Grassroots champion of the year: Tim Blenkiron
If we could bottle and sell Tim Blenkiron’s energy, we’d all be rich. “Tim has a passion that I can’t describe … an appetite for life and a joy of teaching that amazes me every day,” says his wife, Lisa.
Blenkiron is the executive director of the No Quit Training Academy in Las Vegas and a USTA High Performance coach. An Australian native and former NCAA champion who has been playing since he was a 2-year-old, he works with hundreds of players annually who come from all over the world.
“Tennis is a metaphor for life for me,” he says. “When things get difficult, you dig deeper and try even harder, try new things, never give up. There is nothing more rewarding than teaching these life lessons through this wonderful game.”
Off the court, Blenkiron is on the board of directors for the USTA Nevada District and the Marty Hennessy Jr. Tennis Foundation. He’s also board president for the USTA Intermountain Section. And for all his passion and dedication, Blenkiron is TI’s Grassroots Champion of the Year.
“Tim is the pied-piper everyone wants to work with,” says USTA Intermountain Executive Director Rob Scott. “He has instant likability and credibility. He won our Jon Messick Leadership Award because he is a master of collaboration and inclusiveness as a leader in our section.”
“I don’t know how he does it,” adds Lisa. “He works very long days, but he always comes home happy. He finds something positive in every aspect of what he does. If we could all be more like him, the world would be a better place.” — Wendy Anderson
Tips for Success
- Having fun at the grassroots level is the most important thing. If it is fun, players will continue; if not, they’ll try something else.
- Make sure students leave a practice having achieved some level of success, so they continue to gain confidence and feel attached to tennis.
- People appreciate organization because it shows you have put thought into what you are doing.
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