America’s Best Kids Staff and Instructors


Senior Gymnastics Coach
Amy is a native Oregonian and lived in Eugene while training for gymnastics. She has three grown sons and three grandsons who still live in the Eugene area. Amy competed as an Elite gymnast for the National Academy in Eugene and has been coaching off and on for over 40 years. Her favorite event to coach is beam which was also her favorite to do! Motto: “I always get to where I’m going by walking away from where I’ve been.” - Christopher Robin
About Amy
Keslyn "Lynn"
Swim Instructor
Keslyn is a swim instructor at ABK.
About Keslyn
Enrichment Department Leader
Bri leads the Enrichment team - including After School Care and Summer Camps at America's Best Kids.
About Bri
Owner, President America’s Best Kids Inc.
Don holds a 5th degree black belt in Tae Kwon Do, is the Chief Master Instructor for all the Oregon America’s Best Karate Academies, and he serves as President of America’s Best Kids, Inc. Mr. Berryessa started his martial arts training at six years old when his father, an accomplished Judo practitioner and wrestler, would spend hours wrestling and showing him moves on the living room floor. From this solid foundation, he pursued more formal training in a wide variety of disciplines. In 1992 Master Berryessa became partners with five-time World Champion, Master George Chung (founder of America’s Best Karate), as well as three-time World Champion, Master Anthony Chan. Through this alliance and the help of dedicated instructors like Master Waldschmidt and Master Penner they built one of the most successful Martial Arts programs in the country. In 2000 Master Berryessa decided to leave the organization to spend more time with his wife and family. On September 11, 2001 Master Berryessa opened America’s Best Karate of Medford in a small 1200 sq. ft facility. Master Berryessa, like many on that day, felt an even greater responsibility as an American to help his country. He felt the best way he could do this was to help as many children as possible learn values, life skills, and principles. He knew that virtues like responsibility, honesty, trust, perseverance, stewardship and servitude were naturally ingrained in the teachings of Martial Arts, but he wanted to provide even more programs to mentor youth. So, with the help of his wife Sheri Berryessa, a Black Belt and accomplished gymnast, along with several very dedicated teachers at ABK, they created the current 30,000 square foot Americas Best Kids Sports and Learning Center that helps mentor more than 1500 children weekly.
About Don
Owner, Gymnastics Director
Sheri is a National Instructor for USA Gymnastics and has many certifications in recreational, preschool and competitive gymnastics. She has taught gymnastics for over 30 years and has a Bachelors of Science in Business Administration. My favorite thing about teaching and coaching are those moments when a student really understands something. I love it when you see the look on their face that screams, "I GOT IT"!
About Sheri
Swim & Dance Instructor
Sophia teaches swim at America's Best Kids.
About Sophia
Gymnastics Coach
Gracie is a recreational level gymnastics coach.
About Gracie
Senior Swim Instructor
Brooke teaches swim at ABK.
About Brooke
Swim Instructor and Enrichment Assistant
Angel teaches swim and assists in the enrichment programs at ABK.
About Angel
Gymnastics Coach
Emily coaches gymnastics at ABK.
About Emily
ABK Dance Program Department Leader
About Erica: Erica is a very hard worker and LOVES what she does. She not only runs the Dance Program at ABK, but she is also the mother of two beautiful girls and the lead singer of a local country/rock band. Erica grew up dancing and singing starting at the age of 3 with styles including: Ballet, Tap, Jazz, Contemporary, and Hip Hop. Erica continues to grow her education in dance by attending workshops and takes classes online to further her knowledge as a dance instructor. Motto: “You will never fail until you stop trying.”
About Erica
ABK Customer Service Department Leader & Human Resources
Heidi has been coaching gymnastics from preschool age through the competitive team level for more than 20 years and joined the ABK family in 2013. While she currently spends more time at the Customer Service desk and behind the scenes administratively, it’s her passion for the sport of gymnastics that originally brought her to ABK. Heidi is an active and certified Level 10 rated gymnastics judge and serves on the USA Gymnastics Oregon State Administrative Committee as the Xcel Representative in her spare time. By far, though, her favorite past time, is spending time with her husband, Shane, and 2 sons, Jack and Max. Motto: “You are what you repeatedly do. Excellence then, is not an act, but a habit.” - Aristotle
About Heidi
Lead Karate Instructor
Shane has studied martial arts throughout his life, mainly Kempo and more recently Tae Kwon Do. Mr. Fogarty graduated from the Art Institute of Seattle with a degree in Computer Animation and Multimedia. Mr. Fogarty currently serves as one of the lead instructors for America’s Best Karate of North Medford. In addition, he is a certified unarmed security professional. Mr. Fogarty enjoys outdoor activities, knife throwing, table top gaming, and spending time with his wife and 2 sons.
