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Chicago Tennis Hall of Fame

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SAG_IMAG1141_Nov_2013Inducted 2014 Sylvia Gothard’s tennis career in the US began in 1969 when Dave Muir offered her an opportunity to teach at South Side Racquet Club in Dolton. Since then, she has been  involved in growing programs and activities within the Chicago District. In 1973, she managed the Park Forest Racquet Club and from 1976 – 1991 was Tennis Director at Ravisloe Country Club. 1977 on Sylvia has been running programs, creating special tennis events, organizing fundraisers and hosting National, Midwest and District tournaments at the H-F Racquet & Fitness Club.  With her leadership, the facility has won numerous awards including USTA/Midwest Section Organization of the Year Award 2001,  USTA/National Organization of the Year Award for 1988 and 2001; USTA/NRPA Excellence in Tennis Programming Award 2003; CDTA Facility of the Year 2000, 2008, 2011 and as a facility of the HF Park District, the NRPA Gold Medal Award for 1991 and 2006. As a supporter of USTA 10 and under tennis, she made sure that HFRFC was the first to add blended lines for 36’ and 60’ play to not only outdoor courts but four indoor courts. A USPTA Master Professional, USTA Life Member, and USTA Certified Referee and ITF White Badge Referee, she is a mentor for so many in the tennis field. She personally has been awarded: USPTA Illinois State Professional of the Year – twice, Chicago District Tournament Director of the Year - four times, Chicago Southland Aldo DeAngelis Award for Leadership and Vision on behalf of tourism in the Chicago Southland, USPTA/Midwest Nancy Mickler Award - three times, USPTA 40 year service award, USTA/Midwest 20 year service award, inducted into the USPTA Hall of Fame – Midwest Division in 1996, received the Billie Jean King Lifetime Achievement Award in 2006, two resolutions from the Homewood-Flossmoor Park District honoring her accomplishments in 1996 and 2007, Certificate of Recognition from the State of Illinois – Office of the Comptroller Judy Baar Topinka for 35 years of Service with the HF Park District and Racquet Club in 2012. Volunteer services include: USTA/Chicago District Tennis Association board member and past president, Northern Illinois Professional Tennis Association past president, USTA/Midwest Communications Committee Chairperson, USTA/Midwest Information Technology committee member and chairperson, USTA/Midwest Tennis Industry Committee member. Sylvia has hosted a Wimbledon trip for 23 years including tickets to Wimbledon and  play on grass courts at various English clubs.  To date over 375 people have shared her passion for her sport and her country. She is the creator of the HF Park District Tennisfest.  This 10-day festival started in 1988 with a 41 event tournament and free clinics and had approximately 200 participants. In 2013, its 26th year, Tennisfest, presented by “Land O’Frost” had grown to a 12 day, 55-event tournament with free clinics & lessons, pet contest, members and their other passions exhibit, fundraising book sale, free opening picnic with DJ and an award celebration with BBQ finale. Also included, the “Little Mo” Regional Tournament for juniors 11 and under, 36’ & 60” court events and the Chicago District USTA Junior Team Tennis District Championships. Total attendance approximately 2,500! Sylvia is also a player and is a former English County Champion, Insurance Offices of Great Britain Champion and former National, Midwest and Chicago District Ranked player. “I have been blessed to meet so many who have inspired and encouraged. Thank you to all who have been with me on this journey. This honor is for all”.


 

