PAL Staff

Mission Statement

Crime Prevention through Athletics, Recreation and Education. Programs address various challenges including gang involvement, conflict resolution, childhood obesity, goal setting, stranger-danger, and more.

Founded in 1960, the Police Athletic League of St. Petersburg’s primary purpose is to address the needs of youth considered disadvantaged and/or at-risk and their potential negative involvement with law enforcement. PAL’s goal is to provide youth with opportunities to become involved in alternative activities to crime, by making available a wide array of program choices designed to improve self-esteem, while learning valuable team-building skills in a structured, non-threatening environment.

Team Members

Paula Potts
Program Director
Paula has been working for local PALs for nearly 20 years. She has filled roles of Senior Counselor, Program Director and Assistant Director. Paula is certified in HIV/AIDs Awareness, Baby Basics Classes, CPR, First Aid, and Healthy Family Training. She specializes in curriculum for after school programs and summer camp, and she has developed mentoring programs for boys and for girls. Born and raised in St. Petersburg, Paula has worked with several generations of families in her service to the community through her work at PAL and other agencies.
P: 727-800-1PAL (1725)
Officer Lopez
Athletic Director
A 3-year veteran of the St. Petersburg Police Department, Officer Lopez has been assigned to the Police Athletic League following a stint as a patrol officer. Officer Lopez was a multi-sport athlete in high school and played basketball at the collegiate level for two years. He has coached numerous teams in different sports over the last 10 years and has served as an assistant in several team camps. In both years that he worked with the University of Florida Softball Team, the team made it all the way to the Women’s College World Series. Officer Lopez is a member of the Mayor’s Mentors program, which is associated with the Take Stock in Children scholarship program for the Pinellas County School Board, and also serves the police department as a CPR instructor, supplemental recruiter, and member of the SWAT team. Officer Lopez knows first-hand the dedication and commitment necessary to achieving success on and off the playing field. He is enthusiastic about the opportunity to put his considerable experience and knowledge to work as a positive influence and mentor for PAL program participants, helping them take steps that ultimately will lead them to achieving success in life.
P: 727-800-1PAL (1725)
Mrs Toolie
Assistant Program Director
P: 727-800-1PAL (1725)