Lana Walgamotte

CLUB MANAGER, Military Rd.

Lana Walgamotte started with Cross Gates Family Fitness in December of 2002, just days after graduating with a Bachelor of Science degree in Management from Southeastern Louisiana University. Lana started at the Military Road facility as a shift leader then quickly moved her way up to Front Desk manager for our Pontchartrain Drive location within her first year. Lana has been here through having to relocate back to the Military Road facility due to Hurricane Katrina, the rebuilding of our Pontchartrain club, acquiring a third location, and many, many other company changes that have happened throughout her career. You will usually find her somewhere around the club making things happen to assist a member or looking for ways to make the club even better. Lana is married to Kelly Walgamotte and has 3 handsome, very active boys who participate in both Hurricanes Swim Club and the CG|Tennis program.

Alex Knudsen

CLUB MANAGER, Military Rd. Club

Alex is from Dallas, TX but relocated to Mandeville, LA in 2000. At Louisiana State University, he pursued a degree in Sports Administration with minors in Business Administration and Communications. Following graduation, he spent five seasons in Minor League Baseball where he worked as Director of Finance and Gameday Operations. In his free time you’ll find him watching sports, playing golf, and spending time with family and friends. He’s excited to bring his skills and experience to the fitness industry to create life changing experiences and memories.

Tammy Phillips


Tammy Phillips joined the Cross Gates Team in 2000 as our Childcare Manager.  In 2016 she moved to the Gause Blvd management team as Club Manager while continuing to manage our children's programs. As the General Manager of the Gause Blvd location she uses her knowledge and experience that she has gained as a manager and as a certified personal trainer to support and encourage everyone in their fitness and wellness undertakings. She wants everyone to feel welcome at Cross Gates Family Fitness and looks forward to meeting new people and helping them with their journey.

Nathan Guste

GENERAL MANAGER, Pontchartrain Dr. Location

Nathan has over 10 years experience in the Health and Wellness Industry. He is a graduate of the University of New Orleans with a focus on Health Promotion and Business. As a former coach in our MyClub fitness department, Nathan has come back full circle ready to put his expertise to use! In the role of General Manager he will use his experience and knowledge to help everyone who steps foot into the club reach their full potential. As an advocate for community outreach, Nathan loves to meet new people and get them excited about their health and wellness. Nathan is a sports nut and enjoys spending his free time with his family and friends, coaching his son’s sports teams and being a dance dad to his daughter.

Larry and Merryanne Welch

Club Owners

Since purchasing the club in 1997, Larry and Merryanne have lived and worked in the Slidell Community. After meeting at Elmwood Fitness in New Orleans and discovering their joint passion for the Fitness Industry, they moved to the Northshore and purchased Cross Gates Athletic Club.  Since then, we have seen the club grow and evolve into Cross Gates Family Fitness and have helped people just like you live fit, live better.  Together, they are active in the day to day operations of all of our clubs and raising their 3 children.

Nate Welch

Vice President of Operations

Nate has 10+ years of experience in multiple areas of the fitness industry. He is degreed in Finance from Louisiana Tech University but his sales acumen is what got him started in the fitness industry. He started as a Membership Representative and with his success in sales, he took on the Director of Business Development role and eventually became Vice President of Operations. He oversees all management teams and operations at all 3 locations . As a coach, he enjoys teaching fitness industry seminars and the latest trends. He is also a bit of data geek (yes, nerd alert!). He is a Level 1 Certified Functional Strength Coach and an avid promoter of functional exercise for the general population.

Greg Johnson

Program Director

Greg has a Master’s Degree in English with a Concentration in Professional and Technical writing.  As Program Director, he works with all of the departments to create and manage world class offerings in health, nutritional and recreation for CG Members. Greg is also a group fitness instructor at the club. He coaches Body Pump, Spinning, Yoga and Group Training programs.  As the marketing director for Cross Gates Family fitness, he is responsible for creating all internal and external marketing and communication for the club.  Greg started working with Cross Gates Family Fitness in 1997. His career began in the Youth Activity Center where he has developed many children’s programs including Slidell’s finest Summer Camp and is still actively involved in managing the club’s youth programs.

Zach Landry

Fitness Director

After spending time managing fitness programs in Florida, including Don Schula’s gym, Zach returned back to his home state of Louisiana.   His love of fitness started when he was in 8th grade and he knew he wanted to help people become better versions of themselves through coaching. He has a wide array of knowledge and perspectives from his education in kinesiology from Southeastern Louisiana University and his diverse experience working in Athletic Training, Physical Therapy, Education and Personal Training.  As a personal trainer, Zach is able to help his clients find a program that works for them and is able to hold them accountable to their workouts and nutrition to help them get results.

