Meet the Coaches

The coaches of Team Charleston have a combined experience of over 50 years in teaching, climbing, teambuilding, and yoga. All of our coaches have a passion for the sport of climbing and are eager to share that passion. Our coaches are always striving to improve themselves as teachers, mentors, and climbers and are constantly seeking professional development. All of our coaches possess a minimum of 1st Aid and CPR certification, have successfully completed the U.S Olympic Committees’ Safe Sport Training, and have had either a Federal or SLED background check.
Robert Lavarnway, Head Coach & Climbing Wall Manager
Robert has been with CCPRC since 2006. Prior to his position here, he was the Teen Director at a Charlotte YMCA. Robert has been climbing for over 18 years throughout North Carolina, New York, South Dakota, Colorado, Oregon, and California, including Yosemite Valley. Robert enjoys working with youth and sharing the outdoors with them. He believes strongly in working together as a team and has many years of experience facilitating corporate team building. Robert is a certified Wilderness First Responder, Climbing Wall Instructor, USA Climbing Certified Coach and Route Setter, high angle rescue technician, and an American Mountain Guides Association Single Pitch Instructor. Contact Coach Robert.
TJ Turner, Strength & Conditioning Coach
TJ grew up in the Lower Shenandoah Valley, where he gained appreciation for the mountains and waterways of Virginia. In 2001, he started his career in recreation by obtaining a snowboard certification through the Professional Ski Instructors of America. TJ holds a degree in Kinesiology from James Madison University. While at JMU, TJ worked with the University Outdoor Program running programs all around the Shenandoah Valley, West Virginia, and Maryland. TJ also holds a M.S in Recreation, Parks, and Tourism Administration from Western Illinois University. TJ has worked for CCPRC since 2010 and currently works full-time for the American Canoe Association. TJ is a certified Climbing Wall Instructor, USA Climbing Certified Coach, and is certified in Wilderness First Aid.