Meet Our Instructors

Brooklyn Blades on Ice Directors: GraceAnn Demarest & Elizabeth Misson

GraceAnn and Elizabeth are sisters and have been directors of Brooklyn’s Learn-To-Skate Program since 2000.


GraceAnn Demarest

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GraceAnn has enjoyed working as a professional figure skating coach since 1997 and has been involved in figure skating for more than 40 years.

As a skater, she competed at the U.S. Figure Skating Regional Championships and achieved Gold medalist test status in both Moves in the Field and Free Skating. She recently accomplished her Solo Bronze Dance test (and is currently working on more dance tests!) GraceAnn skated professionally with Disney On Ice (2001-2003) performing in 14 countries. She also earned BA in Psychology from Cleveland State University  in 1999.

GraceAnn is a member of the Professional Skaters Association and was a team leader at the 2017 USFS Components Camp. She is a board member of the Brooklyn Figure Skating Club and teaches at various rinks throughout the Cleveland area. GraceAnn coaches skaters of all ages from beginners through advanced tested and competitive skaters. She and her husband, Chris, both coach figure skating and have 2 sons and a daughter.

“As a skating coach it is my job to help a student learn proper technique, build upon self-confidence, develop their creativity, and set goals. Whether it is landing their first axel or learning how to glide on one foot across the ice, I love to see a skater accomplish what they have worked hard for.”
Email: gsteck24@gmail.com


Elizabeth Misson

 

Elizabeth has been involved in figure skating for more than 30 years. She has been teaching both private lessons and group lessons since 1998.

She is the creative director for the Brooklyn Ice Shows and the Brooklyn Blades on Ice Performance Ensemble, as well as the head coach/choreographer of the Cleveland Skating Club Theatre on Ice Intermediate team and an assistant choreographer for the Cleveland Skating Club Ice Show. 
Elizabeth is a U.S. Figure Skating quadruple USFS gold-medalist, having accomplished Senior (Gold) Moves, Senior (Gold) Free Skate, Senior (Gold) Ice Dance and Senior (Gold) Free Dance tests. She has also accomplished her Senior (Gold) Free Skate test for Skate Canada.
She is an American Ice Theatre Certified Choreographer, Director of American Ice Theatre Cleveland, a member of the Professional Skater’s Association and writes blog articles for Learn-to-Skate USA and usfigureskating.org.
Elizabeth competed in the Senior Ladies division at Eastern Great Lakes Regionals and the U.S. Figure Skating National Collegiate Championships for several years.
A mom of 2 boys and a stepmom, she also works as a Communications Specialist in the Philanthropy Institute at Cleveland Clinic.
“Skating is truly a life-long sport. You are never too old to find joy on the ice. I truly believe that everyone has something valuable to learn and contribute, no matter how long they have been skating. What makes me happy is when my students discover their true love for the ice and continue to make skating a part of their life, no matter what stage of life they are in.”


Chris Demarest

CDemarest
Chris has been involved in figure skating for more than 25 years. He has been teaching both private lessons and group lessons for 18 years.
He was a performer for Disney On Ice for 2 years, along with is wife, GraceAnn, who is also a professional figure skating instructor.
Chris is a USFS triple gold medalist, having completed his Senior (Gold) Moves, Senior (Gold) Free Skate  and Senior (Gold) Ice Dance tests. He has also completed his Novice Free Dance test. Chris competed in the Regional, Sectional, and National Collegiate levels in the Senior Men’s division, and both Regionally and Sectionally as a competitive ice dancer.
Chris is also a dad of 3, and works at MRI Software in Solon, Ohio.
Email: cdemarest42@gmail.com


Heather Galgas

HGalgas

Heather has been involved in figure skating for more than 30 years. She teaches both private lessons and group lessons and has taught many skaters from their first steps on the ice through high school graduation and beyond.
Heather is part of a ‘skating family’ – her husband, Briant Galgas is a hockey coach. Her daughter is a figure skater, and her two sons also play competitive hockey.
Email: hrcskates@cox.net


