Meet the Team
DOUG TUTTLE // USAT CERTIFIED RACE DIRECTOR
Doug oversees the Staff and Champions for the race. He is also responsible for the race day operations.
Doug completed his first triathlon in 2008, and like so many others he was hooked. Five years later, he has competed in several road races and triathlons including Sprint, Olympic and Half Ironman. In September 2010 Doug accomplished a major goal when he finished the Wisconsin Ironman. He is involved in the Grand Rapids Triathlon, since its inception, overseeing the course Aid Stations. Susan is his wife and lifelong best friend. Together they have 3 children (Corydon, Ella & Raleigh) who are up and coming triathletes. Doug and his family are very involved in their local church, Grand Rapids First. Doug is also the third generation co-owner of Johnson Carpet One in Grandville.
ANDY VIDRO // USAT CERTIFIED RACE DIRECTOR
Andy is responsible for handling the technical side of the race ensuring all course details are followed and sanctioning rules are adhered to. He also works closely with the different communities, organizations and Police departments for race day.
Andy represents Cranson Insurance as an insurance executive. He has also been involved with several businesses on the East side of the state and locally, successfully promoting and improving their market share. Andy has always enjoyed organized sports, 5k’s, 10k’s and half-marathons. Since entering the triathlon world, he has taken home several first place wins from MI to Las Vegas.
Andy is also the president of the O’Hara Foundation – a group that raises funds and awards scholarships for athletes.
ANN VIDRO // CPA & LEVEL II USAT CERTIFIED RACE DIRECTOR
Ann is uniquely qualified to handle both the financial and marketing operations of the race. She also uses her incredible project management skills to keep everyone on task.
Enthusiastic and focused, Ann has a passion for the details and the drive to ensure each athlete has a positive experience during their race. This is evident in the fact that Ann recently passed her USA Triathlon Level 2 Race Director certification. She has participated in organized races since 1996, and joined the triathlon world fives years ago. She also recently completed her first half Marathon. A small business owner and resident in the Grand Rapids area for several years, Ann enjoys giving back to the local community in many ways. She actively leads a weekly bible study group for women, holds a position of Treasurer for Grand Rapids Initiative for Leaders and sits on the Alumni Board for Davenport University.
ADMINISTRATIVE // LORI OTT
Three years ago I began as a volunteer for the GR Tri & MiTi. The following year I became a triathlete myself, I have competed in few Sprint distance triathlons as a solo athlete along with a handful of Olympic & Half distance tris as the swimmer for relay teams. I really love the swim! In 2014 I joined the staff for both of those events. What I enjoy most about being on staff is trying to assure that all the athletes I come in contact with have a smooth stress-free race. My proudest moment came this year when I saw my husband go from being the man who after his first triathlon said, “I will never do that again! I’ll stick to running, I’m good at running!” to being the man who crossed the finish line with a smile on his face after completing his first Half Distance tri at the 2015 Grand Rapids Triathlon. Some day that will be me, but for now I’ll put my triathlon talents into helping plan them.
AID STATIONS/BIKE //
AID STATIONS/RUN – CLINICS & TRAINING LOGISTICS // CHUCK HURST //
After moving to Michigan in the fall of 2010 I couldn’t help but notice the strong cycling and triathlon culture in the community which I was instantly drawn to. Michigan has a great mix of urban area, green space and access to the remote wilderness which makes getting outdoors and running/ cycling/ swimming easy and enjoyable. For me, triathlon began as a personal challenge and the result has exceeded my expectations. It’s funny how something as challenging as a triathlon can be reduced to doing the things we enjoyed as kids…. but just a little further and faster! This area has a tremendous community that is very supportive of the sport and I’m grateful for the opportunity to connect with this movement by volunteering for the 2nd annual MI Titanium!! With a little luck we will all inspire the forever curious to get out there and someday compete in this event!!