JonVegosenPhotoInducted 2014 During Jon’s Presidency, the USTA implemented its largest tennis initiative – Ten and Under Tennis – to “kid-size” tennis.  Jon calls tennis “The Sport of Opportunity.”  His vision has been to promote and develop the growth of people through tennis – through education and mentoring, diversity and inclusion, and making tennis affordable and accessible.  Jon oversaw two of the most successful US Opens and the unveiling of a strategic vision to revamp the USTA Billie Jean King National Tennis Center.  He began a new tradition, the passing of the Continuity of Leadership Plaque from the President to the First Vice President.  He also created the US Open Sportsmanship Award and the USTA Disaster Relief Fund.  Jon has well advocated curbing the dropping of varsity college tennis programs. In 2006, Jon became a Vice President of the USTA/Midwest Section and the Midwest Youth Tennis & Education Foundation (MYTEF).  Jon served on the Junior Competition and Bylaws Committees and as Chairman of the Delegates-at-Large.  He successfully led two Section “Think Tanks.”  He has freely shared his expertise in employment law and intellectual property to benefit the Section.  Jon has played a significant role raising funds for the Section’s Hall of Fame Charity Gala to benefit MYTEF, serving as Gala Committee Chair or Honorary Chair for several years. Jon began volunteering for the Chicago District Tennis Association (CDTA) in 1994.  He was on the Board for over a decade, including a term as President in 2001 and 2002.  He also served on the Chicago Tennis Patrons Board.  Jon was Chair of the Junior Development Committee for several years and served a term as Chair of the Nominating Committee.  Among other things, Jon developed and implemented a strategic plan for the CDTA; wrote the Parent Guide for Competitive Junior Tennis; created a sportsmanship video; and instituted a junior mentoring program.  The Vegosen family created and has endowed the Chicago Tennis Patrons Coach of the Year Award.  In honor of his mentor Max Davidson, Jon conceived, raised funds for, and oversaw the creation of two tennis centers for JCYS, a Chicago area social service agency.  The centers feature tennis programming for underserved youth and individuals with disabilities.  In recognition of Jon’s contributions, JCYS elected him a Director for Life of JCYS.  In 2013, JCYS honored Jon as its “Man of the Year” and named its “Champ Camp” for him. Jon captained Northwestern University’s varsity tennis team in 1972-1973 and was selected to the All Big-Ten Conference Team in 1973.  Jon has been inducted into the following Halls of Fame:  the USTA/Midwest Section (2013), the Intercollegiate Tennis Association (2012), and Northwestern University Athletics (2011).  In 2004, the Vegosen family was the USTA Ralph Westcott Family of the Year after having been the Family of the Year of the CDTA and the Section.  Jon received the Section’s Stanley Malless Award in 2003 and the CDTA Volunteer of the Year Award in 2002.  In 1994, he was the #1 ranked Men’s 45s singles player in the Section.


 

steve_butzlaff Inducted 2013 Stephen Butzlaff began serving a two-year term as USTA Delegate and Immediate Past President of the USTA/Midwest Section in December 2011. He previously served as President, and was originally elected to his first Board position in 2005. Under his board leadership, the Section drove the Green Dot transition ball competitive play format, Ace Junior Tennis Club, Best Driveway Tennis Contest, led the country in new 10U memberships, and introduced ACE the Section Mascot. Butzlaff currently serves as Board Liaison to the Section’s Junior Team Tennis Committee. In addition, he serves on the Section’s Investment, Hall of Fame, and Nomination Committee. Between 2005 and 2007, Butzlaff served as Midwest Treasurer, and during the term converted operating system and reporting techniques. He previously served as Liaison to the Tennis Service Representatives, as well as College On Campus, and Adult League Committee, He has served as a member on the Audit, Human Resource, Budget, Strategic Planning and Chair of the Marketing Committee.  Also, Butzlaff served as President of the Midwest Youth Tennis & Education Foundation. He is currently a member on its Building Management, Budget, and Investment Committee. He previously served on its Operations, Nomination, Budget and Capital Campaign Committee.  Steve served as the Chicago District President 2003-2004, and has been active with numerous District committees since 1998. He also served on the Chicago Tennis Patron Board for eight years redeveloping the organization and instituting effective fund raising strategies.  At the USTA level, Butzlaff is serving his first term as Adult Council Chair and member of the Advisory Group on Committees. He served on the USTA Board Budget Committee, was Vice-Chairman of the Section Presidents, and served on the USTA National Community Tennis Association (CTA), Membership and Marketing Committee. In 2003, he served on the TDM task force assisting in the creation and Beta testing of the software. Butzlaff co-founded the Shoreline Tennis Association CTA located in Waukegan, Ill., in 1998 with the mission to provide free tennis instruction, equipment, educational skills and High School placement at St. Martin de Porres, (affiliated Christo Rey School). The CTA has built two tennis courts, both with donated dollars from government, foundations, corporations and private contributions. The program to date has introduced over 1,400 students under the age of 16 to tennis without incurring any salary or administration costs. Butzlaff and his family have served as Shoreline advisors and instructors since its founding. Players such as Tracy Austin and Evan King have participated in its Block Parties. In 2008, "Tennis in the Trunk" was formed in partnership with Midtown Athletic Club in Bannockburn to provide tennis to young Hispanics in Highwood, Ill. The program featured the QuickStart Tennis format, which is organized on a parking lot adjacent to an apartment complex.  The Butzlaff family was awarded the Steve Morgan Family of the Year Award by the Chicago Tennis Patrons in 1999, and Steve was awarded the Paul Dean Volunteer of the Year Award by the Chicago Tennis Patrons in 2001.

