Charlie Chacos


District Executive Director, YMCA Florida’s First Coast


What can you share about your background? How did your involvement with the YMCA begin?


I grew up in Los Angeles and moved to Darien, Connecticut, at age 12. I played soccer and basketball at the Darien YMCA where my dad was a board member. This was my first experience with a YMCA, and one that shaped my future career and lifelong love of sports. I have always been very outgoing and passionate about connecting with others, which is why working for the YMCA is a perfect fit. I love getting to interact with members and the greater community on a regular basis.


Tell us about your role as District Executive Director, YMCA Florida’s First Coast.


I am excited about this new role where I’ll be overseeing operations at both the Ponte Vedra Family YMCA and the new Y opening in next summer at Baptist HealthPlace in Nocatee. Northern St. Johns County is growing exponentially, and the YMCA is committed to strengthening this community through youth development, healthy living and social responsibility. With two locations, we are able to serve even more community members with our unique programs and services. As district executive director, I wear many hats but I am focused on building bridges within the community, managing resources, developing membership, fostering innovation in programming and overseeing a strong team.


What do you like to do when you’re not at work?

I love being outdoors. If I’m not at work, you can find me fishing, playing tennis and spending time with my wife and kids.


Do you use YMCA facilities?

Yes, I regularly play tennis at the Williams Family YMCA and I am on several teams. I also enjoy playing basketball and lifting weights at the branches. We have a great facility at the Ponte Vedra YMCA with brand-new cardio and strength equipment, a variety of group exercise classes taught by empowering instructors, a cycling studio, a heated eight-lane outdoor pool and a Healthy Living Center.

The Ponte Vedra Y is more than a just a gym and swim. We aim to serve as a total wellness hub of resources to this community and positively change the lives of members both inside of the building and out in nearby neighborhoods. I hope everyone members and nonmembers will come check out all of the exciting initiatives we have happening at the Ponte Vedra YMCA.


What do you like most about living on the First Coast?

I live in Julington Lakes in St. Johns County. We really enjoy this area’s focus on outdoor living. I love going to the beach, visiting my in-laws in St. Augustine, visiting my parents in Amelia Island, playing tennis with my friends at the Williams Y and spending time with my family in the outdoors.


You won the 2019 Firehouse Subs Men's Doubles Tennis Tournament in May. Tell us about that experience.

Yes, my friend Stuart McNally and I won the 3.5 men’s doubles division. I met Stuart at the Williams Family YMCA and we quickly became friends. He is a board member at the Williams Y and a great advocate for the First Coast YMCA as a whole. 


When did you begin playing tennis?

I began playing tennis about two years ago, when I first began working at the Williams Family YMCA. All of our tennis members were having fun and I noticed the social nature of the sport, then decided I wanted to be a part of it. I fell in love with the sport right away and it has become a passion of mine. 


Who’s your favorite tennis pro?

I am a huge Roger Federer fan and also enjoy watching John Isner. Isner is 6′10″ and I am 6′5″, so I like rooting for the tall guys.


Would you like to tell us about your family?

My wife, Morgan, of 15 years, is a nurse practitioner at Community Hospice. We met at the University of Tennessee and are both big Vol fans. My daughter, Sloane, is 8 years old and my son, Drew, is 4 years old. 


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