Those who have been involved with USTA Florida, or tennis in general, know the countless number of hours that go into operating a facility, event, or a team. There are so many moving parts with players, coaches, tournament directors, officials, and facility directors. But the glue that keeps everything together are the volunteers.
As we look back at 2022, USTA Florida wants to highlight the amazing work our volunteers have done this year and encourage new people to take their passion for tennis and share it with their community.
To all our volunteers that helped make each USTA Florida event as special as it can be, thank you for turning your passion into service. We know that your lives are already busy, but we love to see you create time to give back to the tennis community. Some individuals who have gone above and beyond for community were recognized as Volunteers of the Month.
Some other people that did extraordinary things in tennis this year were given awards at the 2022 USTA Florida Annual Meeting and Tennis Celebration weekend in November. Wendall Walker won the Spirit of Tennis Award; Robert Isosaari received the Exceptional Tennis Program Volunteer; The Delray Beach Youth Tennis Foundation (DBYTF) won the Diversity Achievement; Nick Liguori was the 2022 Outstanding Section Volunteer; The Ebony Evans-Molock Family was the Outstanding Family of the year; Tennis-4-Everyone (T4E) received the 2022 Outstanding Member Organization award; The RITA Foundation took home the Edward A. Turville President’s Award; And Kevin Johnson won the Merit Award.
We also have two separate boards, the USTA Florida and Section Foundation, each have volunteers that serve to help make tennis better for all. We want to thank them especially for going the extra mile, attending meetings, and being massive advocates for the sport.
As we move into 2023, USTA Florida has exciting opportunities lined up for all volunteers. USTA Florida Board President, Phil Girardi is committed to expanding the volunteer structure in 2023. “Now, more than ever, we need local volunteers to get engaged in local advocacy for facilities and programs,” he said.
Girardi has established a project team of staff and volunteers, and these individuals have a precise plan to change the structure so it can enable volunteers to engage in three key areas. Those areas are advocacy, coaching, and fundraising. It will take time to develop the structure, but he expects the new framework to be in place in the second half of 2023.
We are excited to put volunteers at the forefront of the organization, because we know tennis wouldn’t be the same without the generous hours you are giving to the sport. For now, you can visit ustaflorida.com/volunteer to learn about more opportunities in your area.