Asa Lewis Jr.

Asa Lewis Jr.


Behavior coach, Peoria Public Schools; founder, Make Your Marq


Occupation: Asa Lewis Jr. coaches on the football field and in the classroom. By day, he is a behavior coach at Elise Ford Allen Academy, where he works with students, staff and parents to help children develop self awareness, self control and the positive habits that contribute to academic success. He often uses skills he learned as an assistant football coach at Peoria High School in his work with students at Elise Ford Allen and Make Your Marq, the non-profit organization he founded in honor of his late brother.   


Community Involvement: Make Your Marq is a tool for Lewis’ community involvement with grade school and high school students. The organization spotlights  students’ successes and promotes personal, social and leadership skills through a variety of activities, including yoga, the arts and managing social media platforms such as TikTok and the Make Your Marq podcast. He also organizes students to volunteer at community events.


Education: Associates degree, education, Illinois Central College; bachelor of arts, education, Western Governors University (by March 2024)  


Three things he’s passionate about: Encouraging positivity in our youth, mental health awareness, encouraging young people to try activities other than sports


Three favorite hobbies: Spending time with his dogs, Bowser and Koopa, coaching football, and golfing


Career Influence or Inspiration: His wife Katherine Lewis, grandmother Julie Storck, brother Darnell Lewis, and a friend Adam O’Neill are the four who shaped his life most. But his brother, Marques Lewis-Cotton is the inspiration for what he does. “We lost him in 2017 to gun violence. He had a fun, out-going personality but no direction in life. I always wondered where he would be if he had received positive guidance. His smiling face will alway be my motivation to make sure we lose as few of our young people as possible to avoidable decisions.”


Inspirational Quote: “When I was a boy and I would see scary things in the news, my mother would say to me, ‘Look for the helpers. You will always find people who are helping.’ ” Fred Rogers

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