About USI » Advisory Board

Advisory Board

The Advisory Board for the Universal Sports Institute (USI) plays a pivotal role in fostering excellence and holistic development within the educational and athletic program. Comprised of professional coaches, athletic directors, educators, and community partners, the Board provides invaluable guidance and expertise. They offer insights into the dynamic intersection of sports performance, academic achievement, and leadership development, ensuring that USI's offerings remain relevant and impactful. The Advisory Board serves as a driving force behind USI's mission to elevate athletes' games and empower their futures, enriching the educational and athletic experience for students in the Placentia-Yorba Linda Unified School District and beyond.

Sarah Barton
Sarah Barton, Chair
Sarah Barton currently serves as the Assistant Principal at Tuffree Middle School and the Middle School Athletics Coordinator for PYLUSD. Before these roles, she taught physical education and coached for 12 years at Bernardo Yorba Middle School. She has spent most of her lifetime in the sports arena, coming up through the youth club soccer system in California, and playing and coaching soccer collegiately at Chapman University.  Sarah also holds a US Soccer national coaching license and spent many years coaching youth soccer at premier clubs in Southern California. 

Taylor Holloway Dr. Taylor Holloway, Program Director
In her role as Director of the Universal Sports Institute, Dr. Taylor Holloway draws upon more than two decades of experience as an educator and district-level administrator in public education, coupled with a significant background in athletics. Her journey in sports commenced at the age of five as a member of a club swim team, igniting a lifelong passion that propelled her into coaching club swimming and competing at the collegiate level, including participation in NCAA championship events. Growing up in a family deeply rooted in athletics, with her husband's participation in the USA Water Polo National Team and their children's active engagement in club sports, she has firsthand insight into the transformative power of sports in personal development and community cohesion. This personal experience underscores her commitment to delivering a comprehensive sports program fostering health, fitness, and performance, fulfilling our USI mission to Elevate Your Game and Empower Your Future. Dr. Holloway received her Bachelor of Arts in Economics from the University of California, San Diego, and her Doctorate from the University of Southern California in Teaching and Leading in Multicultural Societies. 

Dominique PolchowDominique Polchow, Parkview School Principal 
For over 25 years, Dominique Polchow has served as a district administrator, principal, assistant principal, and teacher, and has been with the Placentia-Yorba Linda Unified School District for over 10 years.  Currently, Dominique serves as the principal of Parkview School, which is the district’s independent study program. As an educational leader, it is her priority to initiate and cultivate collaboration, curiosity, and innovation to ensure continuous opportunities for students, teachers, and the independent study school community. She is a focused and driven leader that utilizes data to propel decisions and she strongly believes in forging relationships to foster a culture of trust and mutual respect. Mrs. Polchow lives locally with her husband and son who graduated from Yorba Linda High School in 2023. She is familiar with the dedication and hours spent training for sports as her son grew up playing football. Mrs. Polchow is excited that the Universal Sports Institute through Parkview School Independent Study will be available for young athletes pursuing professional careers. 

Christian Holiday Christian Holiday
Christian Holiday, CEO Global Media, Wrestling Coach, and Television Producer. He comes from a wrestling family where he and his four brothers all wrestled NCAA Division I. He was a 4-time state placer, a high school state champion, and went on to become a two-time NCAA Division I Academic All-American. Over the years Christian competed all across the U.S. as well as South America, Japan, Europe and Russia. After college, Christian began coaching at Cal State Fullerton. Christian has been able to combine his passion for wrestling with the advertising and production company he founded, Global Media Marketing. Christian currently oversees national advertising campaigns and has produced television content for NBC Sports, Fox Sports, ESPN, The Big Ten Network and others, which includes the World Wrestling Championships, The US Open, the World Team Trials, Beat the Streets in Times Square, and more. In 2017 Christian was named OC Register Wrestling Coach of the Year. Currently, he is the head coach at Esperanza High School, serves as the President of the Orange County Wrestling Association, is on the board for California USA Wrestling, on the board for the National Wrestling Coaches Association (NWCA), and on an advisory committee for the 2028 LA Olympics.

Steve LawsonSteve Lawson
Steve Lawson is an Army Veteran with 30 years of high school physical education teaching experience. He has been the head wrestling coach at El Dorado High School for the past 25 years and has also coached football, track and field, baseball, and tennis. In wrestling, Coach Lawson has coached 17 individual CIF Champions and his teams have won three CIF Championships and multiple League Championships. As a high school wrestler, Coach Lawson was a three-time CIF Champion, three-time Masters Champion, and a High School State and National Champion. While competing for the United States Army, he was an Armed Forces National Champion, Freestyle and Greco-Roman Espoir National Champion. While competing for California State University, Bakersfield, he was a Team USA member, winning the U.S Open National Championship, a bronze medal in the Pan American Games, and a silver medal in the US Olympic Festival.

