Founder & Executive Director
The Founder of A PLUS, Tavio Hobson has served as the A PLUS Executive Director since 2009. He is responsible for managing the program coordinators and staff, maintaining and refining the A PLUS program model as well as expanding the program in order to fit the A PLUS mission. Tavio has a Bachelor of Arts degree in Political Science with a minor in Spanish. Born and raised in the inner city of Seattle, Tavio has never been a stranger to service. His mother has been in childcare for over 25 years, while his father received the prestigious Jefferson Community Service Award, recognizing his dedication to the youth of Seattle. Tavio has worked for several non-profit organizations including YES (Youth, Education, Sports) Foundation for seven years. In addition to directing A PLUS Youth Program he currently works for YouthCare, an organization that aims to end youth homelessness in Seattle, Washington. As the founder of A PLUS, Tavio aims to help provide the academic assistance, personal leadership development and athletic engagement to the youth of the greater Seattle area.
Catherine was formerly the Research, Grants, and Administrative Coordinator. She has been with A PLUS for two and a half years after starting as an intern. Throughout these last few years, Catherine has been involved in all of A PLUS’s special events, secured grant funding, and served as the Strategic Plan Coordinator. She is committed and passionate about the A PLUS mission of using sports as a vehicle to provide the educational resources and character development necessary for student-athletes to succeed in life. With Catherine’s Master’s in Public Administration and nonprofit experience, we believe she is the right fit for the Deputy Director Position. Originally from the Portland area, Catherine moved to Seattle in 2009 for college. Catherine has always worked in the nonprofit sector, starting her career working at Just Yell Fire as a co-founder and spokesperson of the organization.
Kelan Smith has served as the Finance Director for A PLUS since its inception in 2009. A Seattle native, Kelan graduated from Washington State University with a degree in Sport Management with a concentration in Business Administration. Kelan has held positions with the Seattle Seahawks and Seattle Sonics and has also worked overseas for the National Football League as a public relations manager.
Mentor Director – Volunteer
Over thirty years in the professional fitness industry as a General Manager, fitness and sales manager, Nick has a passion for empowering young men and women with the knowledge and wisdom to get fit and be healthy. He has worked with various local high schools to set up strength and conditioning programs, including O’Dea, Franklin, Garfield, St. Joseph’s, Seattle Prep, the Y.E.S. Foundation and Lakeside basketball programs. Nick has also worked with various other athletes from high schools from all over the area, some of which have played professional basketball. Nick has worked with youth at the Rotary Boys & Girls Club for over ten years mentoring, teaching and empowering. Nick helped instruct a computer technology group as a teacher Mentor which included over forty youth (ages 12 to 18), some of which now work for Boeing, Microsoft and various other technology companies around the country. Nick has spent most of his adult life helping others to learn the importance of being a good person, how to work hard and how to maximize one’s education, along with taking care of the body and mind.
Special Events/Marketing Coordinator
Jordan Wheeler is a 2010 graduate of Whitman College. Originally from Seattle, Jordan played four years of college basketball for Whitman. During the Spring of 2010, per graduate requirements, Jordan wrote his senior thesis highlighting issues of justice and real estate in cases of eminent domain in Seattle. He also served as a Politics tutor for Whitman’s Academic Resource Center. Professionally, Jordan has worked in both Seattle and New York, brokering commercial real estate transactions and has conducted market research for large-scale development projects. Beginning in July of 2010 I moved to Seoul, South Korea to teach English in a private academy. All that he experienced within the rich Korean culture validated a fulfilling and worthwhile relocation. Upon returning to the United States, he began working for A PLUS. A PLUS was a natural progression given his involvement in basketball and teaching youth in Korea. He embraces the opportunity to serve as Marketing Coordinator for A PLUS and his goals are to set a standard of marketing proficiency in the local non-profit sector. Jordan hopes to not only improve A PLUS creative components and branding, but to also highlight, via local and national media, A PLUS academic and athletic programs we offer our members. Through years of competing on the basketball floor, and adapting to new environments in New York and Seoul, Jordan hopes to bring a diverse perspective to A PLUS and looks forward to enhacing the academic, athletic, and leadership opportunities integral to youth development.
Aaron Earl White Jr. is a native of Seattle, WA. He played high school basketball at Franklin High School where he was a four year letterman. Aaron went on to play basketball at Mesa Community College, College of Eastern Utah and one year at Highline Community College. He is also in his third year coaching at Lakeside High School as assistant varsity basketball coach. At A PLUS, Aaron is involved in many ways. He works as the Transportation Director, a mentor in the Mentor Program, and as an assistant basketball coach for the 10th grade team.
