November 10th, 2016

Tennis Briefs(3): USTA Florida Historic Board Leadership Change; More

General News Adult Tennis News Junior Team Tennis

USTA Florida Volunteer Board Makes Historic Leadership Change for 2017-18


The 2017-18 USTA Florida Board of Directors

A move to a new headquarters in Orlando next to the USTA National Campus in 2017 will coincide with another historic change for the Florida Section of the United States Tennis Association.

The not-for-profit volunteer organization will eliminate its executive committee and streamline its board of directors to form one sole governing body to set the policies and direction of the association moving forward.

“As the executive director of USTA Florida, one of the things I am most proud of with our association is the volunteer leadership being open to adapting to the changing world we live in,” Doug Booth said. “This was never more evident than when the outgoing USTA Florida Board of Directors voted to eliminate our traditional executive committee of seven people, and a board of 15, to one governing board of nine individuals. This will allow more timeliness and efficiency in decision making to provide better strategic oversight of the association.”

Robert Hollis, the incoming USTA Florida volunteer president, says the new board and senior staff are in the process of honing the strategic priorities for the coming years. He says streamlining some of the current committee structures while focusing on more local community volunteering will also allow the association to make greater headway for tennis growth at the grassroots level.

“We are really excited about the next two years for our Florida Section,” Hollis says. “I feel we have assembled a great group with very diverse fields of expertise. We will be using our board members’ knowledge and experiences to lead us toward achieving our strategic goals.”

The new nine-member USTA Florida Board of Directors will take office in November 2016 at the USTA Florida Annual Meeting & Volunteer Appreciation Weekend in Orlando to begin a two-year term.

The volunteer board will be comprised of the incoming President Hollis who resides in Winter Haven, Vice President Clark Higgs of Clearwater, Treasurer Terri Florio of Jacksonville, Secretary Phil Girardi of St. Petersburg, Section Delegate Nancy Horowitz of Pembroke Pines, and Directors at Large Dana Andrews of Tampa, Scott Colebourne of Fernandina Beach, Chuck Gill of Wellington, and Marcelo Gouts of Orlando.

“As I told the new board at our orientation, ‘I expect us to be engaged and to take ownership in every aspect of what we do,'” Hollis added. “It is going to be exciting and fun work.”

For more info or full bios on the new USTA Florida Board of Directors, go to

Jacksonville Junior Team Tennis League Wraps Fall 

The 18-Intermediate division winners from St. Johns Tennis Academy

The 18-Intermediate division winners from St. Johns Tennis Academy

USTA Florida’s Junior Team Tennis league in Jacksonville ended its fall season with 24 teams and a total of 86 players between girls and boys who participated in the weekend event hosted at the Southside Tennis Center and Boone Park on Oct. 29-30, 2016.

The league featured divisions for boys’ and girls’ 8U, 10U, 12U, 14U and 18U in beginner, intermediate and advanced levels. Participants played on compatible teams of similar age and ability, with new formats introduced in 2016 for greater flexibility and more fun.

“We had a very successful first season after many years in Jacksonville with lots of kids enjoying some competition and fun with their friends,” says USTA Florida Tennis Program Coordinator Molly Zimmer. “We are hoping to have all these players attend the USTA Team Tennis Challenge in December so they can meet and compete against kids from all over the state.”

Winners were the Jacksonville Country Club in the 10-under division, Florida Yacht Club in the 12-Novice, San Jose Country Club in the 12-Advanced, and St. Johns Tennis Academy in both the 14-Intermediate and 18-Intermediate. The 8-under division was comprised of round robin play.

For more information about Junior Team Tennis leagues in Florida contact Liz Coates at or visit

Pre-Qualifier for ATP Delray Beach Open on Nov. 19-22

Del-Potro-2016-DelrayThink you’ve “got game” to possibly play with the pros?

The Delray Beach Open, an ATP World Tour event, will hold a pre-qualifying tournament open to all players on Nov. 19-22, 2016 at the Pro World Tennis Academy in Delray Beach.

More than 100 players are expected to compete in the tournament’s “Survivor” series event, which annually features local club players and club pros to current college players and nationally-ranked juniors.

The “Survivor” winner receives a wild card into the 16-player singles qualifying tournament of the 2017 Delray Beach Open, where the top four finishers move on to the main draw of the $575,000 ATP World Tour event.

The 10-day Delray Beach Open will be held Feb. 17-26, and includes an ATP Champions Tour event (Feb. 17-19) featuring tennis legends and an ATP World Tour event (Feb. 20-26). The tournament is celebrating its 25th event in 2017.

For more info go to