June 11th, 2015
Tennis Briefs(3): UF College Spotlight, USTA Florida Foundation Grants, More
Holly Hill, Melbourne, Miami, Perry, Tallahassee, Wilton Manors Organizations Receive Approximately $10,000 in Community Tennis Grants from USTA Florida Foundation
Community tennis organizations throughout the state of Florida received approximately $10,000 in community tennis grants in the month of May from the USTA Florida Foundation, the charitable arm of the United States Tennis Association-Florida Section (USTA Florida).
Recipients of grants were organizations in Holly Hill (Daytona Beach area), Melbourne, Miami, Perry (located east of Tallahassee), Tallahassee and Wilton Manors (north of Ft. Lauderdale).
USTA Florida Foundation grants offer funding for youth tennis programs, adaptive tennis programs for those with special needs, community tennis programs in economically challenged areas, along with facility assistance in the renovation, refurbishment and building of quality public tennis facilities.
“It is my hope and dream that one or more of our children will remain passionate about tennis throughout high school, college, and maybe beyond,” said Kevin Bochenek of Kids in Distress, a grant recipient in Wilton Manors providing school and after-school play opportunities for at-risk children. “This award will definitely help us to continue our ‘Tennis Tuesday’ program. I humbly thank your organization for supporting our tennis efforts with our children.”
Since 2010, USTA Florida and the USTA Florida Foundation have awarded more than $1,000,000 in grants for tennis programs serving people of all ages and abilities throughout Florida.
USTA Florida Foundation grants in May:
Holly Hill, Fla. — Holly Hill Family YMCA
Grant: For program support and adding a second Kids Tennis Club session per week
Melbourne, Fla. — Tennis by Pat
Grant: For tennis equipment for starting a Kids Tennis Club at Viera Regional Park to complement summer camp and after-school programs
Miami, Fla. — City of Miami Parks and Recreation
Grant: For tennis equipment for youth tennis, including the After School Kids Club including services for socially- and economically-challenged youth
Perry, Fla. — Boys and Girls Club of Taylor County
Grant: To introduce home-schooled students in the area to entry-level tennis using age-appropriate equipment
Tallahassee, Fla. — Finished Sports Academy, LLC
Grant: For tennis equipment for the AIM High-Tennis Play Days program
Tallahassee, Fla. — Gilchrist Elementary School
Grant: For tennis equipment for Gilchrist Elementary School physical education classes
Wilton Manors, Fla. — Kids in Distress
Grant: Equipment for “Tennis Tuesday,” providing school and after-school play opportunities
The USTA Florida Foundation’s mission is “Changing Lives Through Tennis,” providing financial support through organizational grants that help Floridians of all ages and abilities improve their health and quality of life through the game of tennis. It is the USTA Florida Foundation’s belief that tennis provides opportunities for healthy social, emotional, physical and educational development, and encourages peer and family participation.
For more information on individual grants or for more information on the USTA Florida Foundation go to www.ustafloridafoundation.com.
College Tennis Spotlight: UF’s Austin, Keegan Double Trouble
By Colette Lewis, USTA Florida junior/college writer, www.zootennis.com
The University of Florida’s Brooke Austin and Kourtney Keegan had an outstanding run last month in the doubles tournament at the NCAA Division I Individual Championships, hosted by Baylor University in Waco, Texas.
Keegan, a sophomore from Roswell, Georgia, and Austin, a freshman from Indianapolis, were seeded in the 5-8 block, but defeated No. 2 seeds Taylor Davidson and Carol Zhao of Stanford in the quarterfinals. Their memorable season ended in the next round, with a 3-6, 6-4, 6-4 loss to Cal’s Klara Fabikova and Zsofi Susanyi, also seeded 5-8.
Keegan was an accomplished doubles player in her freshman year, finishing the 2013-14 season in the Top 30 of the Intercollegiate Tennis Association’s national rankings. When Coach Roland Thornqvist tried pairing her with Austin last fall, the partnership clicked immediately, with Austin and Keegan winning the ITA Southeast Regional Championships.
They continued to post victories throughout the dual match season, going 16-2 at No. 1 doubles to end the 2014-15 season with an overall record of 25-4 and the ITA’s No. 3 national ranking.
“I do really well because of Kourtney,” said Austin, who was named the SEC’s Freshman of the Year and Player of the Year, as well as the ITA’s National Rookie of the Year. “Kourtney and I mesh very well and she keeps me very calm, while I get her a little fired up.”
“College doubles is way different than junior doubles,” continued Austin, the nation’s top recruit in the Class of 2014 according to the Tennis Recruiting Network. “Everyone says that, and I didn’t have a clue what to expect until I went out there. And they were right. It is completely different. You have to cross a lot more, be more aggressive; you can’t be passive, you have to go out there and be fearless.”
Jacksonville’s Rehm Named President of USTA Florida Foundation Board
The USTA Florida Foundation, the charitable arm of the USTA Florida Section, has announced the election of Celia Rehm as the new foundation president of the organization’s board of directors.
Rehm will lead the board in its mission of “Changing Lives Through Tennis,” providing financial support through organizational grants that help Floridians of all ages improve their health and quality of life through the game of tennis.
A long-time resident of Jacksonville, Fla., Rehm is a former president of the USTA Florida Section and the founder or co-founder of two USTA Community Tennis Associations in Jacksonville — the First Coast Tennis Foundation, and the Jax Youth Tennis Foundation, of which she is president.
The USTA Florida Foundation Board of Directors is comprised of Rehm; Judy Foster, treasurer; Connor Montana, secretary; and directors Donn Davis, Karen MacFarland, and Jean Mills.
“Our USTA Florida Foundation Board is made up of an outstanding group of qualified and experienced leaders, and I am humbled by your trust and confidence in me,” Rehm said in a message to the USTA Florida Foundation Board of Directors. “The commitment and dedicated effort to the work of the Foundation that I see among all board members and our executive director is not only inspirational, it is also very exciting and energizing.”
Also new to the board is Mills, a past USTA Florida Section president and current tennis director at the Spa and Tennis at Polo Club in West Palm Beach, Fla. Montana is also newly-elected to the secretary position.
It is the USTA Florida Foundation’s belief that tennis provides opportunities for healthy social, emotional, physical and educational development, and encourages peer and family participation.
“We are extremely fortunate to have Celia as our new president for the Foundation,” says USTA Florida Foundation Executive Director Linda Curtis. “Her dedication and passion for our mission will be the driving force as she leads the Foundation to new heights in the next few years.”
USTA Florida Foundation grants offer funding for youth tennis programs, adaptive tennis programs for those with special needs, community tennis programs in economically-challenged areas, along with facility assistance in the renovation, refurbishment and building of quality public tennis facilities. Since 2010, USTA Florida and the USTA Florida Foundation have awarded more than $1,000,000 in grants for tennis programs serving people of all ages and abilities throughout Florida.
To learn more about USTA Florida Foundation grants go to www.ustafloridafoundation.com/sharethelove.