About Shane
Dance Instructor
Leah teaches dance, mostly hip hop, at ABK.
About Leah
Gymnastics Coach
Halle has been a part of ABK since the age of 2! She loves all things gymnastics! Halle was a gymnast here at ABK for almost 15 years, ending her gymnastics career as a Level 7 team leader! Motto: “Don’t let your fears interfere with your outcomes.”
About Halle
Dance Instructor
Gianna is an assistant dance instructor at ABK.
About Gianna
Swim Instructor
Elliot is a swim instructor at ABK.
About Elliot
Swim Instructor
Brittney is a swim instructor at ABK.
About Brittney
CH24 Department Leader & Customer Service Representative
Heather is the CH24 Department Leader and Customer Service Representative.
About Heather
Swim Instructor
Kirsten is a swim instructor at ABK.
About Kirsten
Gymnastics Coach and Enrichment Instructor
Chrislyn says ABK is her favorite place to work! She has a dog named Dean, and he's her baby. Chrislyn has been working with children for 10+ years, and did gymnastics at ABK as a child. She absolutely loves working with children. Teaching is what she is most passionate about, and she hopes to open her own preschool one day. Motto: ¡Sea feliz!
About Chrislyn
Aquatics Department Leader
Coach Kenny has been teaching swim for 25 years and LOVES the water! He is the father of two awesome boys, Brennan and Kai, and husband to his phenomenal wife Beth since 2011. When not in the pool at ABK Kenny’s favorite pastimes include photography, running, karate, hiking, and KNITTING!
About Kenny
Gymnastics Department Leader and Team ABK Gymnastics Head Coach
Alyssa has lived in the Rogue Valley her whole life and graduated from Crater High School. She married her husband in 2014 and had a son, Wade, in 2017. Alyssa loves tacos and tea. She has been coaching since 2008 here at ABK and currently coaches everything from babies to teens at every level of gymnastics ABK has to offer. Alyssa was a gymnast for 14 years prior to coaching and has coached many state and regional champions in her career thus far. Alyssa’s favorite event to coach is Uneven Bars. Motto: “All you touch and all you see is all your life will ever be.”
About Alyssa
Gymnastics Department Leader
Andrea, also known as Coach Dre, loves kids and teaching. Always bringing a smile is her biggest contribution to the ABK environment. Andrea started at ABK as a student in various activities, has been coaching since 2013, and a gymnastics department leader since 2017. Andrea is also one of our preschool teachers and a Starguard certified lifeguard. Motto: "Ohana" means family. Family means one one gets left behind."
About Andrea
Karate Instructor
Mr. Mann started martial arts later in life in 2010 and has been teaching for more than 7 years. Before martial arts he was an Oregon state champion BMX racer (1984), a U.S. Army Combat Veteran (1990), and has been a Network Administrator for over 20 years. Mr. Mann received his Associates Degree in Computer Science in 1997. In his spare time, he likes to play both computer and tabletop games.
About Wade
Dance Teacher
Megan is a dance teacher at ABK and a mother of 2 baby boys. She is going to school to become a teacher and has experience working with kids from internships at Kidventure preschool, Jewett Elementary, and Walker Elementary. She has practiced ballet since she could walk and loves teaching everything she knows to her students. “Life isn’t about waiting for the storm to pass, it’s about learning how to dance in the rain” Vivian Greene
About Megan
Swim Instructor
Mia is a swim instructor at ABK.
About Mia
Swim Instructor
Jade teaches swim at ABK.
About Jade
Lead Preschool Teacher
Rhiannon is a veteran ABK Preschool teacher who is much beloved by ALL of the sweet faces who have graced her classroom. She has a two year degree in early childhood education and a passion for working with children and watching them learn. She is married to her high school sweetheart and they have two awesome kiddos together. Motto: “The teacher is the one who gets the most out of the lessons, and the true teacher is the learner.” -Elbert Hubbard
About Rhiannon
Swim Instructor
Ezra teaches swim at ABK.
