Staff

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Veronica Burton, Executive Director

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Coach Veronica Burton has over 25 years of cheerleading, dance and gymnastics experience.  Her coaching experience includes serving as Head Coach for the Our Lady of Perpetual Help Catholic School in Washington, DC; Bishop McNamara High School in Forestville, MD; Maryland Cheer Magic All Stars in Largo, MD; and Crimson Heat All Stars in Forestville, MD.  She has coached teams to over 1500 Local, Regional and National Championship Titles.

Veronica is USASF Levels 1-5 Certified in Stunts, Basket Tosses and Gymnastics and she is First Aid and CPR Certified.  Her coaching philosophy is “every child is a star; each of them has something unique and special to add to your program – with the right amount of love, support and guidance, each of them will shine”.

She was awarded the 2016 IEP Award for Integrity, Enthusiasm and Passion, the 2011 Jamfest Coach of the Year Award, 2010 and 2007 Maryland Top Coach Award, she was a National Coach of the Year Finalist and she was a Community Service Honoree for the Grant My Wish Foundation.  Veronica also works as a Senior Managing Consultant for IBM.

Michele Houston, Asst. Director

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Coach Houston has over 26 years of cheerleading and dance coaching experience.  She coached the Bunker Hill Elementary School in Washington, DC for 21 years.  During her tenure, She was successful in winning 9 DCIAA Elementary Championships and the last 8 were consecutive!  She also has 13 Region C Championships.  Coach Houston has been a coach for Crimson Heat All Stars for the last 16 years. She is the Assistant Director of the Program.  She currently coaches Crimson Heat FEVER and Crimson Heat FLAME.  She is USASF Levels 1-4 Certified in Stunts and Basket Tosses, she is DCIAA Certified and she is First Aid and CPR Certified.  Her coaching philosophy is “all children can learn and be successful in all endeavors!”  Coach Houston is a Pre-school teacher for D.C. Public Schools.

Monique Smith, Chief Financial Officer

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Coach Monique has over 20 years of cheerleading and gymnastics experience.  She has served on the Crimson Heat staff for the last 16 years.  She was also a member of the University of Maryland Gymnastics Troop - Gymkana.  Monique is USASF Levels 1-5 Certified in Stunts and Basket Tosses, she is also USASF Levels 1-4 Certified in Gymnastics. Her coaching philosophy is "Teamwork is essential to a successful outcome - it's amazing what can be accomplished when team efforts are put forth generously and passionately, without the expectation of accolades in return."

Jon Rolle, Director of Cheer

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Coach Jon is the  Cheer Program Director and Head Coach of our World's Team , Crimson Heat 5Alarm.  He is USASF Levels 1-5 Certified in Stunts, Tumbling and Baskets.  Jon Rolle has had 18 years of experience in the cheerleading industry and had been with Crimson Heat for seven years.  Coach Jon’s coaching philosophy is that every child can attain success with the right attitude and combination of passion, dedication/work-ethic, and self-discipline.  Coach Jon is a former cheerleader and Captain of the Four-Time UCA and NCA Collegiate National Champion NC State University Cheerleaders. Coach Jon has coached and choreographed at the All-Star, High School, and Collegiate levels. He is the former Head Coach at Charles E. Jordan High School in Durham, N.C., and is also the former Head Coach of the University of North Carolina at Greensboro. Coach Jon is also the former Camp Director for Coastal Camps where he coordinated summer and choreography camps for many teams across the east coast. When not coaching, Jon is a nationally respected Cheer judge working for several of the largest Competition Companies in the industry. Coach Jon was a 2009 World Bronze Medalist competing in the Coed-Open Level 6 division with South Jersey Storm All Stars. .  Coach Jon is an Educator in the District of Columbia Charter School System and serves on the USASF Regional Advisory Board.  He was awarded the 2015 USASF National Coach of the Year. 

James Dickerson, Director of Dance

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Coach James is the  Dance Program Director.  Coach James has over 13 years of experience as a professional dancer and dance instructor.  James has been a part of the DDO Artist Agency since 2004.  He has performed on the BET Gospel Explosion with CECE Winans, with the Circle Players Production of both “Hairspray” and “The Color Purple” and on the Country Music Awards with Tracie Adkins.  James has expertise in Jazz, Hip Hop, Modern, Pom and Liturgical Dance.  Under his leadership, Crimson Heat “Code Red”, won 1st. Place at the prestigious Dance SUMMIT in Orlando, Florida.  Coach James works as a Family Services Specialist and Youth Advocate for the Federal Government.

