We take pride in our program and the fantastic team that help us put the whole thing together. Without the help of our coaches, we simply would not be able to provide fun and safe adventures for our SOGO Adventure Running kids. Thank you coaches!
SOGO Squirts Head Coach and SOGO Access Head Coach
Bridie has grown up with our Orienteering Calgary Junior program and has now taken on the role of coaching and teaching youth. She started as one of our SOGO Youth Volunteer Coaches, before taking on the role of our Level 1 and Level 2 Head Coach in 2017 and Squirts Head Coach in 2018. As a personal passion and project, Bridie has partnered with Between Friends to create our SOGO Access program, which began in 2016. She has since touched the lives of many kids and families that struggle to access physical literacy programs in Calgary and the surrounding area. Bridie led our SOGO Access program to win a "Most Inclusive Organization" award in 2018, with Between Friends. Bridie is currently studying Education at the University of Calgary in amongst her SOGO coaching roles. Bridie is also an avid skier, climber, runner and when she gets to the coast, surfer!
SOGO Squirts Program Manager
Chandra started orienteering when she was just 3 years old, following in the footsteps of her Dad, creating wonderful memories of running through forests, fields and even a swamp looking for those iconic orange and white flags. These days, Chandra can still be found exploring the wilder areas of Kananaskis Country, the Bow Valley and Calgary areas with her own two young children, husband and beagle. Chandra is also a local teacher with degrees in both History and Education, as well as a certified yoga teacher with 200 hours and certificates for YogaKids. Chandra has been guiding kids in their exploration of nature and self for the better part of the past two decades, while also teaching horseback riding, canoeing, backcountry hiking, physical education, art and drama.
For Chandra, the best part of SOGO Adventure Running is the awesome community of coaches and families who love being outdoors! As our Squirts founder and Program Manager, the best part will always be "seeing the excitement of our youngest runners when they start to recognize landmarks and find orienteering flags by using their own observations".
Level 1 and Level 2
SOGO Level 1 and Level 2 Head Coach
The Sepandj/Robert family has deep roots with the Calgary Orienteering community and we are fortunate to have Jasmine as part of our SOGO team. Her younger years were spent pursuing Olympic goals in the sport of Ski Jumping, before retiring and devoting her efforts towards coaching. Jasmine found a passion in this area of athletics, watching youth grow as both athletes and eventually into young adults themselves. To help her in her coaching, Jasmine has utilized her undergraduate degree in Science in Kinesiology, which she is currently working on. Jasmine finds joy in her coaching role with SOGO as she combines her experiences in coaching, knowledge acquired from her university courses and her passion for watching and helping kids learn and develop more active lifestyles.
SOGO Squirts, Level 1 Cochrane Head Coach
This will be Shelley's fourth season with SOGO and we are happy to have her on our team! Shelley has been in the fitness industry as a coach and personal trainer for 30 years. She also has a background as a group fitness instructor, water safety instructor and as a youth coach. Shelley comes to SOGO with a background in team-based youth training and coaching dry-land training. Beyond her time spent coaching, Shelley's passion is for the outdoors and living through nature, which she embodies through her hobbies of cycle touring, painting, climbing, hiking, swimming, event planing, singing and, of course, adventure running!
SOGO Level 3 Head Coach and Program Manager
Damian has been coaching with SOGO Level 3 since 2017 and most recently has started coaching Level 2 as well. He enjoys sharing his passion for orienteering and running with the younger generation. Originally from Winnipeg, he came to Calgary to short track speed skate, eventually focussing on orienteering full time. Damian is a member of Orienteering Canada’s National Team and has competed internationally since 2008. Aside from orienteering he enjoys hiking, fishing, cycling and cross country skiing. Damian graduated in 2016 with a Bachelor of Arts in Geography from the University of Calgary.
Jan Erik Naess,
SOGO Bridge Program Head Coach and Program Manager
Jan Erik joined our SOGO team in Fall 2019, spearheading our Bridge program for our high performance athletes. Jan Erik has developed this program to provide our SOGO athletes a new opportunity to bridge from our recreation outdoor programs, into competitive and elite orienteering competitions. Jan's favourite aspect of SOGO is the opportunity to work with enthusiastic Junior-level orienteers, while being part of their growth as aspiring athletes. Our local Calgary Orienteering Club has been essential in supporting this new and exciting program.
Outside of being a coach and national team member, Jan Erik is also a student-athlete and entrepreneur, studying Geomatics Engineering at the University of Calgary. Amid his studies, Jan is a team member of the Varsity Cross Country team, competing at Western Canadians competing in national competitions. Jan Erik is also avidly involved with the Haskayne Consulting Club where he is Director of Talent and a Project Manager for a team developing Artificial Intelligence for Financial Behavior Analytics.
Jan Eric's favourite park to run is Nose Hill, where the majority of SOGO Bridge trainings are hosted. Orienteering aside, Jan Erik enjoys cross country skiing, with the goal of competing in his first Olympic Distance triathlon this coming summer.
SOGO and [email protected]/Groups Program Coordinator
Lenora has been working with SOGO since 2017, where she began as the Level 1 and Level 2 Head Coach and later developed into her current role. In the warmer months, Lenora shares her time with SOGO as an ACMG Hiking Guide leading groups in the nearby Mountain Parks, and later in the season when the snow flies, she can be found backcountry skiing in various parts of Alberta and BC. Originating from the eastern part of Canada, Lenora has an undergraduate degree in International Development from the University of Ottawa and moved to Calgary after graduation in 2009.