 

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Inducted 2012  Billy Martin Inducted into the ITA Tennis Hall of Fame in 1996 and the USTA/Midwest Section Hall of Fame in 2009, Billy Martin’s playing career is full of highlights. To this very day he is still regarded as one of the best junior players in the history of the sport. Billy Martin grew up in the Chicago area and won the USTA National Championships for Boys 12s, 14s, 16s and 18s. He also won the Illinois High School State Singles Championship in 1971, his freshman year. Billy captured the 1973 and 1974 singles titles at Junior Wimbledon, the Junior US Open and Junior Orange Bowl tournaments. Inside Tennis Magazine ran an article that named him “Junior Player of the Century”. As a UCLA freshman, he guided the 1975 team to one of its best seasons, posting a perfect 19-0 dual-match record en route to an NCAA team championship. After capturing the 1975 NCAA singles championship, Martin competed on the ATP tour as a professional and reached a career high singles ranking of No. 32. He reached the Wimbledon singles quarterfinals in 1977 and was selected Rookie of the Year in his first professional season. Martin served as assistant coach at UCLA for 10 years, and head coach for the past 18 years. He was named the Intercollegiate National Coach of the Year in 1996. Billy Martin led UCLA to the school’s 16th NCAA men’s tennis title in 2005. During his 18 seasons as head coach, his team finished every year in the top five at the NCAA Championships.


 

John Shostrom 1938Tolly ShostromInducted 2012

John (left) and Charles (Tolly) (right) Shostrom attended Parker High School and were major figures in Chicago tennis for many decades as players, umpires, tournament directors, administrators and volunteers. John was the perennial top-ranked Chicago player as a junior, winning three straight Illinois High School singles titles (1932-34) as well as four University of Chicago tournament high school championships (1931-34). He led the dominant University of Chicago teams of the late 1930’s, and as a senior in 1938, John played at #1 on the UC team that won all nine divisions in the Big Ten tournament, and lost only one individual match all year. After college while playing the tournament circuit, he reached the top 25 in singles and top 7 in doubles, winning three consecutive Western Championships with three different partners. In 1938, John beat soon-to-be Grand Slam winner Donald Budge in an exhibition in Chicago, and in doubles that year won several tournaments with Bobby Riggs. At the National Clay Courts held at his home club in River Forest, he served as tennis director, head referee and head of umpiring. John was active in Chicago District Tennis Association affairs in the 1960’s, serving as a Director for many years and heading the Junior Development Committee with his wife, Mary. Charles (Tolly) Shostrom was the Illinois State High School doubles champion in 1933, and singles finalist in 1935. He was also a member of the University of Chicago championship teams of the late 1930’s, playing #5 singles and #3 doubles on the great team of 1938. Tolly defeated  Bobby Riggs in the Chicago Championships in 1939 when Riggs was the best amateur in the world. As a volunteer for the Chicago District Tennis Association, Tolly was a Director for many years and served as President in 1967-68. The Shostrom Family received the first CDTA and Western Family of the Year Awards in 1965,   repeating as WTA Family of the Year in 1966, and was nominated for the National Family of the Year. John died in 1997, and Tolly in 1999, both at age 81. Since 1999, the Shostrom Family has been the sponsor of the CDTA Shostrom Family Award for the Male League Player of the Year. 

 
patterson for webInducted 2011  Tom Patterson has had a sustained impact on tennis at all levels. For decades he has played an important and continuing role in Chicago tennis, volunteering with many different tennis organizations and serving on multiple tennis organization Boards. Tom served for over 10 years on the CDTA Board, and was named President in 1997-1998. He also served as President of the Chicago Tennis Patrons in 2001-2002, and currently sits on the Board of the Patrons and Love To Serve, Inc. At the Midwest Section level, Tom received a 20 year Volunteer Service Award in 2011. He acted as Chair of numerous Midwest committees, helped develop the Midwest Tennis Volunteer Corp and succeeded in adapting the on-line Committee Appointment Process (CAPS). Tom served on the National USTA Membership Committee and is currently appointed to the National Awards Committee. As a certified USTA Official, Tom was a trainer for USTA Officials locally, umpired at 23 US Open tournaments, served as Chief Umpire of World Team Tennis, and Referee for the Nuveen Professional Tennis Tour. In 1990, Tom received the Midwest Frank Dowling Award, and in 1996 received the CDTA/CTP Tennis Official of the Year Award. Tom is an exemplar of the person who contributes greatly to the game across the broadest possible range. He has improved the play of individuals, the experience of the tennis audience, improved the dignity, integrity and guarded the great traditions of the game. Tom has broadened the appeal of the game to young kids who might never have walked on a court.

