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Real Jaco:            Academy of Leadership & Soccer


Phone: 310-513-5104

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Matthew Marks


Originally from California, Matt has lived in Costa Rica for more than a decade.

Over the past 20 years, Matt has interviewed and mentored CEOs, business executives and athletes on leadership psychology, developing a winning mindset and helping them develop plans to live their best possible lives.

Matt has served an advisor and strategist to numerous startup and early stage
companies and was a Co-founder and CEO of New Media & Entertainment, Inc., BioXcellerator and BioXskincare.

As co-founder of Real Jaco, Matt’s vision is to help secure a brighter future for our
children. In his words, “We are dedicated to helping our children become the leaders of tomorrow. As coaches, leaders, and teachers we’re trying to bring individuals up to their highest level of competence.”

Matt lives with his 13-year old son, JC, in Jaco, Costa Rica.

Sherman Vasquez Chaves

Director of Youth Soccer

Sherman is a former professional soccer player in Costa Rica and a physical education teacher with extensive coaching experience.

As a soccer player, Sherman was a 2002 National Division II Champion in Costa Rica with the Asociación Deportiva Guanacaste. He was also a National Division I runner up in 2006 and in 2009 with Puntarenas FC.

Sherman received his B Rating Soccer License from the University of San Jose in 2012. In 2013, he earned his Bachelor of Science in education from the University of Central America with an emphasis on teaching physical education and sports.

He has taught physical education at Immaculada, a private school in Jaco, the Center Educational Estrellita Oromontana Puntarenas, and at Castro Carazo Metropolitan University.

His coaching experience includes serving as assistant coach for the Jaco Rays Division II team, assistant to Luis Fernandez Fallas, Costa Rica’s U23 National Team Coach, and as a coach at the LDA Puntarenas soccer school.

Nuria Ferrero

Director of Operations

Born and raised in Argentina, Nuria has lived in Jaco since 2001.

Nuria has a passion for youth education and the arts and has been involved in community programs both in Argentina and Costa Rica over the past 20 years.

Nuria has a degree in Media and Design and her current company, Icon Design & Print is a leading advertising and signage company in the community.

The Futbol (soccer) tradition runs deep in the Ferrero family and Nuria has passed the tradition on to her son 10-year old son Nicolas.

Ana Milena Aricapa

Director of Sponsor Relations

A native of Colombia, Ana has been a leader in the Jaco Community since 2006.

Ana’s professional experience ranges from Sales & Marketing to ownership of many small businesses in the community. Ana and her husband Lisle were the first to help financially support Real Jaco: Academy of Leadership & Futbol.

Ana is also the co-founder of Jaco Wellness SRL, a non-profit organization dedicated to helping keep Jaco children off the streets.

Hartley Roadie

Director of  U.S. Operations

Founder and managing partner of Arizona restaurants Gringo Start Street Bar, The Montauk, and soon to come The Blox Urban Market located in the heart of Downtown Phoenix.

Hartley has a proven track record of successfully taking businesses from concept to market.

A community leader, Hartley believes that connecting young people with mentors and educators is the best way to break the cycle of poverty that effects countless people across the globe. Hartley has participated with numerous charitable organizations and events, including Habitat for Humanity and Everyday Heroes Like You.

Hartley graduated from Arizona State University with a degree in finance.

Nahin Jhoan Lopez

Assistant Coach

Nahin has been coaching kids in the Jaco Community since 2010.

Nahin plays an integral role working with Sherman Vasquez in creating our youth soccer curriculum.  He currently plays for the Jaco Rays, our local Div II team and formerly played for Costa Rica’s U23 National Team.

Nahin’s goal is to play professional soccer in the United States or Europe by 2018.


Ben Smith

Board Member

Ben’s wide experience includes serving as President, Harvey Mackay University, running national technology consulting organizations, and creating innovative advertising strategies for household brands and major events including: Waste Management Phoenix Open, Phoenix Suns, and Muhammad Ali’s Celebrity Fight Night.

Ben attended the University of Arizona where he played soccer. He is now a partner of the Unexpected Art Gallery, which curates unique collections for individuals and is chief strategist of Surplus Asset Management, a premier auction, liquidation, sales, and reverse logistics company.

Walter Chomichuk

Board member

Walter is the owner of Riverside developments and the managing partner for real estate investments and developments that span across the U.S., Canada, and Costa Rica.

A former high school principal, and member of the Paradise Valley Rotary Club, Walter’s philanthropic efforts focus on education, and empowering & educating single mothers and children.

Will Hartsough

Board Member

Will is an award winning director of youth programs both for the Boys & Girls Club and Sonoma County, California Juvenile Hall. Since 2011, Will has developed programs to help incarcerated juvenile offenders become productive and responsible citizens.

His expertise includes helping young people develop a wide range of skills – including financial literacy, public speaking, anger management, and others. Will also collaborates with Santa Rosa Junior College to help area youth transition from Juvenile Hall into college.

Will is a former college football player with a Bachelor’s Degree in Sociology from San Francisco State University.

Eric Stoffers

Board member

Eric is the CEO of Bioscience Americas and is an internationally recognized author, investment manager and philanthropist.  With 15 years of executive experience his expertise includes private equity, mergers & acquisitions, recapitalization, and development.

Eric earned his degree in Business Administration from Northern Arizona University.

His goals include helping alleviate people’s suffering around the world and helping every child get a great education.