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
AID STATIONS/BIKE // MARIANNE MAXIUM
AID STATIONS/RUN //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. This year I have cofounded the Triathlon Team “Threshold Multisport” in hopes to continue to spread the love of the sport. The team is involved in community events as well as volunteering and donating to other worthy events. My main goal for this year is to qualify for USAT Age Group Nationals for the second year in a row. I went last year to Burlington, VT and it was a great experience. Smaller goals are to run a sub 45 minute 10k, finish top 3 in the Grand Rapids triathlon and the regional qualifier in Waterloo.
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 // JASON MILLER
Back in 2006 I saw a race where people were swimming, biking and running. I thought those people are nuts, but I always like new adventures and I said to myself, “I can do that.” Since then I have spent a lot of money on special shoes, watches, bikes and tight clothes. I have completed many races from sprint distance to full Ironman. I enjoy seeing people accomplish their goals and finish races that I once thought was nuts. I am thankful to have the support from my wife Sara and our two girls Marysa and Samantha. Without their support I wouldn’t be able to be involved in this great sport.
CLINICS & COACHING // CHERYL OLSON, USAT CERTIFIED COACH, ATHLETIC MENTORS
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!!
ENVIRONMENTAL RESTORATION // COURTNEY JONES
Triathlon has always been in my blood. As both a swimmer and runner, and thought it would be easy to just pick up the Bike part (I was somewhat wrong on that one!). When I was 17 I completed my first Triathlon, and like most other Triathletes, It stuck. Now my life really does revolve around running, biking, and swimming (and eating and sleeping and more eating), and I absolutely LOVE it! I race for Grand Valley State University, where we have a team of not only great athletes, but absolutely amazing people. This is one reason why I wanted to get involved with MI Titanium- The Triathlon community, especially in Grand Rapids, is so motivating and inspiring, and I want to be part of that, in order to motivate myself, as well as inspire others to keep moving!
EQUIPMENT SET-UP & TEAR DOWN // MIKE KOETSIER
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 inaugural 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 elementary children for 32 years in Lowell and then taught preschool at Forest Hills Presbyterian Church for 5 more years. I witnessed my first triathlon watching Andy participate. I was drawn in further to the triathlon world by listening as Andy and Ann began to work on their dream of a triathlon in Grand Rapids. Now, by volunteering, I am able to become a part of this amazing event.
FOOD/VOLUNTEERS // LYDIA STUBBS
In over 20 years of biking I have seen a lot of road. Being outdoors is part of my life, and swimming in open water gives me a special thrill. Adding a run to the mix launched me into the triathlon world six years ago. The first tri hooked me into the sport, and I participate in several triathlons a season plus a few 5k and 10ks. I ran my first half marathon last year in Berlin, which was an incredible experience as many historical sites where part of the course. Organizing events is another passion of mine, and when I heard of MiTi coming to town, I knew I could give back to a wonderful community and watch incredible athletes compete. The athletic events are held up by great volunteers, and I will do my best to feed this amazing crowd.
MARKETING // KAT GILLESPIE
I am in training for my first marathon, and in my free time I love Latin dancing.
MOTO-PATROL // TODD BRADFORD
Todd Bradford is an avid cyclist with a passion for everything on two wheels, both motorized and human powered. He is a hard working family man and life-long resident of Grand Rapids. Todd is active in his church, teaching, leading small groups and participating in leadership. He is also a certified Motorcycle Safety Foundation RiderCoach and teaches basic and advanced motorcycle classes through Grand Rapids Community College. This year Todd will be heading up the Moto-Patrol, pacing the field and providing moto-support for the race officials.
PACKET PICKUP // CHERYL BRITCHER
In January 2009 I became intentional and dead serious about good health, which meant making a sustainable lifestyle change-and it’s been totally transforming! Setting stretch fitness goals led me into running and the world of sprint triathlons. The 2011 GR Tri was my first and the start of many more to come. The transformation hasn’t been just about healthy eating and fitness, however-it’s also about a balanced perspective on the whole of life. I’m wholly devoted to extended family in Michigan, Texas and California. I’m passionate about my career (at Priority Health). And there’s room for the other things that keep life interesting-like cooking, competitive barbecuing, international travel, serving as a volunteer (community and church), being an avid sports fan who believes you can never have too much hockey, and my newest craze-ballroom dancing!
ROAD CLOSURES // ANDY DAUKSTS
I never have actually ran a race or a TRI but I love to help out and volunteer when I can. I have been married to my wife Jenna for 5 years with a two year old son named Logan. I am a manager at a traffic control company and am also the head coach for Jenison varsity hockey. My sister Katie Belland and mom Barb have always asked me to help with races, the first one I helped with was the first GR Tri.
