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Instructor Bios

Instructor Biographies

Introducing Tahoe Donner’s 2015 season tennis squad!

Doug tennis 2013 - bio photo
Name: Ian Mindell, Director of TennisName: Doug Kaut, Head Tennis Pro
Hometown: Winnipeg, CanadaHometown: Kansas City, MO
What brought him to TD: “The opportunity to direct Tahoe Donner’s tennis programs.”What brought him to TD: TBD
Favorite thing to do in TD or favorite season/amenity at TD and why: “Besides playing tennis, I love the bike trails and rock climbing areas all around the Tahoe Donner area.”Favorite thing to do in TD or favorite season/amenity at TD and why: TBD
Background: “I started teaching tennis 20+ years ago in the Palm Springs area. I have worked at La Quinta Resort since 2001 and at Tahoe Donner since 2008. My wife and three children have called the Tahoe area our Summer home since 2005 and we always look forward to our time together at the beaches, lakes, playgrounds, trails, restaurants, shops and all of the other wonderful things that Tahoe Donner and the surrounding areas have to offer.”Background: A professional-level certified teaching pro since 1988, Doug brings over 25 years of experience in running programs for all ages and ability levels. He was the Director of Tennis at Cardinal Hill Swim & Racquet Club in Vienna, VA, just outside of Washington DC, from 2003-2014. Born and raised in Kansas City, Missouri, Doug attended Bollettieri’s Tennis Academy first as a player and then as an instructor. His tennis background includes coaching nationally ranked juniors and coaching on the ATP and WTA Tours. Over the past 25 years Doug has worked for Renaissance Tennis Management, La Quinta Resort & Club, and Tahoe Donner in Truckee, CA. Doug is a Certified Professional by PTR, RPT (Spanish Coaching Methods) and by the Modern Tennis Methodology Coaching Academy (MTMCA) USA as an MTM Tennis Professional for excellence in tennis coaching. Along with coaching, Doug and his wife Missy compete in the Husband and Wife Mixed Doubles tournaments nationally.
Jua Benitez
Name: Juan Benitez
Name: Woody Verzaal
Hometown: Medellin, ColombiaHometown: Shreveport, LA
What brought him to TD: “For the chance to enjoy this beautiful place and teach this awesome sport at the same time.”What brought him to TD: “The opportunity to become a great coach under Ian’s instruction.”
Favorite thing to do in TD or favorite season/amenity at TD and why:
“Getting to know new people and make new friendships.”
Favorite thing to do in TD or favorite season/amenity at TD and why: “Everything!”
Background: Born in Medellin, Colombia, starting tennis as the age of four, Juan is exceptionally experienced in the game, which gives him an edge in developing tennis athletes. Juan is currently a full scholarship collegiate athlete at Baylor University whose tennis program is currently ranked #2 in the country. As a younger player, he was ranked #1 Colombia in 16s and 18s and also became #1 in Best South American’s in the 16s. Additionally, he represented Colombia in the Junior Davis Cup. Juan’s highest ITF junior ranking was #240. In his later career, before deciding to attend Baylor University to develop my tennis skill set, he won 4 ITF tournaments located in Bolivia, Peru and two in Argentina. Juan was able to acquire an ATP singles ranking #820 and #620 doubles ranking. Juan’s top wins were against Julio Campozano who was ranking #200 ATP, Facundo Mena #440 ATP, Michael Quintero #240 ATP, Nicolas Barrientos #260 ATP, and Juan Pablo Paz #430 ATP.Background: ” I began playing tennis seriously when I was 12, and I taught lessons along with my dad for 10 years at his club in Shreveport. I began playing at Baylor University where I became #47 in collegiate doubles, and this is my final year of collegiate tennis. This will be my first year at Tahoe Donner and I am looking forward to it! ”