A Dallas, Texas native, Mike Laitala was appointed Head Coach of Longhorn Aquatics in 2012, after serving as Associate Head Coach for three years. Over the course of his first quadrennium at the helm, Laitala has led TXLA to the Silver Medal in Club Excellence, while helping qualify four high school athletes to the 2016 Olympic Trials. In 2013 Mike served as an Assistant Coach to the United States Swimming Junior World Championships Team which competed in Dubai. There, his swimmer, Quinn Carrozza, earned a gold, silver, and bronze medal for her performances, while the US team earned the first place team title. Earlier in that year Carrozza had placed 8th in the 200 Free at the 2013 World Championship Trials. Over his first four years as Head Coach of Longhorn athletes have swam over 30 US Swimming top 10 ranked times, been finalists at Junior, Senior Nationals, World Championship Trials, and US Open events. On the state and local level, TXLA has seen numerous TAGS individual and relay titles, and set multiple Sectionals and Team records. Laitala’s swimmers have won Texas High School District, Regional, and State championships every year, and signed with Divison I and II colleges to continue their swimming careers.
Mike has over 15 years of coaching experience, both at the club levels, and in Division 1 collegiate competition, five years at the University of Denver. He was an All-American swimmer for the University of Texas men’s team, which earned the 2000 NCAA Team Title. He was a four-time TCIL High School State champion, junior national finalist swimmer in the late 90s, One of Mike’s favorite swimming experiences was representing his hometown Richardson, TX at the 2000 Olympic Trails. He holds a Bachelor’s degree in Kinesiology with an All-Level Teaching Credential from UT Austin. Mike currently lives in Austin with his wife Bridgette, and their two dogs, Buddy and Cissy.