Javier took over as LtN’s Executive Director in September 2015. He has been with the organization since 2012, spending two years volunteering as Program Director in Nicaragua before becoming Director of Programs and Marketing.
Javier was born in Colombia and moved to the US when he was young. His first introduction to lacrosse came in his hometown of Stamford, CT. During his junior and senior years, Javier helped establish a lacrosse program at his high school. It is where he fell in love with the game.
Javier went on to play for four years on the club team at the University of Connecticut. After graduation, he spent time in the business world before moving to Sweden to obtain his MSc in International Marketing & Brand Management from Lund University. During his time in Sweden, Javier traveled throughout Scandinavia as a player/coach for the Lund lacrosse team. After graduating in June 2011, Javier learned of LtN and knew he wanted to get involved.
Country Director, Nicaragua
Norman became the Nicaragua Country Director in October 2015. He has been with LtN since 2010 and was one of the first Nicaraguan coaches at the School of Hope in La Chureca. Norman became one of LtN’s best coaches and a true role model and leader for the kids in our programs and his fellow coaches. Having him take over as Country Director was the next logical step.
In his own words, “The past six years have been more than incredible. Though I must admit when I was first offered the job as a lacrosse coach I thought about it a lot, and before accepting I thought the sport was too violent for the community (La Chureca) where we were going to be working, a community very susceptible to violence. However, I took the job, and accepted the challenge. My favorite part of my experiences with LtN over the last few years has been my time training our LtN Scholars and coaches to help them become better coaches. To see how my own students can reach goals that I, nor they, could have hoped for. To see them teach to other kids the lessons, that for years, we have taught them is amazing.
I have seen a lot of change since I started with LtN – in the community, in our students and within LtN itself. For me, its been like a ladder that I’ve climbed rung by rung marked by every achievement I’ve had either with students, parents, coaches, teachers, or volunteers.
I’m very proud of being a part of and lead such an amazing group of coaches and volunteers who work to reach way beyond our goals. I’m thankful for all the support we receive everyday."
Country Director, Costa Rica
Carolina joined LtN as the Costa Rica Country Director in January 2017. Carolina brings an extensive lacrosse background and a passion for service to LtN’s Potrero program.
Carolina is from New Canaan, Connecticut and graduated from Northwestern University in June of 2016. At Northwestern, she received her B.A. in International Studies and Italian and also played on the varsity women’s lacrosse team. She has been playing lacrosse since the age of six, and has developed a passion for coaching and spreading her love for the sport. During her studies, she focused on international development and understands how valuable promoting education and health can be to a community. Carolina hopes to make a positive impact in Potrero and is looking forward to experiencing Costa Rican culture, advancing her Spanish, and being inspired by everybody involved with Lacrosse the Nations!
Director, Charlottesville VA
Natalie hails from Charlottesville, Virginia, where she played lacrosse at Albemarle High School. She was a starter on the 1996 State Championship team and later went on to play at Longwood University from 1997-2001. While at Longwood, she was a four-time IWLCA All-American and is Longwood’s career leader in both total points scored and assists, and ranks third in goals scored.
After college, she returned to Charlottesville and began teaching 6th grade Language Arts at Jack Jouett Middle School, where she still teaches today. She spent five years coaching at the high school level, first as head varsity coach at The Covenant School for two seasons, followed by three years at Albemarle, one as head JV coach and two as varsity head coach. During this time, she earned her Master’s Degree in Sports Leadership from Virginia Commonwealth University. Over the last eight years, she has coached players of all ages and worked with Blue Ridge Lacrosse Club, Seminole League, Albemarle Girls Lacrosse League, and YMCA. She enjoys spending time with her husband and two daughters, running, and reading. She is very excited about the opportunity to work with LtN and can’t wait to get out on the lacrosse field this year!
Nicaragua coaching staff
Luis Orlando Quintero López
Head - Chiquilistagua
Luis Orlando has been with LtN since September 2012. He began teaching grades 2-6, 300+ students, and assisting in monitoring our nutrition program at the school.
As of the 2016 school year Luis will be teaching all grades, over 700 students, and assisting with the development of all coaches and LtN Scholars at the Public School of Chiquilistagua.
Luis is 22 years old, happily married and has one son, Octavio, whom he loves dearly. In his free time Luis loves to read, play and watch sports. Luis has a passion for physical education and hopes to be a sports reporter one day. Through the LtN Coach’s Scholarship Program, Luis is pursuing two degrees, one in Journalism at the University of Managua (UdeM) and a bachelor’s in Physical Education at the National Autonomous University of Nicaragua (UNAN).
Luis says his time with LtN has been “…an incredible experience. In the time I’ve been with LtN I’ve seen a significant change in our students through the LtN curriculum. Lacrosse has served as an example to improve the behavior of our students. They have learned to play an aggressive sport with their classmates.
I’m grateful for all of the opportunities LtN has provided me over the years. Opportunities I’ve taken full advantage of to improve professionally and academically.”
Juan De La Cruz Devila
Upper School Lacrosse Coach - Chiquilistagua
Juan is a former student at the Public School of Chiquilistagua and one of our first LtN Scholars. In 2014 Juan worked with Country Director Norman at Club Hope, learning to be a coach first hand. In the 2015 school year Juan worked along side Coach Luis in the lower school of Chiquilistagua working with students grade 4-6. As of the 2016 school year Juan will be teaching grades 7-11, over 400 students, alongside coach Luis.
Juan is 22 years old, happily married and has one daughter. In his free time Juan plays a lot of soccer and is very active in his church as a member of the band. Through the LtN Scholars Program, Juan received his certificate as an electrical automotive engineer and plans to pursue a degree in English this semester.
When asked about LtN Juan had this to say “The first time I saw the sport I thought it was very innovative, rough, interesting and I thought I could be really good at it. I have learned so much from my experience, from the coaches and the kids. I love that the kids have trusted me so much so that I can help them with any issues or problems they have.“
Lower School Lacrosse Coach - Chiquilistagua
David graduated from the Public School of Chiquilistagua in December 2015. The 2016 school year will be his first year as a LtN coach.
David is 22 years old, plays soccer and enjoys spending time with his friends. Through the LtN Coach’s Scholarship Program, David is studying Physical Education at the Nicaraguan Institute of Sport (IND).
When David first saw lacrosse he thought “what a ridiculous sport, no way I would ever like it. Since we played as part of PE class I participated and slowly but surely I became more and more interested. Now I have the same goal that my coaches had with me – to motivate the kids I work with every day. I hope to learn a lot from the other coaches so I can run good classes and practices to our kids.“