AID STATIONS/SUPPLY // DIANE & TONY PAYNE
A few years ago I remember someone explaining to me what a triathlon was. My first thought; why would anyone do that to themselves? Then in 2009 my husband told me they were holding the first annual GR Tri right in our backyard of Ada, Mi. He thought we should give it a shot since it was so close to home. I have to admit i think I had a glass of wine or two when i actually agreed to do it. We set out for some training with a few neighbors and competed in the race. It was tough, but more fun than anything I had ever done. Having a swimming background it wasn’t as “crazy” as I thought it would be. I took second in my age group, had a blast and was instantly hooked. Since then I have competed in 7 triathlons and 4 relays. I hope it is a positive influence on my daughters who I love with all my heart. I mostly race for them, and a little bit for me. I encourage anyone I meet to at least give it a “tri”. It is an incredibly rewarding experience.
AWARDS // JIM VIDRO
My involvement with triathlons began with the participation of my sons and their wives. I found the people involved in and around the events to be so enthusiastic and friendly. When my son and his wife offered me the opportunity to become involved in planning triathlons, I jumped at the opportunity! I am able to offer my experiences as retired educator, adminstrator, and coach. It has been, and continues to be, great fun assisting in the organization of these events.
BIKE COURSE // FRANK MALOTT
Why do I race triathlon? I love the competition. I have always competed in sports from high school to local golf tournaments. After I finished my first tri, I was only partly satisfied. I knew I had more in me, each race I enter; I aim to beat my time from the previous year or race.Training has also become routine that is very enjoyable as well. I like to push during workouts and do each workout with a purpose. I am getting my family into fitness as well and they enjoy trying new exercises I come up for them.
ENVIRONMENTAL RESTORATION // TIM GUIKEMA
I have been involved in Triathlons since 2010. Starting off with a neighborhood Tri, Lech Lecha, cross the finish line and fell in love with this type of racing. I been with the MiTi for 4years and would not miss the opportunity to race/help out and be involved in this race. I have missed a few races due to injuries and an adoption, but now I am ready to race. I will be out on the race coarse competing in the Full Aqua-Bike, when I get done I will be back helping anywhere possible.
I have a wife of 15 years, a 9 and 6 year old daughters and a 3 year son from Ethiopia. I do sales and production management for Summit Tree Service, a local tree company. I hope to someday finish a Full Ironman distance.
ENVIRONMENTAL RESTORATION – PARKING//BILL OTT
I started running in my mid 30’s, after my wife, Lori, and her friends decided to take up running and do a 5k. I was hooked and like Forest Gump, just kept running. I participated in one triathlon and vowed, never again, instead turning my attention to endurance running, where I completed 3 marathons and 2 ultra-marathons between 2013 and 2014. In 2014, I returned to triathlons, learning to relax on the swim and tolerate the bike. The 2015 GR Tri marked my first half distance, and I’m sure some day I’ll get around to a full. Having volunteered at or participated in events all over West Michigan, I have a much better appreciation for all the work that goes on behind the scenes to make these events happen. (Did I mention how awesome my wife Lori is?)
EQUIPMENT SET-UP & TEAR DOWN // MIKE KOETSIER
While having a few beers with a buddy, he asked me to join him at one of his “triathlons”. I said “Well, I’ve raced bicycles for years and I’m a pretty good runner but I’m not really a swimmer”. “Oh, don’t worry. That’s the shortest part”. After nearly drowning in the Thornapple river, I had crossed the finish line and I was instantly hooked! Twelve months later I had entered over 15 triathlons, completed my first Half Ironman and earned age group wins in the Sprint and Olympic categories. I believe MiTitanium is Michigan’s “premier” event. After participating the previous 2 years I jumped at the opportunity to help out.
EXPO // RICH BOMAN
I have been competing in triathlons since 1987 as a middle-of-the-pack age grouper and loving it. It is addictive and has become a lifestyle. Fortunately I am married to a wonderful woman who may not always understand, but does accept my addiction. Over the years I have managed to improve within my age group and now find myself finishing higher than middle of the pack, which just motivates me to train more. I have competed in virtually every distance from Indoor to Ironman including Sprint, Olympic, Half Ironman, Ironman and even the Long Course World Championship. I am excited to be a part of organizing the only full distance to be held in Michigan.
