Ted Goodman got his start in tennis at a young age, armed with a wooden racquet and hitting tennis balls with his mother. Now years later, he is helping others start their journey with the sport.
“I have been working with the Love to Learn and Love to Play classes in Gainesville and Alachua County since July 2019,” the longtime USTA League captain shares. “I help the students learn the rules and etiquette they need to play tennis.”
Goodman embraced the role of USTA Tennis Ambassador nearly a year ago, when USTA Florida Adult Play Coordinator Leigh Chak approached him to be a volunteer for the new programs in her region.
“When I needed volunteers for the new programs in Alachua county, I first contacted our local league captains,” Chak says. “Ted has been a captain in our leagues for years and signed up right away to promote tennis to new players.”
For Chak, Goodman has always been a reliable volunteer. He commits a lot of time and energy to tennis and Chak admires his willingness to share his love of the game by managing teams, volunteering with new programs and helping on the court at club events.
“He loves tennis and it shows when he is interacting with new people,” Chak adds.
Goodman is known for being friendly, fair and knowledgeable both on and off the court. Chak says Goodman’s enthusiasm to grow the game of tennis has spurred an increase in adult beginner program volunteers at the club where Goodman plays and volunteers, Joyce Oransky Tennis Center (Westside Park) in Gainesville.
“Ted makes himself available for all practice sessions and communicates with participants with enthusiasm and approachability,” she explains. “He is able to make new players feel comfortable as they tackle new skills.”
His rapid success in his new role as a USTA Tennis Ambassador has led Goodman to be a mentor for other passionate tennis players hoping to volunteer. He now teaches new USTA Tennis Ambassadors everything they need to know about the Love to Learn and Love to Play programs, to get them motivated to continue promoting tennis play.
“I am so pleased to be able to support USTA Florida’s efforts to grow tennis in Gainesville and help people learn this incredible game,” says Goodman. “I get to share my passion and enthusiasm for the sport and just maybe influence a few students to become life-long members of the tennis community.”
USTA Florida thanks Ted Goodman for his dedication to the game and for his commitment to helping beginner tennis players in Alachua county.
Birthplace: Ahoskie, North Carolina
Family: Wife Danusia, sons Daniel & Steven, Mother, Father, sister Jamie, grandson William
Favorite Movie: Forrest Gump
Favorite Food: North Carolina BBQ
Favorite Travel Spot: Colorado’s Rocky Mountains
Favorite Shot: Topspin forehand
My earliest tennis memory was… “Hitting tennis balls with my Mother when I was maybe 7 or 8 years old using wooden racquets.”
If I could play tennis with three people, they would be… “Rafael Nadal, Andy Roddick, John McEnroe.”
When I am not playing tennis I am… “Counting the minutes until the next time I can get on a tennis court with my friends and teammates.”
My best tennis memory is… “Attending the 2011 Miami Open and watching Novak Djokovic vs. Marty Fish, hanging out on the grounds and immersing ourselves in the tennis aura.”
I like to volunteer in tennis because… “I enjoy teaching people and sharing my love and enthusiasm for the game.”
Interested in volunteering in tennis? Visit www.USTAFlorida.com/Volunteers to learn more about available opportunities.