Meet the Cunningham Tennis Pro Staff
Bill Racho- Director of Tennis
Bill is at the core of all programming at Cunningham Tennis. His vast knowledge and continued thirst for new teaching methodology has quickly made him the top teaching professional in the region. Bill has turned the CT ten and under program into the largest and most productive program in the metro area.
Chris Atienza- Head Pro
Chris has a great rapport with young tournament players and their parents. His accommodating and courteous style make him a favorite of all of our parents.
Ilyar Khammadov- Director of High Performance Programs
Ilyar has developed numerous ITF/College Level, and National/Sectionally ranked junior players. He was a teaching professional at the NTC from 2010-2017, serving as the NTC Performance Specialist from its inception. As a player, Ilyar developed his game in Tashkent, Uzbekistan where he played for the National Team. During his tennis journey, Ilyar spent three years training at the Louis Bruguera Tennis Academy in Barcelona, Spain.
Jon Taylor- Senior Teaching Professional
Jon has taught tennis for four decades in the Metro Area. For 15 years he served as the Director of the High Performance Program at the NTC. Jon has coached at the Sectional, National and International level. He is certified with the PTR, USPTA and USTA. Many of Jon's students have attained college scholarships and some have gone on to compete professionally. Jon brings his wealth of knowledge to our Cunningham Tennis team.
Vernon Patrick- Senior Teaching Professional
Vernon is driven to give each player the opportunity to become the best player possible. He is extremely dedicated to reinforcing proper technique to all of his students. Behind the scenes he possesses impressive artistic ability.
Victor Caraballo- Senior Teaching Professional/10 & Under Tournament Director
Victor experienced considerable success coaching at both the high school and college level. For over 20 years, he coached juniors of all levels in the NYJTL programs. Victor brings an enormous level of energy to his lessons and our club in general. He exhibits and transfers a confidence to all of his students that they can achieve their goals in tennis.
Brian Quiban - Senior Teaching Professional
Brian started playing tennis at the age of 10. He played his high school tennis for Brooklyn Technical HS and was a USTA Eastern section & nationally ranked junior player. After graduating from Depaul University, his passion for tennis led him to coaching. Brian has over 10 years coaching experience with both juniors and adults. He brings excellent communication skills, patience, and extensive technical knowledge to the court.
Steve Newby - Vice President
Steve has dedicated the last three decades to advancing tennis in the Queens area. As our former Head Pro and Director of Junior Tennis, Steve has a wealth of knowledge about the tennis industry.
Risa Frey- Club Manager
Risa brings her vast business experience to Cunningham Tennis as the manager of our club. Along with her strong business sense, Risa possesses expertise in designing programming for special needs children.
Arturo (Papo) Rodriguez- Teaching Professional
Arturo, affectionately known as Papo, is Cunningham Tennis' all around guy. Along with keeping the Cunningham facility running smoothly, Papo is one of our main coaches in our Red programs.
Mark Lerman- MTI Certified Mental Skills Coach, NCBH Youth Mental Health First Aid Certified, USTA Sport Science Certified Coach
Mark Lerman is a dynamic coach; trained, certified and experienced as a mental skills coach, strength and conditioning specialist, tennis performance specialist, USTA sport science coach, tennis professional and as a NYS health and physical education teacher. Mark has helped numerous athletes in sports ranging from figure skating, soccer, basketball, golf and of course his true passion, tennis. Recreational, high performance and elite professional athletes alike have and continue to improve their performances by working with him. An unfortunate but preventable back injury was the catalyst that guided Mark in the direction that ultimately became his life's work. He is knowledgeable, caring and commited to coaching, and we are excited for him to join the CTE team.
Pablo Blaso- Teaching Professional
Pablo Blasco started his teaching carrer at Arena Academy in Spain at the age of 18. Pablo was one of the top ranked players in Spain and played professionally before coming to the United States. He received a full scholarship to St. Francis College in Brooklyn. Pablo has flourished teaching all levels of players and is always eager to share his knowledge with his students.
Gurjot Singh- Teaching Professional
Gurjot is a former number one singles standout for Francis Lewis High School. He is currently studying Mechanical Engineering and applies his vast knowledge of physics to his tennis lessons. Gurjot is passionate about maintaining a fit lifestyle and tranfers this desire to all of his students.
Ryan Connelly- Teaching Professional/Schools Program Director
As a player Ryan was named the College Male Rookie Athlete in 2007. He was named to the NEAC Conference first team. Ryan has served as the head tennis professional for Nike Tennis Camps, Lacoste Tennis Program, and the City Parks foundation. Ryan is a natural teacher and conveys proper technique to players with an incredibly accommodating style. Ryan is currently the Director of Cunningham's Schools Program.
Hediye Karabay- Teaching Professional
Hediye is dedicated to exhibiting high quality, fun, and energetic lessons on court. She is passionate about working with our youngest players and helping them build a strong foundation in tennis and life. Currently, Hediye is training hard on and off the court as she continues to improve as a competitive tennis player and coach.
Daniel Blasco- Teaching Professional
Daniel is a current Division I player at St. Francis College. He started playing tennis at the age of four in Spain. When he turned 16, Daniel started playing international tournaments and attained an ITF ranking. Daniel has tremendous patience with our youngest players but is also involved with our Elite and Adult Programs.
Eric Roginek- Senior Teaching Professional
For those looking for a cerebral pro and desiring to understand the "science" of the game, Eric is the perfect fit.