Ron Lim has been coaching for TJ Crew since our very first season in the spring of 1990. He has coached both men and women in freshman, lightweight and novice boats. He has had many successful crews, coaching boats to various medals at state-level competition; 1 silver medal, 3 bronze medals, and 7 finals at Stotesbury; and 1 silver medal, 3 bronze medals and 5 finals at SRAAs. In the off season, Ron has also coached masters club boats for PWRC and NVRC and junior club boats for Resilient Rowing. Ron began rowing at T.C. Williams High School, where he rowed for 3 years. As a senior, he won a bronze medal at Stotesbury and placed 5th at SRAAs in the Senior 4+. Since Ron can't seem to get enough of the boathouse, he also spends time there repairing shells for TJ and other teams. Ron retired in 2015 with 30 years of Virginia state service.

Dennis Becker - Freshman Boys Coach

Dennis Becker began coaching at TJ under the mentorship of several former and some current TJ coaches from 2005-2007 while his oldest son Matthew rowed there. He also coached at Oakton from 2009-2013 while his second son Michael rowed there and helped their novice and JV boys win silver and bronze medals at States. He has also coached at many summer and fall off-season rowing camps. Dennis rowed for the Coast Guard Academy from 1980-1984, winning a gold medal at the Dad Vails in 1981. He credits many coaching lessons and knowledge of the sport to his main mentor and coach at the academy, Bill Stowe (stroke of the gold medal-winning men’s eight in the 1964 Olympics in Tokyo), and to many coaches he’s shadowed over the years from the UVA men’s rowing program, where his son Michael rowed. Before coaching crew, Dennis coached youth football and basketball in the NOVA region for 15 years, where he learned the value of teaching fundamentals and how to motivate young adults. He has rowed with several masters clubs in San Diego and Virginia over the years and still rows competitively in regional regattas. Dennis loves rowing on the erg and is approaching the 25 million meter milestone. When not rowing or coaching, Dennis works as a contractor for the Coast Guard minimizing terrorism risk in the maritime community. He lives with his wife Karen, and has three children, Matt, Michael and Caitlin.

Leah Gillespie, Novice Boys Coach

Emma Puckett, Novice Boys Coach