Next Level Tennis & Education's Tennis Staff
District of Columbia & Virginia
PETER TOWNES, FOUNDER & EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR
“At 14 years old, I decided to play tennis. Like much of my young life, if I put my mind to a thing, I accomplished it. It wasn’t from my mother’s investment, or my father’s encouragement that I was driven to the courts of D.C. It was because my father left behind a racket, some tennis balls, and the will of an athlete. Arthur Ashe inspired me from the television when he defeated Jimmy Connors in Wimbledon. I looked at him and realized that he was doing something that I could do, so I did it!”
Four years later he attended South Carolina State University on a full tennis scholarship and earned a Bachelor of Art in English with a minor in Journalism. He then went on to coach student-athletes who became productive citizens: doctors, lawyers, teachers, and businessmen/women. To his credit, two of the Founder’s adult children obtained Division 1 tennis scholarships, and one earned the National Merit Award, then walked on to her Division 1 Tennis team and became team captain for three years. His eldest son maintains the title of Head Mens & Womens Tennis Coach at a Division 1 university.
Sibi Soumahoro came to us last year from the Ivory Coast, Africa. After a year on staff Sibi has become an invaluable member of the program and has been promoted to Director of Junior Development. He inspires our juniors with his work ethic, energy and contagious smile!In his country, Sibi was a top 3 nationally ranked junior.When he’s not on court helping our students get better, he’s in the gym or on court sharpening his game for the Future’s and Challenger’s Circuits.
Director of Junior Development, Atlanta
GABRIEL TOWNES, DIRECTOR OF JUNIOR DEVELOPMENT
Youngest son of NLTE’s founder, Peter. Gabriel earned a full scholarship to Ga State University and Bradley University’s. Before his collegiate experiences, he was a 3 time National Champion and a 4 time National Champion runner up. He grew up on the courts where he won over 50 sectional and regional championships. At 16 years of age he wrote, published and negotiated his own book deal about a fictional super hero. At 17 years he completed on the Futures Circuit for 2 months with a 9-9 record. He wasn’t able to land a professional contract and attended college for 2 years. He’s not competing anymore but still has a love for the game and shares it with our students in Atlanta part time, when he’s not making music. He’s a hip hop artist and goes by, EL’
Director of Junior Development, Baltimore
MATTHEW TOWNES, DIRECTOR OF JUNIOR DEVELOPMENT
Matthew has extensive junior playing experience in both the Mid-Atlantic and Southern Sections of the USTA. Earning a scholarship to play Division 1 tennis at Morgan State, Matthew went on to become captain of the Men’s team from his Sophomore year until the time of his matriculation in 2008. After college, Matthew played a few Men’s tournaments, but focused primarily on junior coaching/development. Between 2008 and 2014, Matthew developed 8 National Champions, and a total of 17 players receiving Division 1 Collegiate scholarships; including Notre Dame, Duke, and Stanford. During this same time, Matthew developed and executed successful junior tennis programs at 2 tennis clubs in Maryland.
The collegiate realm of tennis has stayed a part of Matthew’s life. Immediately following collegiate tennis, he became the Assistant Men’s Coach of his Alma Mater, 09-11. Following his time at Morgan, Matthew moved on to a different opportunity, and became the Assistant Men’s Coach at Johns Hopkins University. During his year with the Blue Jay’s, he was able to help the team reach the 2012 Elite 8 of the NCAA Tournament. After his time with Hopkins, Matthew focused more time on junior tennis, until the right opportunity to be a head coach presented itself. In December 2014, that opportunity came, and Matthew became the Head Coach at Morgan State. In less than 4 years time, Matthew has won a MEAC Championship and Coach of the Year honors. His teams have finished in the top 3 of the MEAC Conference each of the last 3 years, and are only getting stronger.