Theresa Stein

Group Exercise Manager

Born in Baton Rouge, Theresa lived in Northern Virginia, Manchester-by-the-Sea, Massachusetts, and most areas of Louisiana before settling in Slidell in 1999. Theresa graduated from the University of Miami with a double major in Mass Communication and Psychology with a minor in Sociology. She began taking group fitness classes at Cross Gates in 2004 and soon decided to become a fitness instructor herself. Theresa worked in television production for several years, primarily at WDSU, then  as a part-time office administration/payroll specialist while she taught fitness classes at Cross Gates. She became the Group Exercise Manager in July 2018, continuing her transition from her school/work background to fitness. She loves people and she loves exercise and she truly enjoys combining them; her enthusiasm for group exercise classes is contagious. In addition to her management responsibilities, Theresa teaches Bodypump, Bodyattack, and CXWorx and you can usually find her in the Da Groove classes, too.

Darlene Ting

Aquatics Manager

 Darlene is the perfect combination for CG, she is a retired school teacher with over 20 years in the classroom, and a fitness enthusiast as a swim lesson and group exercise instructor and our Body Motion coordinator. Darlene is sure to make the Aquatics program a place all the kids want to be!

Johnny Wahlborg

Tennis Director

Johnny brings with him 27 years of tennis experience in Baton Rouge and throughout Louisiana. He was a founder of the 20-court Lamar Tennis Center and has developed junior players of all ages and levels, including more than 40 who went on to play at the collegiate level. As Director of Junior Tennis, he develops a  juniors program with clinics, recreational teams, competitive teams, camps and works with local schools and organizations to provide greater access to the sport. Additionally, Johnny uses his experience to help manage leagues, clinics, lessons and special events for adults. Johnny believes “tennis is a lifetime sport that is a gift to learn when you’re young because you can keep playing forever.” He looks forward to hearing from members and working with the community.

Terri Lamparez

Head Pickleball Professional

Terri played softball, volleyball and tennis before finding pickleball in 2009 right here at Cross Gates. Since then she has become a 4.5 USAPA rated tournament player and is one of the top 50 women's players in the MidSouth Region.  She is certified by the International Pickleball Teaching Professionals Association (IPTPA), Terri offers private lessons and clinics to players of all skills who are looking to improve their game.  



Dane Pedersen

Sports Performance Manager

Helping athletes maximize their physical potential and becoming the best they can be has been Dane’s passion since he was introduced to sports performance. After graduating in kinesiology from Louisiana College in 2020, where he played baseball, Dane interned at Mcneese State University working with their Strength and Conditioning Staff. As a certified strength & conditioning coach, Dane is able to program specifically for the athlete’s needs in order for them to improve in their sport. Along with improving strength and speed, teaching athletes life lessons as well as installing a hard work ethic is his goal.



Darla Mirelz

Spa & Lifestyle Store Director

Jodie Graham

Business Office Manager

Courtney D’Amelio

YAC Manager, Military Rd.

Courtney has been with Cross Gates Family Fitness since January of 2011. She started out as a Helping Hands teacher with the 2-year old and 3-year old classes, worked as a Summer Camp Counselor for Cub Camp and in July of 2013 was promoted to Youth Activity Center Assistant Manager . In May of 2014 , she was promoted to full time Childcare Manager and was more then happy to take on the job. Children of all ages are her passion and she loves that she can offer them a place to go that is fun, safe and secure.

Katie Roberts

YAC Manager, Gause Blvd.

Bio coming soon . . .

Jordanna Martello

YAC Manager, Pontchartrain Dr.

Bio coming soon . . .


Sarah Blackwell

Front Desk Manager, Gause Blvd.

Sarah moved to Slidell for her husband's job in January 2021 after living in the Charleston, SC area for most of her life.  She studied Psychology at Charleston Southern University and has always held positions in Customer Service, Sales and Management.  While looking for a new career after the move here, she found Cross Gates Family Fitness.  Sarah and her family had already become members of the Military Rd. location and knew that CG was a place where she could utilize her customer service background to the fullest, have a work "family" and feel like a part of something in her community.  She loves that she found this becoming part of Cross Gates!  Outside of the club, she loves spending time with her husband, Luke, and their 2 children, Eliza and William, and their dogs.  As a family they enjoy being outside whether it's walking, bike rides, working their yard or just playing with the kids!

Nick Caywood

Front Desk Manager, Pontchartrain Dr.

Nick has been part of the Cross Gates team since it opened at the Gause location in 2014.  He's worked from overnight attendant, to front desk shift leader, to becoming the Front Desk Manager at the Pontchartrain Dr. location. He enjoys working at Cross Gates because it feels like family. Speaking of family, Nick is the guy you want to become friends with and it's not because of his friendly personality. He and his family own a bakery in Chalmette selling king cakes during Mardi Gras. During Carnival Season, he is working all through the night making king cakes and still works full time at Cross Gates. King Cakes aren't his only passion; working out is also a passion for him. During his off time he works out by himself and even with his co workers from time to time.