Tennis Professional Staff

All I’On Club teaching professionals are USPTA or PTR certified and offer private and group instruction.

Mehdi El-Kheddiwi
Director of Tennis / Director of High Performance Junior Development

Mehdi was born in Paris, France and raised in Ottawa, Ontario, Canada. He played junior tennis at Ottawa’s famous Rideau Tennis and Squash Club. Mehdi was an active athlete, earning a starting position in every high school discipline he pursued, including soccer, volleyball, basketball, Olympic handball, badminton and track and field. After studying journalism in college he moved to Myrtle Beach to begin a successful career with the town’s daily newspaper. He left the newspaper to become the assistant tennis professional at Prestwick Tennis and Swim Club in Myrtle Beach and a few years later, its Director of Swim and Tennis. Mehdi will bring extensive knowledge and experience to I’On Club’s junior and adult development and can sum up his tennis philosophy in three words: Care, Impact, and Performance.

Chris Kiesel
Senior Teaching Professional

Chris Kiesel is originally from Louisville, KY. He spent ten years at Family Circle, and during five of those years he served as Director of the Advanced Junior Program for tournament players between the ages of 8-18. Most recently, Chris was the Assistant Coach of the Charleston Southern University Women’s Tennis Team. Chris holds a Bachelor’s degree in Biology from the College of Charleston and a Master’s in Business Administration from The Citadel. He lives with his wife Katherine and their two little girls Nora and Hadley. Besides tennis, Chris enjoys fishing and cycling.

Mitch White
Teaching Professional

Mitch began his career as a professional tennis player and coach, and then as a director at several prestigious tennis and country clubs. Having coached from beginner to WTA and ATP level he discovered his joy for developing top junior players. Mitch’s philosophy is that preparing at the level required to play tennis professionally can and should be the greatest opportunity for building the character and skills young players need for a lifetime of success. Mitch has started and run several successful businesses in his professional career, currently as CEO of Culinary Health Solutions and as President & CEO of Graw Foods which is a healthy food consulting & brokering company. In 2016 he was also interim CFO for Healthy Human Life which is a stainless steel water bottle e-commerce company. All three companies are based in Charleston SC. Mitch is originally from Washington, DC, and is a former member of YPO Metro DC chapter. He lived in Charleston briefly in 1988-1989 while playing the satellite and challenger tour, and he and his wife, Natalie, moved to Charleston in 2010 with their 3 children and 3 dogs.

Gavin Smith
Teaching Professional

Gavin Smith, a 5.0 Tennis Player, is from Pennsylvania and joined us from Family Circle, where he served as a High Performance and Adult Coach for three years.
After majoring in Early Childhood Development and playing tennis at Whittier College in California, Gavin worked as a coach at Wisehaven Tennis Center. He has been teaching tennis since his high school days, when he played #1 at one of Pennsylvania’s best teams. Gavin lives in Mount Pleasant and enjoys music, sports and developing his students’ tennis skills and strategies.


Private Lessons are available with one of our award winning tennis professionals.

To schedule a private tennis lesson, please call the I’On Club front desk at (843) 971-7834.

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