Marquis Taylor is the Founder & President of C4C. Basketball was his tool to overcome the challenges he faced growing up in South Central Los Angeles. He got a basketball scholarship to Stonehill College in 2002 and graduated with a Bachelors Degree in Communication in 2006. Upon graduating, he spent four years in the real estate finance industry before matriculating into graduate school at Smith College, where he received his Masters in Teaching. While at Smith College, he joined a program that mentored at-risk teenager living in low-income communities in Springfield, Ma., instructing them on how to coach youth sports.
During his time at Smith, he recognized the need to engage students, who were disenfranchised at school, and teach them job readiness skills while helping them stay on track to graduate from high school. By combining his professional background and basketball experience, he founded Coaching4Change.
In 2011, Marquis was recognized by Echoing Green and Open Society Foundation as one of the country’s leading social entrepreneurs for developing this innovative organization. In 2 years, C4C has expand from working with 10 participants per semester to 165 participants per semester, including college, high school and elementary students between Boston and Brockton. Under Taylor’s leadership, the organization has grown from a from an operating budget of $15,000 to $310,000. Coaching4Change now has two full-time employees, three part-time employees, and 37 volunteers.
Marquis is a part of the steering committee of the New Frontier Network at the John F. Kennedy Library, and is the recipient of a top 40 Under 40 award for Young Civic Minded Emerging Leaders. He has also been selected by the Jewish Community Relations Council to be be a part of the Boston-Haifa Leadership Exchange, which brings social justice leaders together from the United States and Israel.