 
Chris Scott_Inducted 2011 Chris Scott was known as one of the finest representatives of tennis in Chicago, and the epitome of a true sportsman. As a USPTA certified tennis professional, for over twenty years he promoted tennis on the South Side of Chicago where he developed young players into national champions. Chris coached the University of Chicago men's varsity team for 14 years, the women's varsity team for 3 years, and in 1975 received the College Coach of the Year Award. He was a member of numerous boards including the Chicago District Tennis Association, American Tennis Association, National College Scholarship for Minority Athletes, and a consultant to the USTA National Summer Youth Sport Program. In 1978 Chris received the US Open Tennis Community Service Award. For years he acted as tournament director of the Tuley Park Tournaments, was active in the well known Tri-City Tournament and host of numerous ATA local, regional, and national events. As a senior player, Chris was a National Public Parks Sr. Singles Champion, National ATA Sr. Singles, Doubles and Mixed Doubles Champion, and a Quarter-Finalist at the US Open in the Sr. Veterans division. His on-court play expanded into basketball also where he was an All-American player at Wayne State University and played with the world-famous Harlem Globetrotters. Christopher C. Scott Sr. passed on October 16, 1989, and in 1990 the Tuley Park Open became the Chris Scott Memorial Tournament.

 

Mary SeeligInducted 2010.  Mary Seelig has been affiliated with the Chicago District for many years. She had volunteered in many capacities with four different organizations from administrative work to tournament directing. Mary has touched the lives of a great number of junior tournament players being affectionately called the "Gummy Bear Lady" by many who have gone on to receive high school, collegiate and national tennis honors. With the Chicago District Tennis Association, Mary was a member of the Board of Directors from 1993-2009, gave time on various committees including the Qualifier and Junior Competition, worked as a tournament director for local and Midwest events, and acted as the Head of Endorsers for the District. The Chicago Tennis Patrons included Mary on the Board of Directors from 1995-2009. Mary has been a volunteer with the Midwest Section since 1996, including many years with the Junior Competition and Tournament Approval & Scheduling committees. In 2006 she received a 10-year Volunteer Pin from the USTA/Midwest Section. Mary has been a tennis Official since 1965, becoming certified as an Official and Referee when certification was established in 1972. She has officiated at amateur local (CDTA), Midwest (Western) and National junior events. Mary officiated on the Pro Circuit with the Virginia Slims, Women's Avon Circuit, Men's Volvo Circuit, and at the US Open in 1979 and 1981. Mary's many awards include Chicago Professional Tennis Umpires Association Crew of the Year in 1976 and 1977, and three-time CDTA Tournament Director of the Year in 1983, 1991, and 1995. In 1996 a CDTA/Patrons Award was re-named the Mary Seelig Award for Tournament Director of the Year in her honor, which continues today. She was also named the Volunteer of the Year in 1994, and in 1996 was presented with a Lifetime Achievement Award.


 

Dave MuirInducted 2010.  Dave Muir is a USPTA Master Professional and has been on the Chicago area coaching scene for over 60 years, and has taught over 10,000 people to play tennis. Dave has coached some of the top teaching pros in the Chicago area today, several national champions, and Illinois High School Champions. During at least one school season, he was the personal coach of the winners of both the Boys' and Girls' Illinois State High School Doubles Championships. Always gracious on and off the court, Dave is noted for his mental and psychological coaching abilities, providing his players with great strategic advice and finding the best way to motivate and inspire them. Dave is a certified high performance coach and holds a Level 1 & 2 USTA Sport Science Certificate. He continues to be an integral part of the local USTA Competition Training Center Program, being a CTC coach for the last 20 years. Dave's many positions include President of the Midwest USPTA 1962-1966, USPTA National Board of Directors 1965-1974, USPTA National President 1970-1972, CDTA Board of Directors 1968-1970, CITA Board of Directors 1970-1976, Tournament Director 1973-1980 including the National USTA Boys' 12 Indoor Championship, and Head Coach of the USTA Competition Training Center at Homewood-Flossmoor from 1988-2009. Dave was inducted into the Midwest Professional Tennis Association Hall of Fame in 1991, and in 2005 was named the CDTA Coach of the Year. Dave is a highly accomplished tournament player, winning 11 National Doubles Championships. In addition to his talents as a coach and a player, he built one of the first indoor tennis clubs in the business, authored a book titled "Congratulations Pro", originated the Pro Penn tennis ball, and has patents on numerous inventions including a revolutionary tennis center strap design. In 1998 the Chicago Tennis Patrons established the Dave Muir Scholarship Fund to honor Dave's years of teaching, coaching, and mentoring others in the game of tennis. Dave has made an impact on tennis in Chicago as well as on each and every one of his pupils, partners, and business associates.