RUN COURSE // CHRIS GEORGE
Runner turned marathoner turned triathlete. Currently on a quest to become an Ironman in 2013. I love discovering new places and use endurance events as an excuse to travel to places that I might not normally get a chance to visit. When there is free time, I enjoy playing music in two bands. I am also the Setup / Tear down Champion for the GR Tri and Co-director of The Headless Horseman Chase (10 mile and 5k running event). I’m very excited to be part of the MiTi team.
SECURITY // TIM GUIKEMA
I was enjoying a Saturday afternoon, when all of a sudden some bikers, came speeding down my road, then more came. Sometime later they were on their way back, and then they came running by. I’m thinking these guys/gals are crazy, only to find out that a neighbor was hosting a small Triathlon out of his house. Lech Lecha was where it all started, I decided to “Tri” it the following year and when I came across the finish line, I was hooked. That is where the “Crazy” entered my life. 2011 was my first time doing a triathlon and there was no stopping me, besides the better shape/health that my body was in; I was having fun racing. 2012 started off with a torn meniscus and recovery, but with a good surgeon and time to recover, I am ready to go. I have a support team of a wife of 13 years, a 7 year old and 4 year old daughters to cheer me on. Being a previous Mt. Biker, I knew the riding was going to be easy, running was something I did for exercise but not racing, besides a 5K here a there. As for swimming, I just want to make sure I would not sink. With a little practice and tricks of the trade, I am doing 5-6 tri’s a summer. Life is good.
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!
SPECTATOR EXPERIENCE // EMMA BARANOWSKI
SWIM COURSE // RACHEL KRUG
A life-long swimmer, as a lifeguard and swim-lesson teacher I work primarily with very young kids, introducing them to and getting them comfortable in the water. I volunteered as a life guard at last year’s Tri to support my Triathlete dad (Go Mark!) and am excited to be a member of the team and surmount the challenges of coordinating open water on the swim course this year. I am a student at Grand Valley State University, a member of the Ultimate Frisbee club team, as well as a (very) amateur runner, while looking forward to a career in Catholic Youth Ministry.
TRANSITION // DAVID BRADY
I have been addicted to fitness since the early 80’s – Running 5K’s, 10K’s 25K’s, a Marathon and teaching aerobic classes. For years I have ran with my wife, friends, pushed my kids in running strollers and enjoy every opportunity to lead an active healthy lifestyle. In 2009 I competed in my first triathlon and was hooked! Since then I have completed in Sprint, Olympic and ½ Iron Distance Tri’s. Not sure if I will ever attempt a full – Michelle, my wife has asked that I promise I will never compete in one – I have yet to make that promise. I am looking forward to giving back to the Triathlon community by being a Champion for the inaugural MiTi. So far it has been rewarding to see all that takes place in the planning stages. I am looking forward to race day and seeing all the athletes that have made the commitment to achieve such a milestone in their lives!
TRANSITION // BRIAN JIROUS
I returned to running in 2010 with a goal to run the River Bank Run in May of 2011. I completed the 5/3 River Bank Run in May of 2011 and went on the quest for a new challenge and found triathlon. I completed the Barefoot triathlon and Reeds Lake triathlon on 2011 and set my sights towards Steelhead ½ Ironman race in August of 2012. I completed my first ½ Ironman at Steelhead and have already signed up for two more this year. I coach girls basketball as well and encourage them to stay healthy and be fit by setting the example in my own life. I am very active in the healthy-living community in West Michigan as a member of RUN GR and a Priority Health Champion. I love working with and encouraging people to set and achieve PR’s and to “tri” something new. I really look forward to getting to know the other side of the sport in a support role with MiTi. I am supported by my wife Liz and three girls who I do my best to keep up with through this sport.
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 // PRISCILLA HANSMA
Although I’ve have not done a triathlon, I have raced a few 1/2 marathons, several 5/3 River Bank Runs and have signed up to run my first full marathon. I joined the Miti to give back to the community and am excited to watch the athletics participate. I love Grand Rapids and don’t want to take it for granted. I am very involved in my church community and the insurance (health and life) community.
VOLUNTEER RECRUITMENT // CHRIS GATES
As a young boy I remember watching my father compete in triathlons, cheering him on from the sidelines I had no idea that someday we’d be doing them together.
5 years ago my father challenged me to 3 months of sobriety. I challenged him with 3 months of a healthier lifestyle and a fitness program, we agreed to compete in the reeds lake triathlon together after or 90 days was up. We had such a blast together we wanted to take it to the next level. The next year we did the Grand Rapids Tri Olympic Distance together. Last year we did the MiTi Half-Iron distance together, and this year we’ll complete the MiTi Full-Iron distance together. It’s been such an experience to be able to compete in these events with my father, pushing the limits of our bodies and improving our mental and physical health every step, pedal, and stroke of the way. I’m a Network Engineer for S. Abraham & Sons during the day and dabble in semi-professional photography on the side. I live in Grandville with my good friend Evan, who also participates in the triathlon events with my father and I.