FINISH LINE // CHAD TUTTLE
I completed my first triathlon (Johan’s) in 2007 and think it forever changed my DNA. Since then, I’ve competed at every distance and, although I’m not fast and will never win my age group, I LOVE every second of it. I became an Ironman in 2010 and am looking to repeat in 2013. Being a not-for-profit CEO by day though, I appreciate the amount of work and volunteers it takes to make an event successful. With that in mind, I began giving back to the sport and volunteering in 2009. I’ve enjoyed working finish lines at various distances, including Ironman, and am really looking forward to seeing the faces of the finishers at the MiTi! It’s an amazing accomplishment and I hope that our Finish Line team at the MiTi leaves a lasting impression on the participants, family members, and spectators who all come out to enjoy this event. As a reminder, this event is FAMILY FRIENDLY and your special loved ones are welcomed to cross with you if you’d like!
FOOD/FINISH LINE // GAIL VIDRO
I taught in Lowell for 32 years and then at Forest Hills Presbyterian Preschool for 5 more years. I am officially retired now. I have enjoyed watching my family participate in triathlons. The highlights have been watching my son, Andy, finish the Ironman in Panama City and watching my granddaughter, Sofie, participate in the Splash and Dash. By volunteering I am able to become a part of this amazing sport and special event!
FOOD/VOLUNTEERS // LYDIA STUBBS
Biking is my favorite discipline, closely followed by open water swims, and the running part rounds it out for a great tri. I have been hooked on the sport for over eight years and participate in a few Tri’s every year, plus several running races. The wonderful GR triathlon community & watching incredible athletes compete is the highlight of the MiTi. Keeping the spectacular volunteers happy and fed is my goal for this great event.
MOTO-PATROL // TODD BRADFORD
Todd Bradford is an avid cyclist with a passion for all things two wheeled. Between weekend rides and commuting to work on either his bike or his motorcycle, he often forgets what it’s like to drive a car during the summer months. He is a hard working family man, is active in his church and is a lifelong resident of the Grand Rapids area. Todd is a certified Motorcycle Safety Foundation RiderCoach and teaches basic and advanced courses through
PACKET PICKUP // SUSAN TUTTLE
ROAD CLOSURES // ANDY DAUKSTS
I never have actually participated in a TRI, but I love to help out and volunteer when I can. I have two children, Logan and Brinley. I am a manager at a traffic control company. My sister Katie Belland and my mom Barb Dauksts have always asked me to help with races, the first one I helped with was the very first GR TRI.
RUN COURSE // CHRIS GEORGE
This is my third year on the MiTi team. It’s always an inspiration to see all of the athletes giving it their all to achieve something so great. The sport of triathlon has been an extremely positive influence in my life and I feel very fortunate to be able to give back by helping out with the run portion of this fantastic event.
SIGNAGE // JUSTIN STEMPLE
I had talked about triathlon for a number of years until my wife finally told me to quit talking and start training! I did my first sprint tri and loved it. I’ve competed in several sprint and olympic tris and have thrown in a few 25ks and half-marathons for good measure. Participating in triathlon and endurance sports has been a great experience and I’ve enjoyed meeting the many wonderful people who participate in and put on these events. The opportunity to volunteer with a full distance triathlon and see the joy/pain/excitement up close and personal was too much to pass up, so here I am!
SPLASH & DASH // DON GOETCHEUS
In 2007 I was minding my own business swimming laps a couple days a week and mountain biking to stay in shape. Along came a girl I wanted to impress so I started running for the first time in my life. Within a year I had finished my first full marathon. In 2008 a friend, I swam with on the high school swim team, asked me to join him at a Master swim practice. While at practice, he mentioned a group that was getting together to transport handicapped individuals around at triathlons and he wanted me to be a part of the running leg. That was the beginning of My Team Triumph. My experience with My Team Triumph proved life changing, as I had been bitten by the triathlon bug. As a result, I have worked my way up to multiple Half-Ironman distance tris, multiple marathons, and a few bike races each year. My down time is spent with my two teenage boys, still trying to impress that girl, and as a financial advisor with Amerprise Financial Services. In the future, I plan to tackle the full Ironman distance triathlon after my boys are off to college.