 

Janet FrenchInducted 2010.  Janet French has been an outstanding tennis role model for many people throughout her life and continues to show her love for the sport of tennis. She has played the game at many levels and has encouraged thousands of young and not so young people to participate. Many have learned tennis fundamentals from her and she still continues to lead by example. She knows the sport and displays the highest level of sportsmanship that tennis players should exhibit. Janet has given her time to help others play through her involvement at the local, sectional and national level. She served as the Chicago District Executive Director from 1976-1990 using her experience and knowledge of players, coaches, and facilities to actively promote the game. In addition to her service as Chicago District Executive Director, Janet volunteered her expertise to the USTA/Midwest Section on the Sanction & Scheduling Committee from 1987-1992, and was the Tournament Administration Committee Chair in 1992. She served on the Adult Ranking Committee from 1992-1999, and the Adult/Senior Competition Committee for twenty years from 1989-2009. In 2006 Janet received a USTA/Midwest Section 20-Year Volunteer Service Award and in 2009, received the USTA/Midwest Section's most prestigious award, the Mel Bergman Award for continuous and distinguished service. Janet played in numerous Senior Team Championships, won a bronze ball in the 2003 USTA National Mother/Daughter championships, and has represented the USTA/Midwest Section on the Senior Intersectional Team. Into her seventies she still plays a very competitive game.


 

Mel TimmonsInducted 2009 Mel Timmons a lifelong tennis enthusiast, started in the park system on Chicago's south side. He played #1 singles on his Parker High School team, and 1st singles on his I.I.T. College tennis team. He was captain of both his high school and college teams. Mel joined the Chicago District Tennis Association, and in addition of being a Director, he stood for election in all officer positions and was elected to the post as President of the CDTA in 1991-1992. Mel then turned to the Chicago Tennis Patrons organization which elected him to a term in each Officer position, and elected him three times as President of the Chicago Tennis Patrons, Inc. He was instrumental I the success of the Woodfield Racquet Club (Schaumburg) in the late 70's as Executive Vice-President and later the Pheasant Run Racquet Club (St. Charles) where he was Vice President and General Manager. Mel was also owner and publisher of the "CrossCourt News" for many years, covering tennis and tennis people in all Districts of the Midwest Section. Mel directed the Annual Paddock Tennis Tournament, a grass roots event for over 26 years. This tournament had draws of 860 to a record high 1260 entries over the years in many age divisions. In 1989 he was awarded the Lifetime Achievement Award from the Patrons, which is now called the Billie Jean King Award. In 1987 he received the Fred Burns Award from the Western Tennis Association (Midwest) which recognizes a journalist or newspaper which has contributed the most toward promoting tennis on the local, district, or section level. Mel served on the steering committee that created the Evening of Champions, which is the yearly awards banquet and fundraiser benefiting the Chicago Tennis Patrons. He initiated the concept of award sponsorship which helped defer some of the expenses for the event.


 

George JenningsInducted 2009  George J. Jennings, Jr. was best known for teaching his love of the game of tennis and for his many personal tennis accomplishments on the court. George's playing days were best known for being a multi-year Champion in Men's Singles under the auspices of the United States Lawn Tennis Association National Public Park Championships in 1928, 1929, 1930 and 1931. He was also the Men's Doubles Champion in 1927, 1929, 1930 and 1931. George had direct wins over Bill Tilden and other tennis legends during the days when tennis was only an amateur event. George served in the US Navy and retired as a Captain. After the Navy, George's career centered on the Chicago Public School system, serving as an administrator. In the mid 50's, George started the George Jennings Tennis School at Lake Forest College. The school was primarily a summer-season school that became what we know today as a tennis academy. He was also a tennis professional on the south side in the Beverly area, and one of six professionals on the US Dunlop Racquet Advisory Staff. George's students came from as far as Peoria, but the concentration was from the entire Chicago area. He developed nationally and Western-ranked players from Oak Park, River Forest, Winnetka, Glencoe, Highland Park and Lake Forest. The lessons were drawn around sportsmanship, introducing one-self, remembering names, the value of a smile, as well as keen in-class strategy. George developed Chicago players such as Susan Starrett, Dave and Pete Armstrong, Ellen Levin, Debby Waud, Susie Replogle, Beverly and Harrison Bowes, Bob Maramba, John Hare, and Wimbledon player Sue Eastman. All of these players left a mark as Illinois State High School Champions, Western Champions, and nationally-ranked players. George was very active in the tournament seeding of the Girls 16 National Clay Courts with Helen Shockley, poring over reams of paper in the days of no internet or computer-generated rankings. George also served as Varsity Head Tennis Coach for Lake Forest College in the late 50's until his unexpected death in 1966.


