MICHAEL LONEY - FOUNDER
Michael founded Freedom Hoops in 2014 alongside friend and mentor Kevin Kacy of Freedom Fire. Throughout his career, basketball seemed to promise fulfillment but God used basketball to teach Michael to solely boast in Christ. He has a passion to follow Christ, romance his wife each day, point his son to Jesus, and to use basketball and the gospel to disciple and transform urban youth to know God.
DARON GRAY - MENTORSHIP & OPERATIONS
Daron Gray is married to Tonae and they have three children, Unity, Nubia and Dhosai. He was born and raised in Kansas City, MO and is a life long Kansas City Chiefs and Royals fan! Daron is a military veteran who served in the United States Navy at Naval Air Station Whidbey Island, WA. He received his undergrad from California Baptist University and is currently pursuing a Masters of Theological Studies with a focus in Pastoral Ministry at Midwestern Baptist Seminary.
Daron came to know Jesus as Lord in the fall of 2009 at a small family church in San
Bernardino, CA. In the summer of 2015, Daron and Tonae sensed the leading of God to relocate from southern California back to Daron’s hometown of Kansas City, MO. Once they fully transitioned to Kansas City, Daron and his family started attending Redeemer Fellowship where they would become active members and still currently serve within this body. In the spring of 2017, Daron had the opportunity to grow in pastoral ministry by participating in Redeemer’s newly established 2-year minority residency.
Daron is passionate about Kansas City and specifically the urban core. He longs to see the
beauty of Jesus, communicated by the gospel, captivate the hearts and minds of kids in our city resulting in transformed lives to the glory of God.
KRISTEN LONEY - ADMINISTRATOR
Kristen grew up in the Kansas City area. Upon graduating from K-State, she moved back to the area, where she met and married her husband Michael in 2011. She taught media classes for five years at Basehor-Linwood High School and now stays home with their son, Caleb. She manages all forms of media for Freedom Hoops and handles financial aspects of the organization.
JT BATEY - STUDENT MINISTRY & BASKETBALL OPERATIONS
Jacob Batey, or JT as the boys call him, is the son of Rachel Evans, brother of Kara Batey, and uncle of Karter Ann. JT was born in Columbia, MO, and raised by his mother and stepfather, Jerry Evans, in Kansas City, MO. JT graduated from Blue Springs High School before attending California Coast Bible College in Ventura, CA, and Hillsong College in Sydney, Australia. JT is currently finishing his Bachelor's Degree at UMKC with a major in Communications and a minor in Black Studies while simultaneously pursuing credentials through the Assemblies of God.
JT has felt called to the east side of Kansas City since his days serving at Sheffield Family Life Center. God has transformed his life over the last seven years and continues to develop and stretch him. JT believes that God has put an unshakable burden for this city in his heart that he will spend the rest of his life chasing. JT is passionate about discipling young people by simply bringing them along in real life, and meeting practical needs as Jesus did. Community means everything to JT because his community altered his future. His father has been in prison since he was young, and Pastor Kevin and Melissa Brown became a second family to him along with his big brother, Jacob Brown.
In his free time, JT loves playing pick up basketball anywhere in the city, and enjoying coffee with his Bible. He enjoys extra time with the boys, along with the Chiefs and Royals. Feel free to email JT anytime as he loves making new connections over coffee or shootarounds. Email JT