SPECTATOR EXPERIENCE // EMMA BARANOWSKI
Compared to other Champions on the team, my racing journey is still in the baby stages. I have just started running and have only run a handful of races. People often ask me what inspires me and the answer is simple: watching others follows their dreams. Nothing gets me more excited than seeing others achieve things they never thought possible. For some, it is lowering their time at a race while others it is simply finishing. No matter what the reasons for competing are I enjoy encouraging others on their journey. It gives me the inspiration to follow my dreams and goals. Last summer I volunteered for a few races on the “cheering” squad and loved every minute of it. This year I am excited to be the Spectator Experience Champion and cheer, encourage, and watching others follow their dreams.
SPONSORSHIP // KARI STUART
The sport of triathlon found me in 2010. The training and preparation, excitement of race day, cheering of the crowd and the triumph of reaching a goal had me hooked. I now regularly compete in triathlon and the 70.3 distance has somehow become my favorite! My husband and I participate in many races throughout the state, and I have found that the endurance community we have here in Grand Rapids is unmatched. There’s a reason why GR was named the best city for triathlon, and it’s the amazing crowd support, enthusiastic athletes and awesome events like MiTitanium and GR Triathlon.Health and community is a integral part of my life, and working for the Mi Titanium and GR Triathlon is a very natural fit! So, I am thrilled to be a part of the team. As both an athlete and a business owner, I see both sides of the sponsorship coin. I enjoy working with other businesses to creatively maximize their exposure while also improving the athlete race experience.
SWIM COURSE //MARIANNE MAXIUM
After my children graduated high school I went been back to swimming and cycling in 2009. In 2010, I decided to try a sprint triathlon and was immediately addicted. Fall of 2011 a friend approach me and suggested I run a marathon. I have to admit my first reaction was to laugh at her. In 2012 I competed in many halves and a marathon. It shows what you put your mind to you can do. I got the idea I should compete in my first half iron man at Grand Rapids Tri. I was so impressed by the organization and friendliness of the volunteers. I knew I wanted to be part of something so awesome.
TRANSITION // DAVID BRADY
Since the inception of the Michigan Titanium in 2012 I have been a Champion for Transition. Each year a few tweaks have been made to improve the experience for all athletes participating in the race – and this year will be no different. I am a lifetime fitness believer and recently became hooked on triathlon. My experience in participating in Sprint through Half-Iron distance races gives me an understanding of what it takes to provide the necessary assistance athletes want to help them throughout their race day. I enjoy spending time with his wife Michelle and their 4 college and high school age kids.
TRANSITION // BRIAN JIROUS
This is my 3rd year being on staff for this race as well as being on staff for Grand Rapids Triathlon last year. I love being part of these events and being in the “eye of the storm” doing transition area and seeing the athletes at all stages of the race. I have done several 1/2 Ironman distance races and am currently training for Ironman Chattanooga in September. When not training or competing I run a youth basketball program for 3rd thru 8th grade girls and coach a school team and an AAU team. I am supported by my wife and best friend Liz and have 3 daughters that are very active as well.
VIP // MATT SCHMUKER
Matt is the owner of Apex Landscape based in Grand Rapids. He is married with two amazing sons. Matt has been been cycling for four years and has competed in road, gravel, cyclocross and mountain bike races. In 2013 he completed his first triathlon. Matt is also the creator and director of the Battle at the Burg mountain bike race and outdoor expo held annually at Cannonsburg Ski Area as well as Team Apex Multisport. A 55 person Multisport team based in Grand Rapids.
VOLUNTEER RECRUITMENT //