 

Katrina AdamsInducted 2008  Katrina Adams was born and raised in Chicago, Illinois, and competed on the Women's Tennis Association (WTA) Tour for 12 years. She was ranked as high as No. 67 in singles and No. 8 in doubles. Adams captured 20 WTA doubles titles during her career. She is a former member of the WTA Board of Directors. The WTA presented her with the Player Service Award in 1996 and 1997. As a junior player, Adams captured the Illinois State Singles Championship in 1983 and 1984. She also won the American Tennis Association Championship. Adams was named to the All-American Tennis Team in 1986 and 1987 while attending Northwestern University in Evanston, Illinois. Adams was the ITCA Rookie of the Year in 1986. She was the first African-American NCAA Doubles Champion in 1987 with partner Diane Donnelly. In 1998, Adams was inducted into the Northwestern University Hall of Fame, and in 2005, she was inducted into the Midwest Section Hall of Fame. Currently, Adams is serving a second consecutive two-year term as Director at Large on the USTA Board of Directors. She previously served on the USTA Player Development Committee, USTA Executive Committee and USTA Grievance Committee. Adams also serves as a Color Analyst for the Tennis Channel. Upon retiring from the professional tour, she was a USTA National Coach from 1999-2002 for the USA Tennis High Performance program. Adams has given back to the game through grassroots participation in several non-profit organizations that develop tennis players, and is currently the spokesperson for the Althea Gibson Foundation, and the Executive Director for the Harlem Junior Tennis Program in New York.


 

Billie Jean KingInducted 2006 Billie Jean King has left a lasting and indelible mark on the game of tennis. She won a record 20 Wimbledon titles, won the US Open four times, and won titles in the French and Australian Open. She is the only woman to win US singles titles on all 4 surfaces, and one of only 8 players to hold a singles title in each of the Grand Slam events. She was ranked No. 1 in the world five times between 1966 and 1972, and was in the top 10 a total of 17 years. As a coach, Billie Jean led the U.S. squad to four Olympic medals, four Fed Cup titles, and became the first woman to coach a professional team with men when she served as player/coach for the Philadelphia Freedoms of World TeamTennis, which she founded. As one of the most illustrious and celebrated tennis players in history, Billie Jean is recognized for spearheading the women's movement in tennis and for her life-long struggle for women's equality, brought to the world stage when she defeated Bobby Riggs in the Battle of the Sexes in 1973, one of the greatest moments in sports history. In 1990, Life magazine named her one of the "100 Most Important Americans of the 20th Century". In 1994 she ranked No. 5 on Sports Illustrated's "Top 40 Athletes" list for significantly altering or elevating sports in the last four decades. In 1998, Billie Jean became the first athlete to receive the prestigious Elizabeth Blackwell Award, given by Hobart and William Smith College to a woman whose life exemplifies outstanding service to humanity. In February, 1999, she was awarded the Arthur Ashe Award for Courage for her fight to bring equality to women's sports. In 2003 Billie Jean received two of the tennis world's highest honors. She was awarded the Philippe Chatrier Award, the International Tennis Federation's highest honor, recognizing individuals for their contribution to tennis, and was one of six inaugural inductees into the Court of Champions at the USTA National Tennis Center. She is a member of the International Tennis Hall of Fame, the National Women's Hall of Fame, and is the founder of the Women's Tennis Association and the Women's Sports Foundation. Billie Jean remains active in a number of important causes, serving as a director on several boards including the Elton John AIDS Foundation, Women's Sports Foundation, and Billie Jean King WTT Charities. Her place in tennis has certainly been secured as one of the all time greats.


 

Jay KramerInducted 2006  Jay Kramer's involvement in Chicago tennis has been overwhelming in many areas. As a player he lettered at Northwestern and has been nationally ranked in both singles and father/daughter divisions. He was the builder and owner of the Oak Brook Racquet & Fitness Club in 1973, a founder of the Illinois High School Coaches Association, and started the Hinsdale Open Junior Tournament in 1961 which is still running today. Jay, a USPTA certified pro for 46 years, is best known for his coaching ability, having coached several national and world ranked players, and is currently the Hinsdale Central High School Boys Varsity Coach, a position he has held since 1960. He has received many honors in his career, as the National High School Coach of the Year in 1988, National USPTA High School Coach of the Year in 1994, and is in both the Hinsdale Central High School and Illinois High School Coaches Association hall of fame. At Hinsdale Central High School, Jay has amassed the most impressive record in Illinois high school coaching history. His dual meet record is 508 wins, 58 losses, with 7 ties, and went undefeated 8 consecutive years from 1972-79 at 110 consecutive meets. His conference record is 302-9, with 40 titles as Conference Champion, and 43 titles as Sectional Champion. In the most prestigious Illinois High School State Tournament, Jay's teams have earned 13 championship titles, finished 13 times as runner-up, and have 8 third place and 4 fourth place finishes.


