Team Zoar: Meet The Staff

Team Z is a small group of dedicated kayakers who compete in freestyle competitions and extreme races around the U.S. It started with a few friends who have worked and paddled at Zoar Outdoor for several years now.

Jim Sullivan: Team Z Manager

Paddling since he was twelve thanks to his father, Jim is one of the best paddlers around. With a smooth and consistent style Jim gets it done on the water and on the slopes in Big Sky. Having taught for Zoar and Liquid Skills his instruction is world class and boats to match it. In the North East he was so dominant at the annual Deerfield rodeo organizers had to change the rules to beat him.

Sponsors: Zoar Outdoor




Longmeadow, MA

Who inspired you most while getting into kayaking?

My friends were my inspiration when I began paddling. We all worked and lived at camp together and pushed each other to learn new skills and develop our tricks.

What was your best moment on a river?

I’ve had many memorable moments on many rivers, hard to say a best one. Some include winning the Deerfield rodeo, paddling in Chile, doing my first self-support trip with great friends in northern Quebec, and running big drops in New York.

What is your dream paddling destination?

I think the next dream I want to make come true is heli-boating in New Zealand, or paddling in Costa Rica

How do feel about being involved with Team Zoar?

It’s fantastic. We’ll travel to events and promote Zoar. I’m also real excited to work with some of the young kids around here and develop their potential. It’s also a great way for some of the students I’ve taught to see what I’m up too.

What do you have planned for the coming season?

One of my big plans for the season is to create some videos for students to have that are specifically tailored to the clinics we offer at Zoar. Of course I’ll also be doing some local trips to some great paddling spots in the Northeast

Who are your sponsors? Zoar Outdoor, Jackson Kayak Regional Team

What does kayaking hold for you over other activities?

Kayaking is a lifelong pursuit.  It is ultimate freedom in a dynamic medium.

Elaine Campbell: Member of Team Z

What year did you start paddling?


What year did you start working at Zoar?


What is your favorite paddling memory?

Meeting my husband Jeff!

What is your favorite food or color or superhero or something you would like
to disclose?


What is something you like to do when you are not paddling?

Eat or sail

Why do you teach at Zoar?

I want to get more women involved in the sport of freestyle kayaking!

What kind of boats do you paddle and how many do you own?

Wave Sport X  Wave Sport Diesel

What other sports do you do?


How did you start paddling?

My brother Mark and I learned together. It was my 22nd birthday gift from him.


Wave Sport, Shred Ready, NRS


Tino Specht: Member of Team Z

Otherwise known as “Jr”, Tino is relentlessly devoting himself to the pursuit of big air and tricky moves.  He is one of the most talented paddlers to come out of the Academy after school kayaking program at Zoar Outdoor.  Tino spent the spring semester of 2007 as a student at Huge Experiences where he paddled extensively in Chile and up and down the East Coast of the US.  He then spent the next few years teaching filming and editing classes for Huge Experiences while traveling and paddling around the globe.  He recently has been involved in producing full length documentaries and is very active with his Nomade Unknown series of videos.

Watch more of Tino’s videos on Vimeo

Nomade Unknown Blogspot

Sponsors: Zoar Outdoor


Tino or Junior


Charlemont, MA

Who inspired you most while getting into kayaking?

I watched a short segment of some of the Young Guns crew surfing some huge waves and decided that that’s what I wanted to do.

What was your best moment on a river?

While I was in Chile I paddled the Futaleufu River. The entrance to Inferno Canyon on this river is unbelievable. It feels like you are passing through gates, it’s a really cool feeling. The other time was on the Fuy River in Chile. There is a thirty-foot waterfall that you can paddle behind. Behind that waterfall is I think the single coolest place I have ever been.

What was your worst moment on a river?

I can’t remember ever having a bad time on the river and if I have a bad moment it is always outweighed by the overwhelming amount of good moments that take place.

What is your dream paddling destination?

The Deerfield River, of course. I also really want to tour Quebec and search for some huge waves.

How do feel about being involved with Team Zoar?

I am proud and excited to be part of a group that is really excited about bringing new paddlers into the sport and having as much fun as possible. It’s a really cool idea to make a team that isn’t about boosting the egos of the people who are on it.

What does kayaking hold for you over other activities?

For starters I haven’t found a sport that is more fun than kayaking but something else that I love about the sport is the people. Everyone I have met so far are all super nice outgoing people and that just makes an incredibly fun atmosphere to be involved in. The last thing is that the sport of kayaking is progressing incredibly fast right now and I think it would be really cool to be part of making the history of a sport.

Katelyn Green: Member of Team Z

What year did you start paddling, and how did you start?

I started in the summer of 2011 when we took some sit-on-top kayaks down a class I section of the Hoosic River.  About a month later, we had our own kayaks and were paddling all the time.  My skills improved tenfold after I took nearly a dozen clinics with Zoar Outdoor last year.

Do you have a paddling nickname?


What is your favorite superhero?

Aquaman would make a good kayaker.

What other sports or hobbies do you enjoy?

When I’m not paddling you can find me on the mountain (skiing), at an ice rink (hockey), or taking pictures of something!

What will you try to accomplish while paddling with Team Z?

I really want to use my new position on Team Z to take my paddling skills to the next level, and also to introduce and inspire a lot of people to take up the sport.  I love the feeling you have when you get someone hooked into something new that you have a passion for yourself.

Who inspires you the most as a paddler and why?

Women who have become extremely successful in freestyle and other disciplines are my biggest inspiration. Elaine Campbell, Jessie Stone, and Emily Jackson have provided amazing advice and support for me whenever I see them on and off the river.

What is your favorite paddling memory?

Long Summer nights at the T-ville hole in CT.

Where would your next dream destination be?

I would like to travel to South America to paddle one day.  Rivers there are more secluded and you feel closer to nature.

Favorite river or place to paddle?

I love my local rivers; the Deerfield and the Farmington!