Director of Lifestyle & Wellness
Valeria Batross
Originally from Peru, Valeria started her fitness journey at the age of 18. For the past 25 years, she has shared and implemented her expertise at renowned clubs such as Tradition Golf Club, Thunderbird, Mission Hills, Sun City Shadow Hills and Toscana Country Club, where she implemented training programs including TPI Golf Fitness, TRX Suspension Training, Power Plate Vibration Training, Corrective & Functional Strength Training and Trigger Point Release Therapy. Valeria has expanded her knowledge on Mindfulness and Wellbeing Living with the Hoffman Institute. She has trained athletes of all levels in various sports such as Water Polo, Long Distance Running, Golf, and has helped her clients achieve milestones such as complete marathons. Hobbies include dancing, reading and hiking. She is also an Amateur Natural Bikini Competitor. Valeria enjoys spending summers in Switzerland with her husband and 15-year old son. She is the proud recipient of the 2019 Desert Health Wellness Award.
 
Assistant Spa Director & Massage Therapist
Michelle Choin
Michelle’s passion and love of massage therapy began early in life. Michelle has been a Licensed Massage Therapist for 20+ years and her passion remains intact. Michelle specializes in Swedish, Therapeutic, Sports, Trigger point therapy, and Deep Tissue Massage. She also customizes her client’s experience to enhance their overall well-being. Her goal is to help each member achieve the stability and balance required to enjoy an active lifestyle. Michelle is a nurturer at heart. Her vast clientele and close friends say she has “healing hands” and her purpose is to pass those healing properties to you. Michelle’s hobbies include reading, taking educational classes and staying focused on the gift of having a balanced life.
 
Spa Attendant
Katherine Cuomo
Katherine was born in Surrey, England; residing in United States since 2004. Her love for spa and wellness began with her late grandmother, whose bathroom cabinet she explored as a young girl. Katherine found various types of creams and makeup that she subsequently started borrowing and buying for herself. Katherine chose a career in the spa industry because she loves making people feel better about themselves, and it will always reminds her of her grandmother. She is currently learning how to play electric guitar from her very talented musician fiancé. Katherine’s hobbies are hiking, mountain biking, live music shows and video games.
 
FST Practitioner
Jason Ditter
Jason is a Level II Fascial Stretch Therapist and a Personal Trainer. He has been an advocate for health and wellness for the past 12 years. Jason’s fitness philosophy is that no two bodies are exactly alike, therefore, each client represents an opportunity to customize each experience. He loves working with a diverse clientele and has the keen ability to help others not only achieve their aesthetic goals, but also to help them improve their daily activities and become pain free. Jason has participated in athletics most of his life; including 16 years of soccer and four years of rugby. Outside of fitness, his hobbies include reading, amateur filmmaking and raising his wonderful daughter. He lives life to the fullest and is passionate about assisting others living their best lives too.
 
Massage Therapist
Gabriela Fetes
Gabriela is experienced in sports, deep tissue, prenatal, Swedish, cranial sacral, hot stone and reflexology. She became a United States citizen in 2006 and worked many years as a personal assistant as well as in-home healthcare. In her spare time, she loves to teach dance for both children and adults.
 
Personal Trainer
Elise Goldner
Elise, originally from London, England moved to California over 10 years ago. Back home, she worked in corporate banks, teaching classes and customizing workouts for her clients. She has over 20 years of experience in the fitness industry with various disciplines. She is certified in Yoga, Pilates, Personal Training, Reiki Master, Meditation, and Hypnotherapy for past life regression. Elise is passionate about health and the power to self-heal. She has also given lectures on true nutrition, Yoga, and meditation. Elise looks forward to sharing her knowledge and impact lives along the way.
 
Massage Therapist & Esthetician
Misako Hanson
Misako was born and raised in Japan where she worked as a Medical Technologist at Chubu National Hospital for 10 years before moving to the United States in 1996. She is now a dual licensed Massage Therapist and Esthetician. In 2005, Misako graduated from California Beauty College. In 2015 she became a Certified Massage therapist with a MBLEx National Certification. She gained experience at Mission Hills Country Club, The Ritz-Carlton in Rancho Mirage and La Quinta Resort & Club, A Waldorf - Astoria Resort. Misako specializes in Therapeutic and Deep Tissue massage, Swedish, Reflexology, and Hot Stone. She is trained in various skincare product lines, such as Eminence and experienced in HydraFacial MD, LED light therapy and microdermabrasion. Outside of work, Misako enjoys playing golf with her husband, Kent who works at Thunderbird Country Club. They have two children, who are in the nursing program at California State San Bernardino, Palm Desert Campus.
 
Spa Attendant
Arlynes Marcos
Arlynes is originally from Guatemala, but has lived in the Coachella Valley almost her entire life. She enjoys working in fitness and spa because she believes self-care begins with tending to one's mind, body and soul. She takes care of herself by finding time to clear her mind through both swimming and hiking.
 