 

Alan G. Schwartz Inducted 2005 Alan Schwartz served as President and Chairman of the Board of the USTA 2003-2004, and was a USTA board member for twelve years. During his presidency, the US Open Series became a reality and relationships between the USTA and other tennis entities were dramatically improved. Other tennis board positions held include: Chicago District Tennis Association, Chicago Tennis Patrons, Tennis Industry Association, National Indoor Tennis Association, USTA Tennis & Education Foundation, International Tennis Hall of Fame and International Tennis Federation. Schwartz was inducted into the Club Industry Hall of Fame in 1987 and selected Tennis Industry Magazine “Man of the Year” in 2003. He founded and is Chairman of the Tennis Corporation of America (TCA), the largest owner and operator of indoor tennis facilities in North America. He co-authored the National Tennis Rating Program (NTRP) and authored the USTA mission statement “To Promote and Develop the Growth of Tennis”. As a player, Schwartz held national rankings as both a junior and senior player, captained his team at Yale, won seven state titles, eight national titles and two gold and one silver in the Maccabiah Games.


 

Marian BairdInducted 2004  Marian Baird won the Girls’ 18 Indoor Doubles and the Women’s Intercollegiate Doubles Championships. She attained a number one district and sectional ranking in women’s doubles. She won the National Indoor Championships and earned a high ranking of number two in the USTA in Women’s 75 Doubles. Baird, who was a Western Tennis Association president, was involved in the Chicago District Tennis Association for nearly 20 years. A member of several USTA Committees, Baird is also responsible for establishing the system for endorsing boys and girls from the Western Section to the USTA National Championships. She served the USTA for more than 35 years as a member of a dozen committees including junior and senior ranking coordinator.


 

George E. BarnesInducted 2004 George E. Barnes served as the president of the USTA, the National Educational Tennis Foundation, the Chicago Tennis Patrons, and was a board member of the International Tennis Hall of Fame. During his presidency, he initiated the USTA membership program, the age classification was changed from under-15 and under-18 to 10, 12, 14, 16 and 18-and-under divisions, and the Federation Cup. Originally from River Forest, Illinois, Barnes received the Chicago Press Club’s 1961 Sportsman of the Year Award and served as the chairperson of the George Barnes Family Tennis Center of San Diego, CA.


 

 

Gene BuwickInducted 2004 Gene Buwick served as a USTA volunteer for many years. He was chairman of the USTA Tennis Manufacturers Committee, served on various committees, and played a key role in the development of the USA League Tennis program. Buwick served as president of the Tennis Industry Association for six years, and was a member of the board of directors for 20 years. Buwick also served on the board of trustees for the Sporting Goods Manufacturing Association. Buwick was captain of the USTA team at the 1959 Pan American Games. He competed as a junior in USTA National Championships, was a member of the Chicago District Tennis Association Junior Davis Cup team in 1947 and 1948, and played collegiate tennis at the University of Illinois in Champaign where he also served as captain. A member of the Wilson Sporting Goods Company Hall of Fame, Buwick served two years on the Chicago District Tennis Association Board of Directors during the mid-1970s. He also founded the Glen Briar (Illinois) Tennis Association.


 

Joseph CarricoInducted 2004 Joseph E Carrico, a lifelong tennis enthusiast, was president of the Western Tennis Association and the USTA. He was the U.S. representative on the Governing Board of the International Tennis Federation for six years and served as the Chairman of the U.S. Davis Cup Committee for five years. Carrico served as a Director of the Chicago District Tennis Association and President of the Chicago Tennis Patrons Association. He was also a Vice President of the Northeastern Ohio Tennis Association before relocating to Chicago where he worked for Arthur Anderson and Company.


 

Pat FreebodyInducted 2004  Patricia Freebody has been a USTA/Midwest Section volunteer for nearly 30 years. She is currently the USTA Managing Director for Player and Community Development overseeing the competitive player and recreational player departments. Freebody served as executive director of the USTA/Midwest Section from 1993-1996. In addition, she served as president of the USTA/Midwest Section from 1987-1989, served on numerous USTA committees, and was elected the first woman president of the Chicago District Tennis Association. Freebody received the USTA/Midwest Section Mel Bergman Award in 1989 and is also a recipient of the USTA/Midwest Section Stanley Malless Award. At the USTA level Freebody received the USTA Hall of Fame Merit Award. In addition to her involvement with the USTA and USTA/Midwest Section, Freebody was president of World TeamTennis from 1989-1992 and general manager of Mid-Town Tennis Club in Chicago from 1980-1988.


