Meet Our Coaches

COACH: CHRIS WATERS

chris

LEVEL 1 TRAINER/GENERAL MANAGER

Chris is from Panama City, FL and moved to Huntsville after receiving his Bachelor’s in Architecture from Auburn University.  Chris was a high school cross country runner.  He started CrossFit in 2018 and enjoyed the fun and encouraging atmosphere of group classes.  Chris is passionate about coaching and helping everyone improve their health and fitness.

COACH: MELISSA WATERS

melissa

LEVEL 1 TRAINER/COACHING THE AGING ATHLETE CERT.

Melissa is from Huntsville, AL and is a software safety engineer.  Melissa found CrossFit in 2018 and quickly fell in love the sport.  She lost over 80 lbs and strives to improve every day.  As an athlete with osteoarthritis, Melissa is passionate about teaching others the importance of improving their health and nutrition to improve quality of life.  She maintained her Coaching the Aging Athlete Certificate in order to focus on scaling and keeping athletes of all ages safe and moving.  Melissa is also one of our CrossFit Kids trainers.

COACH: JESS JOHNSON

Jess Coach Pic

LEVEL 1 TRAINER

Jess is from Clay, AL.  She has a Master’s in Art Education from The University of Alabama in Birmingham (UAB) and is Program Director of the Visual Art Magnet Program at Lee High School.  While at UAB, her gymnastics and cheer background enabled her to become part of both the D1 co-ed and All Girls Cheer Teams.  She was also a National Stunt Champion.  Jess joined CrossFit in 2019 to enhance her performance in the Rocket City Roller Derby!  She fell in love with CrossFit and became Level 1 Trainer.  Jess loves working with athletes that are actively invested in themselves and taking steps to improve their health and wellbeing.

COACH: ALICIA HARRISON

Alicia

LEVEL 1 TRAINER/ GYMNASTIC SPECIALTY COURSE CERT.

Alicia grew up in Huntsville, Alabama where she earned her Bachelors in Electrical Engineering and Masters in Systems Engineering from University of Alabama in Huntsville. Alicia started CrossFit in 2017. She wanted to get back into an active lifestyle. Now as a coach, she loves to connect with each athlete by inspiring them to achieve new movements, get stronger, and lift spirits! She loves to see the members at Empire South succeed and reach their goals.

COACH: Jason saunders

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LEVEL 2 TRAINER

Jason grew up in Huntsville, Alabama. He is a Level 2 Trainer. Jason loves Olympic lifting and also coaches our CFES Barbell Club.  Jason loves coaching others especially our youth in Sports Performance.

COACH: Keesha saunders

LEVEL 2 TRAINER

Keesha was introduced to CrossFit by her brother-in-law in 2013 after many failed attempts to get fit at
globo-gyms. She has never looked back. Keesha has been coaching people of all fitness levels in CrossFit
for more than 7 years. She loves the methodology and the fact that any workout can be scaled to
anyone’s ability. Keesha loves coaching and helping people do things with their fitness they never
thought they could. Keesha’s favorite movements are Olympic lifts and heavy squats.

COACH: SCOTT RAUER

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LEVEL 2 TRAINER

Scott grew up in Rocky Point, New York, a small town in Eastern Long Island. He graduated from West Point and served 22 years in the Army, completing a Master’s Degree at Georgia Tech along the way. While serving in the Army Special Operations, Scott was first introduced to CrossFit in 2007. In 2016, he started coaching and has enjoyed sharing what he’s learned throughout the years from many great coaches he has worked with, his wife Tracey is also a L2 CrossFit Coach. He emphasizes the benefits of CrossFit and improve the health of all who workout at CFES.

COACH: ERIN STEINFATH

Erin

LEVEL 1 TRAINER

Erin grew up in Huntsville, Alabama.  She earned her undergrad from The University of Alabama and her Masters in Accountancy at the University of Alabama in Huntsville.  Erin started CrossFit in 2012, in order to get back in shape after the birth of her first child.  Erin’s favorite CrossFit movements are burpees, handstand pushups, and power cleans, and she loves the community and comradery the sport provides.  As a coach, Erin loves encouraging athletes and assisting them in meeting their health and fitness goals.

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