Dustin Ponder

RVC Owner / CrossFit Level 2

CrossFit Olympic Lifting
CrossFit Judges Course
3 hour Kettlebell seminar with Jeff Martone
AFAA Personal Training Cert 2007
Est CrossFit 2009

Dustin has been involved in sports his whole life. Sports is what got him through small town living in Southeast Arkansas. He joined the military when he was 18. While serving multiple tours in Afghanistan, Dustin was constantly asked to help others in the gym. His love for training and helping people was born. In 2007 Dustin started personal training for a large globo gym, where his managers noticed and commended him on having a real way of reaching people and helping them reach their fitness goals. In 2009, his wife introduced him to a new workout, which was a simple workout in theory but the series of wall balls, situps and burpees left him lying on the floor wondering what just happened. “I was in great shape…well I thought, but I was destroyed after just 10 mins” Dustin says. He and his family moved to Arkansas in 2011 and started their journey in opening a CrossFit box. Dustin has a goal to change the River Valley by creating a community that prioritizes health and fitness. Dustin is the first to come meet you and make you feel welcomed at River Valley CrossFit.

Rachel Ponder

RVC Owner / Crossfit Level 1

CrossFit Judges Course

ACE Certified Personal Trainer since 2006
ON/ABB sponsored athlete
CPR Certified
Est CrossFitter 2009

Rachel grew up in upstate New York and kept busy by participating in a sport for every season. When she graduated high school, she joined the Air Force where she found herself in unfamiliar territory, as her first assignment was in Ramstein Air Base in Germany. It was there that she developed a love for weight training. After months of lifting in the weight room that was predominantly filled with men, women began to approach Rachel asking her for fitness tips. Rachel loved the feeling she received when educating women that they can lift heavy weight, eat properly and not have to worry about getting ‘bulky’. The apprehension she often received from women about lifting more than 10lb Dumbbells motivated Rachel to become a personal trainer so that she can educate more people, especially women. Rachel became an ACE certified trainer for a major globo gym, and worked her way up to the Fitness Director. She was introduced to CrossFit by one of her personal trainer friends and decided to give one of their benchmark workouts a try. She was hooked from the very first WOD and never turned back!

“I love the feeling of empowerment that overcomes you when you hit a personal best on a complex lift, or when you complete a really tough WOD! And I love seeing people feel that same sense of empowerment! The members at RVC really celebrate each other’s victories, which is so awesome! Whether you PR a lift, a benchmark or fit into your skinny jeans again, the people at this gym are genuinely happy for you and celebrate it like it was their own! I love this group of people!”

Roy Burton

CrossFit Level 1

Roy has been in sports and fitness his whole life. Sports is what you did growing up in the small town of Charleston, AR. Through sports, fitness became a part of life. He has always been a member of a regular gym since high school and college. A friend talked him into trying crossfit at RVC in September of 2013. After his first workout, he was hooked. Then he talked his wife Rachel into joining. It’s something they love to do together. He became a Crossfit Level 1 Trainer in December of 2017 and is excited to share his love and knowledge of CrossFit with everyone at RVC. Roy has a goal to help people make fitness a lifestyle and not just a habit or routine.

“Fitness is not about being better than someone. It’s about being better than you used to be!”

Rachel Burton

CrossFit Level 1

Rachel grew up in Fort Smith, AR. She has a degree in Early Childhood Education and a master’s in Educational Theory and Practice.  She currently teaches kindergarten in the Fort Smith School District and has mentored several new teachers and student teachers.

Rachel’s interest in fitness didn’t begin until her mid-twenties.  She began her fitness journey by going to a regular gym and hiring a personal trainer.  Soon after, Rachel met her husband, Roy, at the gym and started training with him.  After a few years of lifting/working out she grew bored of the gym and felt as though she was wasting her time.  In 2013 Rachel and her husband decided to give crossfit a try. After the first week she was hooked and has been training at RVC ever since. The camaraderie, the coaching, and programming were everything she wanted and more.  Rachel is excited to share her love of crossfit and to help others reach their fitness goals.

Sara Murray

CrossFit Level 1

Sara Murray joined the River Valley Crossfit family in September of 2014 and quickly fell in love with the sport and the community. She is originally from Dallas, TX and is currently a dance teacher at Alma High School as well as coach of the Alma Dance Team. Sara comes from a competitive dance background which easily transferred into crossfit competitions with her RVC family. She became a Crossfit Level 1 Trainer in September of 2017 and is very excited to work with her fellow coaches and athletes at RVC. Her goal is to not only help every member grow in their fitness journey but to also learn from them so she can become a better athlete and coach as well.

Jeremy Wilson

CrossFit Level 1

​I started this Crossfit journey almost 3 years ago when I was tired of doing the normal Globo Gym workouts after almost 20 years.  I was a Division 1 college athlete and dabbled in bodybuilding in my early twenties, so I know what it is like to be in shape on a higher level…at least I thought!  Crossfit has truly changed my life!  I am 40 and in the best shape of my life and I owe it all to Crossfit and the discipline of better eating habits.  Most of my life I have been a part of a team.  In addition to my years of playing sports in HS and College, I spent 12 years coaching on both levels.  So I know a little bit about a team and community atmosphere and that is exactly what is generated at RVC.  Everyone is sweating and fighting through the same workout together and cheering each other on whether you finish 1st or last it doesn’t matter.  As reflected by my daily job in helping the elderly receive Home Health services to better their quality of life, my great passion is to help others reach their goals. This is why I am honored to be able to coach at RVC and to empower others to achieve greater health and fitness just as I have through constantly varied, functional movements at high intensity.

Brittany Ibarra

CrossFit Level 1

Brittany joined RVC in January 2018 and has been doing Crossfit for almost three years now. Originally from Cranberry Township, Pennsylvania, she has been in Arkansas for four years and teaches Special Education in Van Buren. She has a Bachelor’s degree in Elementary and Special Education and is working on her Master’s in Educational Leadership.

Brittany has always enjoyed working out and played sports recreationally as a kid. She did kickboxing for several years during college before trying Crossfit. She loves the continuous challenge of the daily workouts and the atmosphere where everyone is pushing each other to be their best. She recently became a Crossfit Level 1 Trainer in June 2019. Brittany is excited to work with the members at RVC and help them reach their health and fitness goals!