 

Grant GoldenInducted 2004 Grant Golden was twice ranked number 10 in singles in the United States, and as high as number two in doubles. Golden represented the United States as a member of the U.S. team at the Pan American Games (two bronze medals), the Maccabiah Games (three gold medals) and the 1957 Davis Cup. He was a three-time champion at the USTA Men’s Indoor Doubles Championships and at the USTA Clay Court Doubles Championships. He won the Illinois State Singles Championship 13 times, the Western Indoor Singles Championship 10 consecutive times, and a Pan American Singles Tournament. While at Northwestern University, he was a Big Ten singles and doubles champion and was named an all-American. He coached the Chicago Davis Cup Team for nine years leading it to six titles. He founded Excellence, Super-Excellence and Youth Action in Chicago. He served on the board and as president of the Chicago District Tennis Association and CDTA Patrons Association.


 

Seymour GreenbergInducted 2004 Seymour Greenberg as a junior,  from Highland Park, IL., won the Western Boys’ 15 and Under title and was runner-up in the National 15s at Culver Military Academy. At Northwestern University he was the Big Ten Singles champion in 1940 and 1941 and the doubles champion from 1940 through 1942. Greenberg won the National Public Parks Championship, National Clay Court titles, nine Illinois State Championships, and numerous city of Chicago titles. Following his playing days, he served as an instructor in the Chicago Junior Boys’ Super Excellence program.


 

Andrea JaegerInducted 2004 Andrea Jaeger, Chicago native,  won a total of 11 U.S. junior national titles including the 1979 U.S. Girls’ 18 Clay Courts when she was only 14. In 1980 she became the youngest player ever to be seeded at Wimbledon, a distinction she held for a decade. She was ranked in the top ten for four years including number two in 1981. She was a finalist at the French Open in 1982 and at Wimbledon in 1983. She was a semifinalist at the U.S. Open in 1980 and 1982 and at Wimbledon in 1981 and 1983. She represented the United States on both the U.S. Federation Cup Team and the U.S. Wightman Cup Team. After seven shoulder surgeries, she retired from competitive tennis and founded the Kids’ Stuff Foundation.


 

George LottInducted 2004 George Lott, from Chicago, was the first Western player to win the National Doubles title at Brookline in 1928 teaming with John Hennessey of Indianapolis. He won the U.S. doubles championship five times, the indoor doubles title two times, the clay court and Western doubles and the National Mixed Doubles three times. In addition he won men’s doubles at Wimbledon, Paris and Toronto. He was a six-time member of the U.S. Davis Cup team and was ranked in the top ten eight times including number two in 1931. Lott is a member of the International Tennis Hall of Fame.


 

Frank ParkerInducted 2004 Frank Parker, from Evanston, Ill., was the first Western player to win the National Singles Championship at Forest Hills in 1944 and again in 1945 while serving in the armed forces. He won the National Clay Court title five times, the National Indoor singles and doubles, the Western singles and was on the U.S. Davis Cup team for four years. He was ranked number one twice and he was in the top ten 17 times. Parker is also a member of the International Tennis Hall of Fame.


 

Marty RiessenInducted 2004 Marty Riessen, from Chicago, won 60 professional doubles titles and was a finalist in 40 other finals. He won seven Grand Slam mixed doubles and two Grand Slam men’s doubles championships and is the owner of nine career singles titles. Ten times Riessen was ranked in the top 10 in the U.S. including number three in 1970 and 1971. A Western singles and doubles champion, Riessen won the National Doubles title once, the National Mixed Doubles championship four times, the National Clay Court doubles title four times and played on six U.S. Davis Cup teams. He served as coach of the U.S. Federation Cup Team, the U.S. Wightman Cup Team and was a two-time U.S. Women’s Olympic Tennis Team Coach.


 

Helen ShockleyInducted 2004  Helen Shockley won the National Girls’ 18 Singles Title in 1932 and was ranked number one in the United States in Girls’ 18s. She also won the Canadian National Junior Championship. A 1937 graduate of the Northwestern University School of Music, Shockley later became known as Chicago’s “First Lady of Tennis.” She organized events in the Chicago area for more than 40 years. Shockley is also responsible for the feed-in consolation that she developed and introduced in 1962; she also developed the Chicago Junior Excellence Programs. Shockley served as the Executive Director of the Chicago District Tennis Association and on several United States Tennis Association committees.


 

James StewartInducted 2004  James Stewart, from Chicago, served as president of the Western Tennis Association for nine years (1922-28). He was responsible for the development and growth of tennis in the Western section during the 1920s. That era brought great players to tournaments in Detroit, Chicago, Indianapolis and Cincinnati. During his presidency, Western conceived and hosted the first U.S. Intersectional Team Championships, obtained three Kentucky counties changing the Southern Ohio District to the Ohio Valley District, hosted the first USLTA meeting held west of Philadelphia, and hosted first Davis Cup tie involving a U.S. team ever held in Western territory.


 
 


 
 
 
 
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