Michael EnglishMichael English
Michael English is an educator and coach in the Placentia Yorba-Linda Unified School District. He teaches social science at Kraemer Middle School and serves as the Middle School Athletic Director, overseeing all intramural sports activities at Kraemer. In addition, Michael’s three successful years coaching boys' water polo at Yorba Linda High School earned him the title of the 2021 CIF Division II Coach of the Year. Most recently, he has continued to grow the program, revamping the club team for younger students to gain a competitive edge. Before joining PYLUSD, Michael had over a decade of athletic and coaching experience. He played at the collegiate level and assisted in coaching other successful swim and water polo CIF teams. 

JP PresleyJason “JP” Presley
Jason “JP” Presley is the new athletic director of Esperanza High School. He has over 22 years of high school football coaching experience. Before serving as the head coach at Esperanza High School, JP served as the varsity head coach at Orange Lutheran High School. In 2018, JP was named head coach for the North vs. South Orange County All-Star Classic. In addition, JP was recognized as a Coach of Character, awarded from the Orange County Athletic Directors Association. JP prides himself on running programs with deep foundations of character and integrity.  His experience within the Trinity League has added tremendous value to Esperanza’s football program, earning a playoff berth for the second time in 15 years. JP is also visible on Esperanza’s campus as a special education teacher. His personal playing experience includes All-League honors from Orange Lutheran High School and Rocky Mountain College in Billings, Montana. JP graduated from Orange Lutheran in 1992, where he was a two-sport athlete in baseball and football earning All-CIF Honors.

Richard PohleRichard Pohle Jr.
Rich Pohle's journey in baseball began at Buena Park High School, where he quickly emerged as a standout player, earning All-Star and All-League honors for three consecutive years. He continued to hone his skills at Cypress and Fullerton College before catching the attention of professional scouts. Signing with the Philadelphia Phillies after his second year of college, Rich embarked on a professional career that saw him also don the jersey of the Seattle Mariners and later play independent baseball with the Orange County Flyers. Transitioning from player to coach and trainer, he founded Rich Pohle's Baseball Development, dedicated to guiding players on their own baseball journeys. Currently serving as the head coach at Brea Olinda High School, Rich's passion for the game extends to scouting, where he serves as an associate scout for the Seattle Mariners organization, continuing to shape the future of baseball talent.

Ray ElliottRay Elliott
Ray Elliott’s athletic background includes playing basketball in high school and running cross country at New Mexico Highlands University. His passion for sports has translated into a successful coaching and administrative career in high school athletics. Ray has spent nearly a decade coaching varsity basketball, track, and cross country. Since 2017, he has served as the Athletic Director at El Dorado High School. His leadership was recently recognized by his peers when he was awarded the prestigious Central Coast Section Athletic Directors Association Norm McKenzie Award in 2019. Currently, Ray is the president of the Orange County Athletic Directors Association and the League Coordinator for the Century Conference.

Jeff PlattJeff Platt
Jeff Platt is the Athletic Director at Yorba Linda High School. Jeff earned his bachelor's degree in Economics from the University of New Mexico, where he also distinguished himself as a Division 1 football player. He later pursued a Master's degree in coaching and athletic administration from Concordia University. Jeff's career began at Esperanza High School in 1998, where he coached varsity football and taught Economics. In 2009, he played a pivotal role as a founding member of Yorba Linda High School, assuming the role of Athletic Director. Under his leadership, Yorba Linda High School's sports programs flourished, achieving remarkable success with eight CIF titles, seven CIF runner-ups, 13 CIF individual champions, and 111 league championships. In his personal life, Jeff has been happily married to Tammie Platt for 25 years, and they are proud parents of two accomplished children, Kendall and Hunter, both graduates of Yorba Linda High School. Tammie is an esteemed graduate of El Dorado High School and teaches at Bryant Ranch Elementary. Together, the Platt family embodies the values of community, excellence, and dedication to education and athletics.

Gerardo RodriguezGerardo Rodriguez
Sports have been the focal point of Gerardo's life ever since joining the wrestling team in high school. Because of sports, he learned that the keys to success in life are hard work and dedication. Gerardo wrestled in high school and was a three-year letterman. He continued his wrestling career at Cypress College where he met two life mentors, Mike Flook and Sam Lopez. Through their tutelage, Gerardo decided to start coaching and found his passion. He coached wrestling for 20 years at the high school level and served as an assistant coach at his alma mater, Western High School, for two years, and then at Lakewood High School for 8 years. Gerardo was also the head wrestling coach at Valencia High School from 2008 to 2018 before becoming the school's Athletic Director in 2019. He also taught special education at Lakewood for four years and Social Science and AVID at Valencia for fourteen years. He received his bachelor's degree in History from California State University, Fullerton.