Hiking Guide
Carol Menefee
With over 35 years of experience, Carol’s love of hiking began in the Sierra Nevada Mountains in Lake Tahoe National Forest, Yosemite and the eastern side of the Sierras. After moving to the Coachella Valley over 25 years ago, her love continued for the surrounding desert and mountains. From Mt. San Gorgonio, San Jacinto, Joshua Tree National Park, to the lows of Mecca’s Ladder Canyon, as well as the Salton Sea, Carol has become a self-taught geologist and continues to be fascinated by the valley’s geography. Among her mountaineering accomplishments, Carol has climbed Mt. Whitney at 14,484 ft. five times and has led numerous groups into the Grand Canyon. She looks forward to guiding our Members on hikes that explore the local Indian tribe’s history and the beautiful flora and fauna our valley holds. Come out and see what there is to enjoy!
 
Fitness Attendant
Lupe Navarete
 
Massage Therapist
Stan Remi
Stan has trained in both Europe and USA working for 25 years in physical therapy, pain control, spa and clients homes in places such as Marina Del Ray, Santa Monica, Beverly Hills, Scottsdale and Palm Desert. He has worked with variety of clients including movie stars, doctors, professional athletes and most people with pain problems to include back, shoulders and knees. Since 2006, he has worked as an official massage therapist at the BNP Paribas Open in Indian Wells. He specializes in sports massage with stretching for golf and tennis players as well as medical massages. Extra skills include precision neuromuscular therapy, water exercise and personal training for people with medical problems post physical therapy sessions. He enjoys sailing, hiking, mountain climbing, scuba diving and outdoor activities.
 
Esthetician
Sherry Rhodes
Sherry is a licensed aesthetician customizing in skincare treatments to individual needs such as peels and acne. She holds certifications in Califronia, Nevada and Ohio as a aesthetician. She is certified as a microblading artist as well as a makeup artist. Sherry is a devoted mother and grandmother. She has held careers in beauty, fashion and interior design with Stephen Minister Certified Floral Designer.
 
Fitness Attendant
Sarai Rojas
Sarai Rojas has been a fitness and spa team member at The Lakes since 2018. As a Fitness Attendant, she has had the pleasure of meeting the wonderful membership and their guests. Being able to help members with their inquiries gives her a sense of accomplishment. Sarai takes pride in making everyone's experience even better than the last. As a fitness enthusiast, she believes that staying active, whether it's working out at a gym or hiking outdoors, is a way of meditation that cultivates joy. Sarai hobbies are hiking, playing soccer, cycling and everything that has to do with nature.
 
Personal Trainer
Marlena Santiago
Marlena began her fitness career in Miami in 2007 as a group exercise instructor. After losing 90 lbs. participating in group fitness classes, she felt inspired to become an instructor and help others achieve their fitness goals. Marlena moved to the Coachella Valley in 2009, teaching at various health clubs and private communities. In 2012, she became a certified personal trainer. Marlena believes each person is unique and customizes each program to meet her client’s personal goals. Marlena has one daughter who served four years in the Marine Corps, now attending college pursuing a degree in Human Resources. She loves her cat Skittles and works hard to spoil him. Marlena holds National Accredited certifications by NCSF for personal training, AFAA for group exercise fitness and NASM Corrective Specialist, along with certifications in Power Plate, TRX, Silvers Sneakers Classic, Chair Yoga, Turbo Kick, Barre Above, Tabata & Kettlebells.
 
Yoga & Meditation Instructor
Leesann Shefa
Leesann was born and raised in Southern California among the orange, lemon and avocado groves. She moved to Northern California for her undergraduate studies, and then to Boulder, Colorado for graduate work. Leesann’s areas of study were theatre, dance and healing modalities. She has been teaching multiple forms of movement since 1978 and Yoga since 2011. Leesann feels honored to teach the following forms of Hatha Yoga: The Ghosh Lineage (the original "Hot Yoga"), Yin Yoga, Restorative Yoga, Yoga Nidra and Meditation. Her passion for teaching and practicing yoga is continually inspired by the healing benefits it offers. She loves sharing this journey with others and witnessing their transformation. Among her hobbies are dancing, hiking, and the textile arts of knitting and quilting.
 
Personal Trainer
Kerri Shingledecker
Kerri has been a fitness professional for 25 years. She started as a group fitness instructor teaching step consequently transitioning to personal training. Kerri specializes in one-on-one personal training, program design, continuing rehabilitation, nutritional coaching and weight management. She also specializes in functional movement and holds various National Accredited Certifications including ISSA (International Sports Science Association) Certified Personal Trainer and ISSA (International Sports Science Association) Certified Nutritional Coach. She is a proud mother of five sons and enjoys participating in outdoor fitness events. She completed her first mini triathlon in 2017 and is currently training to hike Mount Whitney this coming year. Kerri’s philosophy is that if you don’t try, you will never know the vast possibilities life can bring; each day brings a new beginning and with gratitude all is achievable.
 
Personal Trainer
Brittany Wall
Brittany is a Richmond County native now living in the Coachella Valley. After competing in her first bodybuilding show, Brittany decided to make Fitness and Wellness a career path. She is ISSA Certified Personal Trainer, Nutrition and a Lifestyle coach. Brittany can work with individuals of all ages and all fitness levels. From post rehabilitation and strength to muscle building and weight loss as well as meal planning, Brittany has over seven years of experience and thrives in motivating and inspiring her clients achieve their personal fitness goals. She looks forward to sharing her knowledge and expertise.