USTA Names Recipients of Grassroots Tennis Awards

WHITE PLAINS, N.Y., Sept. 11, 2019 - The USTA announced its 2019 awards recipients honored for their dedication and contributions to growing the sport of tennis both locally and nationwide. The eight awards were bestowed at the USTA Semiannual Meeting and Conference at the Grand Hyatt Hotel in New York City on Sept. 2.

“We are proud to honor these remarkable individuals and organizations for their ongoing efforts to help grow the game of tennis,” said Craig Morris, Chief Executive, Community Tennis, USTA. “From adaptive tennis and outstanding leadership to volunteers and community outreach in under-served communities, the important work being awarded is truly impacting and empowering communities across the country.”

The 2019 award winners are listed below:

Adaptive Tennis Award - Lob-Stars Program (Hanover, Mass.) Lob-Star and its program lead, Lucy Dickman, were honored with the 2019 USTA National Adaptive Tennis Community Service Award. The USTA annually bestows this recognition upon a program or program leader that has demonstrated continued excellence, dedication and service in tennis for an adaptive tennis community.

Barbara Williams Service Award - Paula Hale (Raleigh, N.C.) Paula Hale, President and CEO, USTA Southern Section, was recognized with the Barbara Williams Service Award. Established in 2003, the award recognizes a female volunteer who, through her leadership and by example, has encouraged and inspired others to become volunteers and assume leadership roles at the community, section and/or national levers of the USTA.

Bill Talbert Junior Sportsmanship Award - Stevie Gould (Las Vegas, Nev.) and Cherrial Odell (Corte Madera, Calif.) Stevie Gould and Cherrial Odell were honored with the Bill Talbert Junior Sportsmanship Award for exemplifying the finest qualities of sportsmanship in junior tournament play as well as one who maintains the finest traditions of the great sportsmen/women of tennis, past and present.

League Volunteer Award - Judy Utley (Greensboro, N.C.) USTA Southern section’s Judy Utley received the USTA League Volunteer Award for leadership and contributions to the growth and enhancement of USTA Leagues, both in her section and nationally.

National Junior Scholar Athlete - Zoe Howard (Chevy Chase, Md.) and Niraj Komatineni (Mason Ohio) Zoe Howard of Chevy Chase, Md. and Niraj Komatineni of Mason, Ohio were named the recipients of the 2019 USTA National Junior Scholar Athlete Award, honoring high school tennis players who best demonstrate that tennis is the sport of opportunity for education, advancement and character development.

NJTL Chapter of the Year Award - Danbury Grassroots Academy (Danbury, Conn.) Danbury Grassroots Academy was honored with the NJTL Chapter of the Year Award for positively impacting youth through the powerful combination of tennis and education. Since 2006, DGA has offered the local community a free, year round program serving 55-60 under-served kids from ages 8-18.

Outstanding Featured Facility Award - Cary Tennis Park (Cary, N.C.) Cary Tennis Park received the highest USTA Facility honor as it has been named the 2019 Featured Facility. The Cary Tennis Park is one of the 25 winners in the 38th annual USTA Facility Award program, which recognizes excellence in the construction and/or renovation of tennis facilities throughout the country.

President’s Award - Arthur Ashe (posthumously) , Sheridan Snyder, Charlie Pasarell Tennis legends, Arthur Ashe (posthumously), Sheridan Nyder and Charlie Pasarell received the 2019 President’s Award. The award honors an individual who has given unusual and extraordinary service to the sport of tennis in the public’s interest. The three remarkable individuals co-founded NJTL 50 years ago to empower inner city kids through tennis and education.


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