By Nancy Horowitz, USTA Florida volunteer president
It is already March 2016, where has the time gone?
It seems only yesterday was 2015 and what an amazing year it was for all of us, with the culmination of the USTA Florida Section being chosen the USTA Section of the Year by Tennis Industry magazine. Each and every one has helped create the state-wide team that helped us achieve this wonderful recognition.
USTA Florida volunteers and staff create a culture that together we do make a difference. So thank you to each of you for what you do to “promote and develop tennis for all.”
I have to reflect on all of the past Florida presidents and boards who helped create our wonderful section. They had the vision and foresight to do things that maybe were not what people expected, but they were willing to try new ideas. The great thing about our past presidents is so many continue to give back to our section by being involved in various areas within the section, and this is appreciated by all.
Our Executive Director Doug Booth guides staff to be team players, and to discuss ideas until a solution is agreed upon.
Thank you to those that are part of the USTA Florida Foundation, which makes a difference in people’s lives through the good work of the charitable arm of the USTA Florida Section. The foundation awarded 90 grants last year consisting of 82 for equipment, seven for project support, and one for facility support. These grants made it possible for adults and children to have the proper equipment to experience a fun time with friends through tennis.
It should be a very exciting year with the USTA National Campus, the “New Home of American Tennis,” being finished by the end of the year in Orlando. Through this state-of-the-art facility programs will be enhanced, and new ideas will be launched to promote tennis for all in a family-participatory atmosphere where different generations can play together.
The U30 initiative to produce under-30 tennis industry leaders has grown, and the partnership with the USPTA keeps moving this in such a positive direction.
There are so many acronyms and sayings, but the one thing I pass on to kids or anyone is, “do what you love, and love what you do.” If you are lucky enough to find that, embrace it, be committed, and do it the best way you know how. Many times through my life this has occurred and I have been fortunate to do what I love.
As we move forward into 2016 may I ask each of you to introduce tennis to someone new? Just think, if that could occur across the state, how exciting it will be to have so many new players in 2016. As always many thanks for your suggestions and support representing USTA Florida, and our future is bright in 2016.