THE PEOPLE BEHIND THE SCENES
SHELTON T. GIBBS
Shelton T Gibbs is the Founder of the foundation. He holds many hats as he has been a career firefighter for over ten years, a self-published author, an actor, a content creator, a father, a husband and much more. The foundation's concept came from his book titled "A Fight Against The Odds; Life Growing Up In Jersey City And Playing Basketball For The Legendary Coach Bob Hurley". In his writings, he describes his life from childhood through high school, detailing his hardships as well as triumphs and how it took basketball in addition to his "village's" support to get him through. Shelton played basketball from a young age all the way through college where he was a Division II Men's Basketball player at Dominican College of Blauvelt New York and graduated from there with a Bachelor's of Arts degree. After college, he worked at Job Corps, holding many titles but focusing on helping young adults navigate an alternate route of education and vocational training. He enjoyed seeing the smiles on their faces at graduation because he knew where they came from and how bad they desired to succeed. Following the death of his young cousin he realized that kids need a safe space to be kids and needed to have positive role models in their lives. He wanted to create the "village" for them and hoped that if he could touch at least one child's life it would make all the difference in the world.
Co-Founder & President
Ashley Gibbs is the Co-Founder and now President of the foundation. In 2019, her husband and her decided it was the perfect time to start the foundation following the release of his book (mentioned in Shelton T. Gibbs bio) and the death of their young cousin. Ashley is a wife, a mother and has been the Coordinator of Day Services for adults with developmental disabilities for the last seven years. She attended Dominican College of Blauvelt NY where she played Division II Women's Volleyball and graduated with a Bachelor's of Arts degree. Her passion has always been to help people in anyway that she could. As the oldest of two and being raised by a single working mother she saw what it took to get by. As President, her goals are to provide the youth in our communities the opportunity to simply be a kid at our events, to provide completely free events to the youth and their families and to grow the foundation so we can be able to support more communities, not only in New Jersey, but in her home town of Spring Valley, NY. Ashley believes in the foundation's motto, taken from an African Proverb, "It takes a village to raise a child" and hopes that all children who participate in the events, can see they too can fight against their own odds to succeed in life.
Shyquan Gibbs is dedicated to touching the lives of our youth and is honored to be the VP of the foundation. At young ages we all aspired to be a person that is loved and revered. Somewhere along our paths, there were people that tried their best to reach out and touch the hearts of young people. As a young child, Shyquan had an endless amount of people that did just that for him. He became the valedictorian of his high school class and later graduated magma cum lade from NJIT. He expresses that this was possible because he had amazing teachers and professors. In addition, his coaches and his supporters throughout his youth athletic career helped him to become the Division I basketball player he was in college. He highlights, that he would not be the loving son or brother he is today without his amazing family. His goal as VP is aligned with the foundation's goal which is to TOUCH LIVES and to do it together!
Advisor For Fundraisers and Gift Giving & Registered Agent
Elyse Gibbs was appointed to the Board of Trustees in 2019. She is currently a Government Grant Analyst and Program Monitor Manager managing funding for a large police department. Elyse is one of the founding members of the foundation and is the Advisor For Fundraisers and Gift Giving as well as the Registered Agent. Previously, Elyse worked as an Assistant Vice President in First Union Bank N.A where she managed the International Funds Transfer Division. Elyse is married to Shelton Gibbs Sr. and the mother of three beautiful adult children Shelton Jr., Shellyse and Shyquan. She has three amazing grandchildren who she loves more than they know. Elyse is the matriarch of her family and has a heart of gold. She resides in Hillside, New Jersey with her loving family.
Shellyse Gibbs was appointed the Executive Secretary for the foundation in 2019. Shellyse is an alum of Dominican College and a former high school basketball player. She is currently an educator at a prestigious elementary charter school in Newark, New Jersey. She is the proud mother of two outstanding young boys who are the pride and joy of her life. She holds herself to a high standard so she can be the best role model to not only her own children but to the many boys and girls she teaches each year. Shellyse believes that it is important for children to have a positive mentor to look up to and someone who cares about making a true difference in their lives.
SHELTON GIBBS SR. Treasurer & Trustee
Shelton Gibbs Sr. was appointed as Treasurer and Trustee for the foundation in 2019. He is currently a Senior Probation Officer in Hudson County New Jersey. He became a probation officer in 1987 as well as a member of Hudson County Drug Court. Shelton began working with troubled youth to help the beat the odds stacked against them. Shelton is also the head varsity boys basketball coach for his high school alma mater, Henry Snyder High School in Jersey City, New Jersey. He has dedicated 35 years to the school where he continues to mold scholar athletes into young men. Previous to this, at Saint Peter's College, he majored in Business and played on the men's basketball team. Shelton is listed as one of the all-time leading scorers and has since been inducted into the Hall of Fame at the college. Shelton is married to Elyse Gibbs and together they raised their three children and are enjoying their three grandchildren.
CARLOS MARTE SR.
Carlos Marte Sr. was appointed as a trustee in 2019. Carlos attended Ferris High School where he played on the varsity basketball team. Carlos became a Jersey City Police Officer in December 2019 and is enjoying having the ability to serve his community on the front lines as well as through the foundation. As a police officer he believes that it is very important to be a great role model to not only the community as a whole but specifically the children. He is happy to be able to give back to the same place he grew up in. Carlos is the father of two boys whom he absolutely adores and works hard to ensure they have the best role model possible. He is committed to carrying out the foundation's mission and is excited to be apart of what's yet to come.
Marketing Manager & Trustee
Jazlin Hernandez was appointed as the Marketing Manager for A Fight Against The Odds Foundation in 2020. Jazlin attended St. Anthony High School and is now pursuing a medical career at Rutgers University. She also owns a small business where she encourages women to feel beautiful and appreciate their features. Jazlin's goal in life is to become a Physician Associate due to the shortage of women of color in the medical field. She believes that she was called to give back to the community in every way that she can both medically and through the foundation. Jazlin is dedicated to the foundation's mission and brings many new and exciting ideas to the agenda. As the Marketing Manager she ensures to keep the public updated and inform through our social media platforms as well as various other avenues.