About Ezra
Senior Vice President and Martial Arts Department Leader
Russ was born and raised in southern Oregon and is a father of 3 boys. He is a 4th degree black belt, receiving his Master in 2010 right here at America’s Best Karate. Russ has been involved in martial arts since 1995 and holds a few rankings in the NBL/SKIL circuit. . In addition to his many years of studying Tae Kwon Do he has also trained in Karate, Boxing, Jiu-Jitsu, wrestling and weapons. At the age of 14 he became an assistant instructor with Master Berryessa and found he had a passion for teaching. By the age of 16 Master O’Connor was teaching full time as a lead instructor working with students from 3 to 70 years of age. Master O’Connor has conducted hundreds of safety and leadership seminars in public and private elementary schools throughout the Rogue Valley as well as numerous Women’s Self Defense workshops. Motto: "What lies behind you and what lies in front of you, pales in comparison to what lies inside of you." R.W. Emerson
About Russ
Gymnastics Coach
Ellianna started out at ABK as a gymnast. As a competitive team athlete, Ellie has amassed a collection of awards, including numerous state titles. After "retiring" from competitive gymnastics Ellianna joined the coaching team.
About Ellianna
Maintenance & Facilities Manager
Tim is the father of 3 kids and has been working in the America's Best Kids organization for nearly 20 years in multiple capacities - from teaching karate and gymnastics to maintaining the equipment and overseeing construction projects at all three facilities
About Tim
Karate Instructor
Ryan Riley is a 3rd degree black belt. He started martial arts when he was eight and is now twenty-one years old. He has been training for over ten years, many of which he assisted and taught classes here at America’s Best Karate of North Medford. He originally started Tae Kwon Do because he had friends who also trained and found that he naturally picked up the forms and various techniques taught to him. Through the years he has found his own meaning for martial arts in his life. Testing for his second-degree black belt is when he truly felt a sense that there is meaning in his life with martial arts.
About Ryan
Customer Service & Administration
About Nicole
Gymnastics Coach
Natalie coaches gymnastics at ABK.
About Natalie
Customer Service
Cassie is the smiling face at the customer service desk.
About Cassie
Enrichment Director
As the Enrichment Director at America's Best Kids, every day Jordan has the extraordinary privilege of working with amazing students! His strengths include the ability to work with a variety of age groups, and to create a fun, and safe environment for students and their families. Motto: "In every job that must be done, there is an element of fun."
About Jordan
Karate Instructor
Whitney Starr-Stensrud is a 2nd degree black belt. She started training in Taekwondo when she was 10, but only practiced for a few years before changing gears to pursue music. She came back to martial arts 20 years later at ABK and Boyce Kenpo where she has been pursuing both arts over the last 5 years excelling in sparring and Escrima sticks. Whitney began instructing Taekwondo at ABK in 2021. She graduated from The Conservatory of Recording Arts and Sciences and has been a drummer and percussionist for over 25 years, giving lessons and instructing percussion at schools. Whitney is still actively playing drums for a touring hard rock band. She enjoys spending time with her husband and two children who are also involved in music and martial arts.
About Whitney
Swim Instructor
Hannah teaches swim at ABK.
About Hannah
Jason can be seen most mornings at ABK, singing and cleaning his way through the day. If you've ever encountered Jason, you've surely left with a smile on your face.
About Jason
Gymnastics Coach
Victoria started out at ABK as a gymnast. As a competitive team athlete, Tori reached level 8 and had much success, including winning multiple state titles. After "retiring" from competitive gymnastics Victoria joined the coaching team.
About Victoria
Customer Service
Anne is one of the smiling faces you see at the front desk.
About Anne
Gymnastics Coach
Kristi is a gymnastics coach at ABK.
About Kristi
Swim Instructor
Roxie teaches swim lessons at ABK.
About Roxie
Swim Instructor
Corina teaches swim lessons at ABK.
About Corina
Dance Teacher
Annalise teaches dance at ABK.
About Annalise
Gymnastics Coach and Customer Service
Katrina teaches gymnastics and is the welcoming face at the front desk now and again.
About Katrina