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The Board

About Us

Head Coach, Rebekah Alenduff, has been paddling competitively for nearly a decade. In 2015 she was selected to the Premier Women’s US National Dragonboat Team, coached by Hype Mattingly, where she competed in the 12th IDBF World Championships in Welland, Canada. At the event, the team won Team USA's first ever Gold Medal in the Premier Womens category. The Premier Women completed Worlds with the Gold Medal in the 2000m event, and three Silver Medals (1000m, 500m, 200m).

2015 is also the year Rebekah joined the Jax Fire Dragons JFD). She began assistant coaching in 2016 and helped coach (and paddle) the team to their best finish ever at the Orlando International Dragonboat festival. That year in Orlando, JFD's "Chix with Stix" finished 3rd overall in their category, and the Mixed team finished 4th overall in Division A. Also in 2016, the JFD Mixed team won the Jacksonville Dragonboat Festival overall in Division A.

Rebekah took over as head coach of JFD in 2019 and has worked to enhance the club by implementing training programs in outrigger canoes, dryland training during the off season, and periodizing training so the team peaks during the most competitive races of year.

Rebekah Alenduff was a collegiate rower at Barry University from 2006-2010, and was named rower of the year in 2010. Some notable finishes include 2nd in the Varsity 8 At Dad Vails, and 3rd in the Varsity 8 at the NCAA DII National Championships in 2010.

When not coaching paddle sports,
Rebekah works as an ACE Certified personal trainer, is a functional training specialist and owns her own fitness company.

gofitnessjax@gmail.com

Founder and  Coach Joe:
After racing for 5 years with the Miami Dragon Slayers, our Head Coach Joe Longobardi and his wife, Berni, a 6 year veteran paddler with the Miami based-Save Our Sisters DB Club, relocated to Jacksonville in 2010. After a few weeks devoid of any paddling, Joe and Berni began the quest to start dragon boating in North Florida. It took from October 2010 until May of 2012 to do it but the JAX Fire Dragons were born, boats and equipment were bought and history was made. Since the first launch of our boats, Joe has introduced the sport to more than 1,000 people, helped to send 5 paddlers to the US National team, and lead his club to a superb collections of medals in races in Florida, South Carolina, Alabama as well as a berth in the World Club Crew Championship in Italy in 2015. Under Joe's leadership, the JAX Fire Dragons have earned a reputation as friendly but ferocious competitors and a fun group to paddle and socialize with.

Joe is a semi-retired international banker with more than 40 years experience to include management positions with global banks in NY, Miami, Frankfurt, Manila, Amsterdam and London and currently is joint owner of a financial consultancy in West Palm Beach. He prides himself in being an avid paddler and athlete at the age of 72 as well as wearing the badge of a successful quadruple bypass surgery 14 years ago. Berni is a breast cancer survivor of 13 years and a retired paddler. Joe is a certified USBDF coach and is passionate about the sport of dragon boating. He is a fanatic about teaching technique first, introducing power later and most importantly avoiding injury.

Joe and Berni were both raised in Wildwood, New Jersey, went to high school together (prom king and queen), separate colleges, have been married for 51 years, have two children, Joe, a yacht broker in Annapolis, MD and Lindsay, a travel nurse recruiter in Jacksonville Beach and a former JFD paddler). He and Berni enjoy their 5 grandchildren, their 3 cats and their Chiwienie, Max.

Sponsor
Andy Fraden       Owner All Wet Sports
True waterman, enjoys
Windsurfing, Paddleboarding, Wakesurfing
among many other water sports,
and of course the Full Dragon Boat Experience!  He started and was President many times of "JAWS" Jacksonville Associated Wind Surfers from the early 80's till early 2000's
A certified Windsurfing Instructor now and an avid Stand Up Paddle Board Instructor. Dragon Boating bug was caught  in 2015 when then President AJ contacted him for a new location Sponsor. Soon as  the boats and the Crew arrived he knew it looked FUN!

Coming soon: our New President Mo Sian


Coming soon:  Linda our Treasure!

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