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Meet the Executive Team & Staff

The Scholars Elite Youth Basketball Academy is a 501(c)(3) not-for-profit organization that provides a year-round, comprehensive program for youth participants that focuses not only on basketball, but academic achievement and support, civic and communal engagement, financial literacy, and emotional health programs.


The New Jersey Scholars Elite Basketball Academy has established a strong Board of Directors to provide outstanding governance and stewardship. The board has a diverse set of functional and industry skill sets but all share a passion for youth sports and making a difference in the lives of young people. 


Our Management Team of Martin Whitfield, Pervis Ellison, Fran Nicolas and Dajuan Wagner all have distinct, experienced and dynamic grassroots, collegiate and professional backgrounds. Along with our incredible and seasoned Coaching & Player Development Staff, our goal is to create a performance based and unified basketball culture conducive to optimal growth, development and success. Our program is designed to help and assist our athletes to meet their true and desired potential.  


James Runcie


Chief Executive Officer

Education Advancement

New York, NY | Washington, DC

Todd Perry

Board Member

Managing Director

Margate Group/Wells Fargo

New York, NY

John Mirenda


President & CEO

Greentree Mortgage Company

LPGibbsboro, NJ

Marc Morial

Board Member

President & CEO

National Urban League

New York, NY

Nicholas Felmlee

Board Member

Chief Technology Officer

International Telcom

Mahwah, NJ

John Martini


Executive Partner

Holland and Knight

Philadelphia, PA

Executive Management

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Martin Whitfield

President & CEO

Responsible for the overall management, operations, direction and vision of NJ Scholars. Liaison with Nike, Corporate Sponsors and Partners.



Dajuan Wagner

Player Development & Program Director

Responsible for outreach, player  and team development activities. Focused on the Southern Tri-State region. Also responsible for event initiatives.  Member of Executive Committee.


Pervis Ellison

Program Director

Responsible for overall basketball and team operations and player-related activities. Liaison with Nike and various external partners. Member of Executive Committee.


Francis Nicolas

Program Director

Responsible for basketball operations, outreach and player-related activities. Focused on the Northern Tri-State region. Liaison with Nike and various external partners. Member of Executive Committee.


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Kenny Jackson

17U Coach

Coach Jackson began his basketball coaching journey as a Player Development Coach with Friends Central School, a Small Private High School in the Philadelphia area.  In his six years there, Jackson developed Ten (10) Division 1 Basketball Players, with two of them making it to the NBA and one of them being the 4th Overall Draft Pick in the 2019 NBA Draft.  Jackson continued to make his mark in the Philadelphia Area and is highly regarded as one of the Top Trainers.  His basketball training reputation has garnered many inquiries for his services, as Jackson was asked by Hall of Famer Joe Dumars to help run his player development program for Future Draft signees, alongside Former NBA Star Player Rasheed Wallace. With his incredible basketball pedigree and experience, we are thrilled to have Coach Jackson as our 16U NJ Scholars Head Coach.

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Jason Harrigan

16U Coach

Coach Harrigan is a championship-caliber coach with experience at both the Varsity and AAU levels.  During Coach Harrigan's six-year career at Delaware Valley Charter, he developed one of the premier programs in the greater Philadelphia area.   In 2016, "Del-Val Charter" won the Public League Championship as well as the City Championship.  The following season Coach Harrigan transitioned to Cardinal O'Hara of the Philadelphia Catholic League inheriting a last-place team which he remarkably took to the quarterfinals in just two seasons. Coach Harrigan has also served as both counselor and director for several of the top camps in the tri-state area and has considerable experience as a teacher of the game and developer of young talent. Coach Harringan has received numerous accolades including Philadelphia Inquirer's Coach of the Year, Southeastern Pennsylvania Coach of the Year, and Comcast Network Coach of the Year.


Ramone Moore

15U Coach

Coach Ramone Moore Jr. is a former Professional basketball player who played for CSM Oradea of the Romanian Liga Națională (LNBM). He attended South Philadelphia High School, where he was coached by George Anderson. Moore led the Philadelphia Public League in scoring as a senior and earned Public League MVP honors. As a redshirt sophomore at Temple, he was the Atlantic 10 Sixth Man of the Year. As a junior, he was an All-Atlantic 10 Second Team selection, and as a senior, he was an All-Atlantic 10 First Team selection. Coach Moore has an extensive basketball background/pedigree and has proven himself as a leader on and off of the court.

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