Ilia Ash joined the LMU rowing coaching staff in 2008 after several seasons at the University of Washington. Her primary duties with the Lions will be on- and off-campus recruitment and coaching the novice teams.
Ash began her rowing career during her senior year of high school at Everett Rowing Association in Everett, WA. Ash attended Everett Community College, where she started the first community college rowing program in Washington State and just the second on the West Coast. As co-founder and captain for two years, Ash led the EvCC Rowing team to Club of the Year honors twice while personally receiving the Distinguished Student Service Award for her work to better student life and diversity.
In 2000, Ash transferred to the University of Washington, where she was a member of the women's varsity rowing team. Ash competed in the junior varsity four and was a member of the Husky teams that won three Pac-10 and two national titles. After graduating from the University of Washington in 2003 with a B.S. in Conservation of Wildland Resources she began coaching junior women at Sammamish Rowing Association in Seattle, WA. During this time, the third varsity boat raced in Junior Varsity events and placed third at the West Coast Junior Regional Championships.
After a successful season at Sammamish, she returned to the University of Washington in 2004 as a coach. During her first two seasons as the Women's Novice Intern Coach, Ash helped the Novice Women win the 2005 Pac-10 Championship. The following year, the 3rd Novice Boat beat the fourth varsity boat at the Windermere Cup/Opening Day Regatta in Seattle, WA. As an intern, she was responsible for the core training for both the men's freshman and women's novice teams. Following a year away from collegiate athletics as a pilates instructor, Ash returned again to the University of Washington during the 2007-2008 rowing season, serving as the men's varsity core coach and helping the Huskies to the 2008 National Championship.
As a certified Authentic Pilates instructor, Ash has trained Rika Geyser of the South Africa Women's Rowing team at the Beijing Olympics, members of the Seattle Mariners organization, and members of the US National Rowing team.
Ash completed her Master's degree in Sports Administration and Leadership from Seattle University in 2008.