Coaches and Leadership

Coaching Staff

Scott Delaney

Scott Delaney
Head Coach

Scott Delaney is a collaborative coach invested in player and coach development. Scott was the video analyst for the US Women’s National team during the 2006 World Cup. He has had success as the head coach of multiple clubs with sides playing in different divisions, including Mid-Atlantic All Stars (MARFU and MARFU Developmental women), NOVA (D1 and D2 women), and Western Suburbs (D2 and D3 men).  Prior to stepping in at the helm of the DC Furies, Scott was the Director of Player Development for NOVA Women. This is Scott’s second stint with the DC Furies, having led the team in 2004 to what is still tied for the club’s best finish.

He coaches alongside former WPL Player of the Year, Joanna Bader; longtime men’s Premier League player, Mike McMillon; 23-year veteran Squirrel Birashk, lifelong Fury, Candace Gingrich, and longtime Fury, Kate Brown. Captains and coaches collaborate with a strong executive board to create a player-centric environment and provide the most opportunities to play rugby for members of the club.  #60AsOne.

Joanna Bader
WPL Forwards Coach

Joanna Bader has been involved with the Furies for 20 years and serves as the WPL forwards coach. After retiring from her 19-year career in the fall of 2014, she began her coaching career with us as head coach. Joanna joined the Furies in 1995 as a rookie to the team and brand new to rugby. She started out as a prop, but ultimately spent the majority of her rugby career at lock. In addition to serving as both treasurer and Ruggerfest Chair, she was Furies captain in both 2007 and 2011, and Furies president from 2005-2006. She played with MARFU All-Stars for several years and was RUGBYMag Women’s Club 15s Player of the Year in 2013. In 2016, Joanna was inducted as a Lifetime Fury for her contributions to the team on and off the pitch.

sherwinSherwin “Squirrel” Birashk
Division 2 Head Coach, 7s Head Coach

Squirrel’s rugby journey started 25 years ago as a West End U19s player, followed by a captaincy at the collegiate level with George Mason University and men’s club success in both 15s and 7s with NOVA. In 2012, Squirrel took over coaching duties at GMU Women’s rugby. By 2014, he had led them to their first playoff appearance in club history and a third place finish in the Capital Conference. He specializes in player development, leadership and team growth and still plays a match “here and there”. Squirrel led the Furies D2 squad to their first playoff debut in his first season as head coach and has also completed a 300-level coaching certificate with USA Rugby.

head shot nola

Candace Gingrich
Division 2 Assistant Coach

Candace fell in love with rugby while a student at Indiana University of Pennsylvania in 1987. Upon graduation she moved back to the Harrisburg area and as player/coach, formed Central PA’s first women’s rugby team, Capital Area Women (now known as Harrisburg Women), and briefly played with the Maulie Maguires of Northeastern PA. Upon moving to Washington, DC, Candace fortuitously found and joined the Washington Furies and began playing in spring of 1996 and has been Proud to Be A Fury ever since. Candace has toured with the Furies to France, Ireland, South Africa, Argentina and England. In 2011, Candace was voted by her peers to become a Lifetime Fury in recognition of her contributions to the team on and off the field. She received her referee certification in 2008 and is always happy to share her love for and knowledge of the laws with anyone willing to listen. Candace briefly served as the D2 assistant coach in the spring of 2014 and returned as D2 coach in 2015-2016.

Kate Brown
Division 2 Assistant Coach

Kate joined the furies in 2015 after moving to DC from her native England. Having grown up watching rugby, including watching her dad and brother, Kate followed in their footsteps and played lock or number 8 for multiple clubs throughout her 15-year career. Her passion for the game and the development of women in the sport has driven her to stay connected to the team even during times of injury. She gained her coaching and refereeing certificates in the fall of 2016 during time off from playing due to a hand injury,. But she;s not fully retired yet—she plans to continue to play after the birth of her first child due this December. Kate has been on the organizing committee for Ruggerfest for the past two years and is currently team secretary and the D2 fourth official.

Headshot 1Michael McMillon
Backs Coach

Michael McMillon started playing rugby with the University of Missouri-Columbia in the 2006/07 season. Mike played at Mizzou for three years before moving back to St. Louis and playing with the mighty St. Louis Bombers. He was fortunate enough to be coached by former U.S. Eagles John McBride and Ron Laszewski as well as Bomber Greats Ben Meyers and Aaron Spencer. Mike played competitively with the Bombers until 2015, including time as a Captain (2011/12), Recruitment Director (2011-2013), and experienced several Western Conference Championships, and appearances in the Sweet 16 and Elite 8. An injury put a damper on Mike’s competitive playing for a few years after 2015 where his focus shifted to developing as a coach first and continuing to play rugby socially. Mike has coached the University of Missouri-Columbia’s Women’s Team, developed and served as Head Coach for both the Men’s and Women’s Clubs at Lord Fairfax Community College and is excited about coaching the Furies. Mike is a Level 200 Coach with a Bachelor of Social Work from Mizzou and currently working on a Master’s Degree in Sports Management.


WPL Captain – Maggie Olney
WPL Co-captain – Michelle Vanderploeg
D2 Captain – Brooke Branson
D2 Co-captain – Briley Acker
President – Kristen Maxey
Match Secretary – Jennifer Konish
Vice President of Recruitment – Leni Dworkis
7s Coordinator – Sharifa Love
Vice President of Public Relations – Amirah Al Idrus
Ruggerfest Chairs (2018) – Leni Dworkis and Alex Hart
Executive Secretary – Judy Dickson
Treasurer – Mikey Onwochei
Fundraising Chair – Jen Putnam
Vice President of Operations – Brooke Branson
Social Chair – Mickey Van Dijk
Capital Geographic Union Representative – Brooke Branson
WPL Manager – Kristen Maxey
Alumni Network Coordinator – Dre Khoury