General Manager, Girls Life Coach
Joy Hollingsworth comes to the A PLUS Youth program with a vibrant personality, big imagination and a readiness to help students follow their dreams. Before joining A PLUS, she spent three seasons as an assistant women’s basketball coach at Seattle University. She worked primarily with point and shooting guards and assisted with the team’s recruiting and scouting efforts. Prior to joining the Redhawk coaching staff, she was an assistant coach at her alma mater, Seattle Preparatory School, during the 2008-09 season. She helped guide the Panthers to an appearance at the 3A Washington State Tournament. In the fall of 2010, Hollingsworth was inducted into the Seattle Prep Athletic Hall of Fame. She was named the 2003 West Coast Conference Freshman of the Year and earned Honorable Mention Freshman All-American accolades. A published writer, Hollingsworth’s has written for ESPN Hoopgurlz, NCAA Champion Magazine, the WBCA magazine and is in the final stages of completing her first book, Post Game: Life After Basketball. Joy is a Seattle native and proud to live in the shadow of the Space Needle. Her life motto is Dream Big or Go Home.
Lee has been an A PLUS board member since the organization’s inception and this summer he co-chaired the Program and Organization subcommittee of our Strategic Plan Committee. He is committed and passionate about the A PLUS mission of using basketball as a vehicle to provide student-athletes the educational resources and character development necessary to be successful in life. With Lee’s 20 years of experience in the Seattle Public School District (most recently the past 3 years at Franklin High School) as an Intervention Specialist and his 24 years of coaching, we believe that he is the right fit to carry out the A PLUS mission as Program Director.
Chris and his family relocated to Seattle in the summer of 2012 from the Bayou State of Louisiana. He has obtained a Bachelor of Theology degree and a Bachelor of Liberal Studies in Communications degree with a minor in Psychology. Chris has spent his entire working career with various non-profits as a coach, counselor, teacher and pastor. For the past 8 years, Chris has served as the Senior Director of Refuge, a youth development center in Alexandria, Louisiana. He has worked with groups and leaders across the country, as well as internationally, traveling to Australia, Philippines, and Guatemala equipping leaders and empowering students to pursue their dreams. In July of 2011, Chris opened Spoons Frozen Yogurt, a business dedicated to giving back. In just one year the business has partnered with local schools, charities, and other organizations in an effort to fund dreams and equip dreamers. As a passionate dreamer, he is devoted to executing the mission of A Plus by facilitating the dreams of today’s youth through academics, preparation, leadership, unity, and sports.
Zac is in his 2nd year with the A PLUS Youth Program. He comes to the city from Bainbridge Island, WA where he played basketball and football in Seattle’s Metro League for Bainbridge High. Post high school, Zac took time to travel and pursue coaching opportunities while developing a passion for working with youth. Along the way he served as Director of the Josh Childress Basketball Camp, counselor at the All-Star Basketball Camp in Switzerland and as a player assistant at NBA Madness in Hong Kong. Before coming to A PLUS, Zac served as a varsity assistant and JV/C team coach at Bainbridge High for 3 years. He also served as a para educator in the Bainbridge Island School District at a transition program for students with disabilities. In addition to working at A PLUS, Zac also holds post at The Northwest School in Seattle. He works at the school’s International Summer Camp as a HS Intern Coordinator and Residential Advisor, servicing students from over all over the world. Zac is committed to the A PLUS mission and relishes the opportunity to help a wide range of youth tap into their potential and reach their goals on the court and in life.
Josh comes to us with over 20 years experience as a coach, trainer and mentor. Josh began coaching for a youth rec league in Renton. He then moved up to the high-school ranks, coaching at four Seattle area high-schools. Most recently Josh was Associate Head Coach at West Seattle HS. Josh has coached 3 teams to the WIAA State tourney. Josh has also coached elite level AAU basketball with the Kent Kingz and the YES Foundation. Josh also excels as a skills specialist working with Watts Basketball and having formed his own training business MBS. Josh uses his experience and passion for basketball and life to help assist his players reach their athletic and lifes goals. Josh is a graduate of Highline Community College earning an AA degree in Business Management.
Life Coach (Bio coming soon)
Mitch Johnson grew up in Seattle, WA where he was a decorated basketball player at O’Dea High School. There, he was a four-year letter winner, a three-time captain, and two-time state champion. Mitch went on to play at Stanford University for four years and then played professionally in Eastern Europe for three years. This is his first year at A PLUS. He is excited to build the high school program and help prepare the student-athletes for college.
Life Coach (Bio coming soon)