Cheryl Genda

CGenda

Cheryl has been teaching both group and private lessons for 20 years, and has been with Brooklyn Blades on Ice for more than 15 years. As a skater, Cheryl has accomplished her Intermediate Moves in the Field, Pre-Juvenile Freeskating and Prelimiary Dance tests. Cheryl still enjoys skating for fun and wishes to take more skating tests in the future.
“I enjoy teaching skating to both children and adults and helping them accomplish their goals. I feel that it is important to have fun and also learn proper technique. Skating is positive activity and is a great way to stay in shape, maintain your overall health and a great way to socialize!”
Email: cherylgenda@gmail.com


Rachel Gray

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Rachel has been skating for more than 12 years and has been an instructor for more than five years. She is a competitive singles skater and has also competed nationally with the Ice Theatre of Cleveland.
Rachel is a U.S. Figure Skating triple gold medalist, having accomplished her Senior (Gold) Moves, Senior (Gold) Free Skate and Senior (Gold) Solo Free Dance.
She loves performing, choreographing, teaching, and connecting with students, and aspires to be a master rated coach in Moves in the Field, Ice Dance and Freestyle. Rachel is currently a College Credit Plus student focusing on Early Childhood Education, Nutrition and Psychology.
“My favorite things about teaching are seeing skaters have fun and helping them reach their goals. I believe it’s crucial to help skaters master their technique to build the confidence and skills in preparation for the next level. Skating is a great sport to be involved in because it provides useful life lessons as well as lifelong friendships. I have always had a very positive experience with skating, and I hope to share that with my skaters.”


Hiba Hassan

Hiba is a graduate of Padua High School and is a student at Cleveland State University. She began skating in the Brooklyn Blades on Ice years ago and is also a member of the Brooklyn FSC and the BBOI Performance Ensemble. Hiba enjoys performing and competing with the Padua High School Figure Skating Team where she has been a member throughout high school. She is working towards her Pre-Juvenile Moves in the Field test and Preliminary Free Skate.


Kaelynn Higgins

   

Kaelynn has been skating for more than 13 years and has an associate’s degree in Early Childhood Education from Lorain County Community College. She has competed as a singles skater for more than 12 years. She is also an avid participant in the U.S. Figure Skating National Showcase event where she K_Higgins earned the Pewter Medal in the 2018 Teen Dramatic event and the Gold Medal in the 2019 Senior Interpretive Event.  Kaelynn has  accomplished her Senior (Gold) Moves, Senior (Gold) Solo Free Dance, Silver Dance and Novice Free Skate tests. She is continuing to work toward achieving her Senior (Gold) tests in Free Skate and Partnered Pattern Dance. She have been coaching Learn to Skate since 2019 and also teaches private lessons.
I love teaching skating to help my students learn new skills, accomplish their goals, and watch them grow as skaters.”


Alexis Martin

Alexis is going to be a junior at Padua Franciscan High School for the 2022-2023 school year. She began skating 12 years ago. Alexis has been a member of the Brooklyn Blades on Ice Performance Ensemble

team for more than 7 years. She has been a member of the Padua High Skating Figure Skating team for 3 years and has won the state championships with the team. She is working towards her Novice Moves in the Field and Pre-Juvenile Free Skate. Alexis joined the Brooklyn Blades on Ice Learn-to-Skate staff in 2022.


Chloe O’Brien

In her 10th year of skating, Chloe is a freshman at Cleveland State University. Chloe was a volunteer instructor prior to starting her coaching career in 2018. Chloe has passed Senior (Gold) Moves, Senior (Gold) Solo Free Dance and Intermediate Free Skate and continues to work towards achieving her Gold Free Skate. As a competitive singles skater she has competed locally and nationally; including the Ohio High School Team Championships and U.S. Figure Skating National Showcase events. Chloe also has an array of knowledge in music cutting and editing as well as U.S. Figure Skating events and rules.

Email: obrienchloe25@gmail.com

“My favorite part about teaching is seeing smiling faces when kids learn to do a new skill or pass on to the next level. I love knowing that I am impacting the next generation of skaters.”