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Winning Spirit Coach



Co-Owner / Founder / Head Coach


Tom Mitchell, Ph.D. has spent his adult life coaching and teaching others how to discover their unique, greatness within. His passion for exploring the boundaries of performance excellence began as an athlete in his native Pennsylvania. His avid study of sport psychology, motivation, and leadership, has led Tom to a richly varied career as a college coach and professor, motivational speaker, NBA sport psychology counselor, business coach and team building consultant.

Using many of the mental training practices that are found in athletics, he skillfully integrates sport psychology principles into business. Speaking passionately about the intangibles or "soft skills" found in highly successful teams and leaders, Tom teaches us how to practice these intangibles and create a winning culture.

Based on these success principals and proven practices, Tom co-founded Winning Spirit Coach Franchise as well as MVP Performance Institute, bring his speaking and coaching to a wider audience.

In 2005, Tom and  NFL legend Joe Montana, co-authored an Amazon #1 Best Seller, "The Winning Spirit, Sixteen Timeless Principles that Drive Performance Excellence". He also co-authored "Winning Spirit Basketball" with NBA Hall of Famer, Chris Mullin.


Ralph Panttaja

Co-Owner / COO


Ralph Panttaja and Tom Mitchell’s relationship began 30 years ago.  Ralph was a high school senior and Tom was the basketball coach for Santa Rosa Junior College.  After a competitive shooting game and noticing a common drive and passion for the game, Ralph chose to play for Coach Mitchell.  As a sophomore, he was team captain and lead his team to a conference championship, earning a scholarship to play basketball at Western Colorado University.


Professionally, Ralph spent 22 years with Golden State Lumber, one of the largest privately owned building materials suppliers in the country. As vice president of operations, he was tasked with the direct responsibility of running one of the highest producers of revenue of any single building material supply facility. 


As an investor and entrepreneur, Ralph has owned commercial real estate in California, Idaho, Tennessee, and Utah, including office buildings, retail centers, and apartments.


In addition to real estate, Ralph owns 4 businesses, focusing on business financing, commercial real estate financing, business brokering, franchising, and executive coaching.


In 2012, Ralph co-founded National Academy of Athletics, out of his love for sports and kids. The National Academy of Athletics runs well over 250 youth sports camps per year.


Ralph has been happily married for 22 years and loves being a father of his 5 children. He has found great joy in coaching them and other young athletes, sharing with them his passion for sports and life lessons that are learned through competition and teamwork.



Director of Media Production


Carmen Maria Mitchell (she/her) is a Latina performing artist & producer.


Artistic Career:

Carmen works as a professional singer, actor and figure skater in both New York & California. Her body of artistic work includes many leading roles in musicals, plays, commercials and professional ice skating shows. She is best known for originating the role of the “Live Host” on the National Tour of Disney on Ice.


Theatre Company:

Carmen is the Founder and Executive Director of the 501c3 non-profit Redwood Theatre Company: featuring world-class artists in touring shows throughout the community, and Redwood Ice Theatre: producing spectacular figure skating shows and working in partnership with the famous Snoopy’s Home Ice rink. 



Carmen has a passion for social justice work. She and her mother, Adele Davalos Mitchell, are the Co-Founders of SOL Community Arts: providing art outreach programs to marginalized youth of color to create positive social change. Carmen’s companies also offer Full-Inclusion opportunities for artists with developmental disabilities. 


Production Company:

Carmen is the Co-Founder of FTA Productions (For The Art): woking alongside bold brands, artists to create cutting edge media content. She is also the director of the FTA Social Justice Art Series: creating social awareness and community connections through art. | @carmenmariamitchell

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