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Sari Friedman Lee and Rebecca Lederman, both PPR certified pickleball professionals, met years ago playing tennis and eventually played on the same team in a competitive women's league. Their love of sports was not limited to tennis, as they played on the same softball team as well. So, it came as no surprise when Rebecca's parents, winter residents in Florida, convinced them to try pickleball and they were immediately hooked. Fast forward a few years, countless hours playing and many tournaments later, Sari and Rebecca decided to turn their passion into something bigger...Pickleball Palace. Their first season started with one adult clinic and in less than a year, they were already teaching hundreds of adults and children to play the sport that changed their lives.


Sari is a competitive pickleball player competing in 5.0 and pro-level tournaments all around the country. A few of her most recent wins include gold medals in mixed doubles at the U.S. Open in Naples, Florida, in women's doubles at the APP New Jersey Open and in both women's and mixed doubles at the North Mid-Atlantic Regionals. She also has a silver medal and two bronze medals from women's doubles and singles at Nationals in Palm Springs, CA.  When not on the court playing or teaching pickleball, Sari can be found binging Netflix, reading nonfiction and playing puzzle games on her phone. She graduated with a BA from the University of Pennsylvania and a JD from New York University School of Law. After practicing corporate law in a big NYC firm, she moved to New Jersey and started teaching law to undergraduate students at Montclair State University, where she can still be found today (when not on the pickleball court). Sari lives in Livingston, New Jersey with her husband, two kids and two dogs.


Rebecca graduated from the University of Rochester with a BA in psychology where she played on the women’s tennis team winning two New York State doubles titles and was named a Scholar-Athlete All-American.  She then went to earn her MA in Organizational Psychology at Columbia University where she served as the assistant coach of the women’s tennis team.  After spending 15 years in Corporate Human Resources focused on employee satisfaction, she decided to refocus her energy on achieving life satisfaction. In addition to pickleball, she enjoys cultivating other future retirement hobbies which include tennis, canasta and mah jongg.  Rebecca lives in Livingston, New Jersey with her husband and three daughters, who also love to dink.  

sari and rebecca

Staff Bios


Anthony Handal

Anthony graduated from Montclair State University in 2019 with a BA in business administration. He started at Pickleball Palace in 2018 with an internship in sports marketing, but quickly realized his skills were well suited for teaching as well. He earned his PPR certification and loves training adult and junior players. Anthony has had a lot of success in both singles and doubles in tournament play.  If you're looking to learn the newest trick shots in pickleball, Anthony is your guy.


Loretta Swaneveld

Loretta is a life-long athlete, competing in everything from volleyball, softball and tennis to cycling full centuries and beating her husband, Tony, at badminton. Since 2015, she and Tony have been playing and competing all over the country Loretta was a gold medalist in Women's Doubles at the 2019 Pittsburgh Gamma Classic and the 2019 Connecticut Open, and in Mixed Doubles at the 2019 Nutmeg Games. Finding her love for teaching/coaching through Pickleball Palace and earning her IPTPA Level II professional teaching certification has only furthered her “let’s keep it competitive and fun” pickleball court sense. 


Scott Pringle

Scott is a lifelong competitive tennis player who tried out this funny sounding game called Pickleball years ago & has been hooked ever since. For anyone trying to understand his accent, it is probably best described as South African English & he has lived in 5 different countries – Zambia, Zimbabwe, South Africa, Australia & now here in the US. For that reason, he has participated in several other sports besides tennis such as cricket, rugby, & long distance running. Scott earned his IPTPA level II teaching certification when he decided that a bad day on the Pickleball court is better than a good day at the office!


Harold Simandl 

Harold recently retired after a long and successful career as an Information Technology professional for a large, multinational insurance company.  Harold played racquet sports since his youth and developed an instant passion after taking up pickleball a few years ago.  He is most appreciative of the new friendships he has made through his play and travels in the pickleball community. Harold is a PPR certified coach and loves helping new players progress and build their on-court confidence. When not playing and teaching in North Jersey, Harold can be found on the pickleball courts on Long Beach Island where he likes to spend his summer days.


Matt Robertson

Matt is a life-long athlete, competing in sports including baseball, basketball, volleyball and football.He graduated with a BS from the University of South Carolina and a MS from West Virginia University with a focus on Sports Management. Matt had spent most of his career in the corporate sports and entertainment world in NYC until he found his love for pickleball during the pandemic. Matt is a PPR certified coach and plays pickleball at a competitive level. He loves helping new players improve their skills and really enjoys seeing their progress and confidence that comes with it. Matt lives in Rutherford, New Jersey with his wife, son and dog. When not coaching pickleball or his son’s baseball or basketball teams, Matt can be found on the pickleball and volleyball courts in Lavallette where he likes to spend his summer days.


Carly Pfeffer

Carly is a lifelong athlete, playing softball and tennis competitively throughout her childhood. In 2018, Carly was introduced to the sport of pickleball, and she found her new passion. Playing two to three hours a day, every day, she developed her skill level and became an advocate for the sport. She enjoyed teaching the sport to others and in 2022, she joined the Palace and became PPR certified. Carly's competitive nature has resulted in her participating in local and national tournaments, where she has medaled in both Mixed and Women's Doubles. Most recently, Carly won a gold medal at the 2022 4.0 Womens' Doubles  at the NYC Open allowing her to earn a spot to compete at the nationals. She also earned a Gold medal at the 4.5 Mixed Doubles at the APP NJ Open. When not "pickling", Carly can be found with her husband Darren, her children Lily and Max, and puppy Ziggy watching the Rangers, Mets, Giants and Knicks!

Alex PP Website Photo.jpg

Alex Lee

Alex is a lifelong racquet sport player so his transition to pickleball was smooth. He is PPR certified and plays pickleball at a competitive level. He earned his BA from Washington University and his MBA from NYU Stern. When not teaching on the courts, Alex helps with the marketing and finance aspects of the business.


Debbie Gray

Debbie has been playing sports her entire life and she played tennis, softball and volleyball competitively. Actually, if it’s competitive, Debbie will play just about anything.  After decades of playing tennis, Debbie fell in love with Pickleball a few years ago and there was no turning back. She is a Certified IFP Instructor and loves working with players to help them build skills and to share her love of the game. When she’s not on the pickleball court, Debbie can be found playing with her grandkids, hiking, kayaking, paddleboarding, or reading. Debbie’s pickleball motto is “play hard and never forget it is supposed to be fun.”


Tony Swaneveld

Tony has been a competitive soccer player for over 40 years, starting at the age of 8 and playing through college and then club ball. He has coached soccer at all different levels, including the high school level, for 20 of those years. His other favorite sports include surfing, swimming, tennis, racquetball, badminton, volleyball, Ironman Triathlons and most importantly, pickleball. Tony earned his IPTPA Level II certification and plays competitively at the 4.5 level. He has medaled in countless tournaments, both in men's and mixed doubles. What Tony loves most is teaching “bangers to dink and dinkers to bang”.

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