Derric Stotts, Director of Gymnastics

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 Coach Derric has been involved with Gymnastics for over 18 years.  He began his training at Royal T’s Gymnastics Center (now known as Maryland State Gymnastics) in 1996 where he trained under Brian Shrewsbury.  Coach Derric also trained under the leadership of world renowned Olympic Gymnastics Instructor Bella Carolli.  In 2007, he qualified for the USA National CompetitionTeam, a selective team that would go on to prepare for the 2008 Olympic Games. Derric currently works as an entertainment employee for the Washington Wizards, and other NBA teams. Coach Derric is the Director of Gymnastics and Program Administrator for Crimson Heat All Stars.

Kelly Crawford, Dance Coach

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Kelly Benjamin has over 15 years dance and cheerleading experience.  In addition to cheerleading for her high school varsity team (under the direction of Coach Burton) she also cheered for 3 years during college at the Rochester Institute of Technology. During high school Kelly performed as a dancer with the Dance Institute of Washington Youth Reporatory Company, National Ballet and Washington Ballet.  While in college Kelly was a principal dancer with the RIT/NTID Dance company.   In 2006, Coach Kelly joined Garth Fagan Dance Company, who founded and served as artistic director for many years.  He the Tony Award winning choreographer of Disney's The Lion King.  After 2 years of touring nationally and internationally with Garth Fagan Dance, Coach Kelly returned home to Crimson Heat All-stars in 2009. She is USASF Levels 1-4 Certified in Stunts and Basket tosses.  Coach Kelly works as a contractor providing environmental support at NASA Goddard Space Flight Center. Her coaching philosophy is "Good technique is built over time, not overnight" 

Tonya Brown, Cheer Coach

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Tonya Brown has over 16 years of cheerleading and dance experience. Tonya was member of the Crimson Heat family on the first Crimson Heat Inferno team.  After graduating college, Coach Tonya returned back home to the Firehouse during the 2006-2007 season.  Coach Tonya is going into her 6th year coaching at Crimson Heat and her coaching philosophy; "To share the knowledge I have learned, the passion I have gained, and the potential that I see in every person that is willing to listen", is the driving force behind her continued success at CHAS. Coach Tonya is USASF Levels 1-3 Certified in Stunts and Basket Tosses. She currently works as an Executive Assistant

Kimberly Clark, Cheer Coach

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Kimberly Clark has over 15 years cheerleading and dance experience.  She started dancing at the age of 3 and cheerleading at the age of 5.  As a freshman in high school, she joined the Junior Varsity Cheerleading Team, which was coached by Veronica Burton.  Her coaching philosophy is “If you have it in your heart and believe it, then you can achieve it.”   This will be her 10th season coaching at Crimson Heat.  Coach Kim is USASF Levels 1-5 Certified in Stunts, Basket Tosses, and Gymnastics. Coach Kim works for the Department of Defense as a Personnel Security Specialist

LaToya Coleman, Cheer Coach

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Toya Coleman has over 20 years of experience in the cheerleading industry.  She is a former cheerleader and graduate of Florida Agricultural & Mechanical University.  She was also a member of Crimson Heat All-Stars Inferno and Maryland Twisters F5.  She attended the very first Cheerleading Worlds with the Twisters in the Large Senior Level 5 division in which she received a silver medal. She has coached and choreographed at the All-Star and High School levels.  Coach Toya’s coaching philosophy is “Excellence is the gradual result of always striving to do better.”  Coach Toya is USASF Levels 1-5 Certified in Stunts and Basket Tosses.  Coach Toya will be going into her seventh year coaching at Crimson Heat. Coach Toya is a Juvenile Probation Officer for the State of Maryland.

Ryan Daniel, Cheer Coach

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Ryan Daniel has over 20 years of cheerleading experience and 10 years of coaching experience in the cheerleading industry. Coach Ryan has been with Crimson Heat for nine years. Coach Ryan's coaching philosophy is to create an environment that encourages athletes to learn and develop on and off the mat. She strives to create a positive environment for athletes in good and bad times. Professionally Coach Ryan is currently working on her doctorate in Educational Leadership and is an Elementary Assistant Principal in Prince George County Public Schools. 

Aleisha Edwards, Cheer Coach

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Coach Aleisha Edwards joined the Crimson Heat Family during Season 15, first as a supporter of her children who were athletes in the program, then as a coach of the Tiny Level 1 Team Embers and the Senior Level 1 Team, Blaze.  Coach Aleisha brought to the program over 20 years of cheerleading experience.  She began cheering as a child and cheered through elementary, middle and high school.  She coached in the school and recreational  system for many years including positions with MD Christian Academy, Cougars Competitive Cheer and HD Woodson High School. Coach Aleisha is USASF Certified in levels 1-2 Stunts/Tosses and Tumbling and holds a CPR and First Aid Certification. In her personal life, Coach Aleisha is a certified Property and Project Manager, and a part time student at the University of the District of Columbia  earning a Bachelors in Construction Management. She is also an entrepreneur that dabbles into many art projects including bling apparel and footwear.

