You might think that the robot is everything to Raider Robotix, but nothing could be further from the truth. The robot is nothing but bits of metal, plastic and silicon; it’s simply the tool that enables the team to develop and practice essential skills that they’ll use for the rest of their lives. To help that happen, Raider Robotix relies heavily on a dedicated group of coaches, mentors, alumni and parents.
Below we introduce some of these people and their roles. We’ve got another page where you can discover how team parents organize to support us.
[Head Coach] Wayne Cokeley goes above and beyond for the team every single day – and many nights and weekends. Mr. Cokeley is the go-to guy that makes it all happen. Read the Woodie Flowers Award Entry written about Mr. Cokeley in 2006.
[Assistant Coach] Robert Goldman began working with Raider Robotix in 2006. Mr. Goldman heavily involves himself in setting up media and fundraising opportunities for the team. For example, the Strong Man Contests we have held in recent years were successful thanks to Mr. Goldman. He also helps organize other fundraising events, such as basketball games. We thank him for his continuing support and assistance to the members of Team 25.
[Volunteer Coach] Roger Weiss serves as a mentor to the members of Team 25. With a masters degree and intense passion in mechanical engineering from Stevens Institute of Technology, he spreads his in-depth knowledge to aspiring engineers of Raider Robotix. Mr. Weiss also coaches the four FTC teams affiliated with Team 25. He makes sure that freshman and newcomers to the program are easily transitioned into the realm of FIRST allowing them to compete in FTC. Weiss also helps out with the NJ FTC program by volunteering at the events. He makes sure that our team continues to grow by keeping students interested in the program. Mr. Weiss also teaches a freshman engineering class and a class called The Infinity Project, showing students the concepts and dynamics of engineering. We thank Mr. Weiss for his continuing support and contributions to the team.
[Engineer] Mike Lubniewski, from Bristol-Myers Squibb, mentors the team in all things mechanical. Incredibly dedicated to the team, Mike focuses his creativity, talent, enthusiasm and quick smile on helping us design and create our award-winning robots – year after year. Read what team members wrote about Mike in 2010. “I just like being part of it all – it keeps me young,” said Mike. We’re just fortunate to have him on our side.
Shaun McNulty was one of the first members of Team 25. Since 1998, he’s played a large role in developing a team from its infancy to a team that took on the Championship title in 2000 and 2012.
Shaun attends our meetings on a regular basis and primarily coaches and trains our drive team. His constructive criticism on and off the field is invaluable to the drive team in its objective to play the currently game in the best possible manner. We thank him for his coaching and continuing support.
Bharat Nain has been an integral part of Raider Robotix since 2003, first as a team member and now as a mentor. Bharat involves himself in every aspect of the team – from the engineering of the robot, to the programming, as well as working actively with the web design team. Due to his large amount of experience, he is a vital mentor to our team – helping us analyze each task at hand and move forward in an appropriate way.
In addition to his role on the team, Bharat frequently helps out our team members make decisions outside of the robotix world. Having only graduated in 2006, he aids current seniors to make decisions concerning courses to pursue in college as well as underclassmen making appropriate course selections to reach their goals. We thank him for his continuing support and invaluable contribution.
Kristian Calhoun was a student on Team 25 for all 4 years of his high school career, starting in the 2005 off-season. During this time, Kristian was a programmer and a member of the Drive Team. After graduating in 2009, he went on to study Computer Science at Drexel University and served as a college mentor to Raider Robotix.
During the build season and at competitions, Kristian can be found helping out the programmers, assisting the Awards committee, giving the Drive Team a leg up with strategy, and aiding the Scouting team’s efforts. At off-season events, he uses his experience to fill in as the drive coach in Shaun’s absence.
Rick Plavnicky began working with the Team 25 shortly after his son joined in 2008. For
techie parents, it can be that addictive! Rick quickly settled into a mentoring role, working with the coaches and students on engineering, programming, and shop tasks.Early on, he transitioned the team’s website from a series of pages to the cohesive whole you see today. Throughout his son’s high school career Rick traveled extensively with the team.
Since relocating to Florida in late 2012 Rick continues to help Team 25 from afar, mostly by providing technical support to RRPMA and the website team.