Tiara Jackson, Cheer Coach

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Tiara Jackson has 15 combined years of cheerleading and tumbling experience. She has cheered All-Star for 12 of those years with Crimson Heat. She was one the members on Crimson Heat's first Worlds team, 5 Alarm. She is a part-time student studying Biology/Medicine and a full time worker as an Office Assistant. Tiara's philosophy is "Perfection is not attainable, but if we chase perfection we can catch excellence." Tiara coached the first team to win a full paid bid to the 2015 Summit, small junior level 4 Fire. This is Tiara's third season coaching Crimson Heat. 

Trinika McClain, Cheer Coach

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Coach Trinika started cheering when she was 8 years old and has been in love with the sport ever since.  She cheered in elementary, junior high and high school and began her coaching career right after completing her academic studies.  She coached the #14 Boys and Girls club in the Department of Recreation for 4 years before beginning her All Star career.  While coaching under the direction of Veronica Burton and Jon Rolle, Coach Trinika has coached teams to several local, state and national titles.  Her coaching philosophy is " your team is your family and your routine is your best friend". Coach Trinika was born and raised in Washington, D.C. and works a Pre-K4 teacher at a Charter School in D.C.

Keiana Myers, Cheer Coach

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Keiana Myers has over 16 years of combined cheer and tumble experience. She cheered All Star for Crimson Heat for 13 years beginning at the age of 5. She was apart of the first Crimson Heat All-stars Worlds team 5-Alarm that placed in the top 10 in the 2012 Worlds Competition. She is a part-time student working on a degree in physical therapy and is an associate for Lord & Taylor. Keiana's philosophy is "you'll never know your limits unless you push yourself to them." Keiana Coached the 2016 U.S. Finals champions, Crimson Heat Tiny prep level 1 Flares. This is her third season coaching at Crimson Heat.

Amika Rudisil, Cheer Coach

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Amika Rudisill has 18 years of experience in competitive cheerleading. A former VCU cheerleader, she started cheerleading at 9 years of age, with competitive Rec. Cheer and since then, has cheered in College and All-Star, 2 years in which, were with Crimson Heat. With 4 years of coaching experience, this will be Coach Amika's 2nd year Coaching with the Organization. Her Coaching philosophy is simple, "Cheer is Life". Her passion for the sport is implemented in every practice as her sole goal is to be able to mold All-American Athletes.

Alexys Thornton, Cheer Coach

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Alexys Thornton has 19 years of cheer and dance experience. She started cheering for Bunker Hill Elementary school in 1998 under Coach Michele Houston. She was a Crimson Heat Cheerleader for 7 years. She was on the very first Flame team in 2002. This is her 6th season coaching. Her Philosophy is "Strength doesn't come from what you can do; it comes from overcoming the things you once thought you couldn't. She is a nursing student and a Clinical Medical Technician for MedStar.

Charmeia Shell, Cheer Coach

Charmeia Shell has over 20 years of experience in cheerleading. She started cheering for her local Boys and Girls Club at the age of 10.  After graduating elementary school, Coach Charmeia cheered for her Middle School where she was team captain. During High School she decided to “step up her skill, that’s when she joined the Maryland Cheer Magic All-Stars under the direction of Coach Veronica Graves. After graduating college she decided to dedicate her time to the sport that she loves most, cheerleading. She decided to “come back home”, and has been coaching for Crimson Heat All-Stars for the past eight years.  Her philosophy is “The youth is the prelude to the chronicle of our future, teach them… inspire them…guide them… and motivate them to become productive citizens AND profound future leaders of America.” Coach Charmeia is an IT Specialist.

Niki Washington, Cheer Coach

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Niki Joy-Washington has over 15 years of cheerleading experience and is going into her 8th season of coaching at Crimson Heat. Before returning to Crimson Heat for season 16, Coach Niki was certified through AACCA and USASF levels 1-3. Currently holding a certification for Heart saver CPR/AED and First Aid. Her philosophy is “as coaches, we have to push kids – more correctly get them to push themselves – to reach their potential no matter the age”. Coach Niki, for the last 13 years has worked at Georgetown University Hospital as an Administrator.

Afreeka Wilson, Cheer Coach

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Afreeka Wilson has over 13 years of cheerleading experience.  She started cheering at a very young age and continued to cheer through high school where she was one of the team captains.  This year she will be entering into her 8th season with Crimson Heat.  Coach Afreeka is also an assistant cheer coach at Dr. Henry A. Wise, Jr. High School.  Her coaching philosophy is “There’s no such thing as the word can’t.  You can do anything you put your mind to.  I believe in you, God believes in you, now you just have to believe in yourself.”  She and her two children joined the CHAS cheer and dance program and one thing she always say is she knew she found home when found Crimson Heat All Stars, Inc.  Coach Afreeka is USASF Levels 1-5 Certified in tumbling. 

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