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Virtual Conference:  For the Love of Tennis


Thank you to the USTA for sponsoring our conference.



Attendee, Session 6

"Great ideas discussed about growing the sport more in the African American community".


Attendee, Session 5

"Thank you so much to all of the panelists for such an inspiring and entertaining session! Great to hear your stories!".

Boy Holding Racket

Attendee, Session 2

"Valuable insight from all the panel members on what needs to be done to reinvigorate the ATA for our youth".

Session Recordings

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Session One: History of the ATA & Black Tennis

Moderator: Larry Bivins, former journalist, and blogger of "Tennis in the Hood"

Panelists:  Art Carrington, Katrina Adams, Bob Davis, Lange Johnson, and Willis Thomas Jr.

We began the session with an inspiring short video on Althea Gibson, followed by our five panelists who gave a glimpse of the early years of the ATA before Althea Gibson and Arthur Ashe. You will hear the vital role that HBCU’s played in the first years of the ATA and others who made it possible for young blacks to play tennis. This session provided insights into the partnership that has evolved between the ATA and the USTA.

Session Two:  A Champion's Life On and Off the Courts

Moderator:  Martin Blackman, General Manager Player Development, USTA

Panelists: Sean Holcomb-Jones, Martin Blackman, Chris Eubanks, Michael Mmoh, and Roy Smith

This session showcased young African American players on the professional tour. They discussed and shared their experiences in becoming a Champion on and off the Court. 

Session Three:  The HBCU Tennis Legacy

Moderator: Esu Ma'at,  Co-founder, Quantum Power Skills LLC

Panelists:  William Crutchfield, Gene Thompson, George Henry, Lonnie White

College tennis has held a significant place in ATA's history.  This panel of HBCU Coaches shared their thoughts on the critical role that HBCUs have played in Black tennis, why it's essential to support HBCU tennis programs, and what we can do to preserve Black tennis, especially post COVID-19

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Session Four:  Optimize Your Tennis Game

Moderator: James Champion, Founder, The Champion Services Group

Tara Ayers, Dr. Suzanne Afflalo, Dr. Gary Sailes

Stress is a normal part of the human experience. Injury, relatives, time demands, fatigue, competition, travel, and finances are just a few of the things in our lives that can cause athletes to become unglued in their relationships and during tennis competitions.

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Session Five:  Black Women Champions & Their Impact on Tennis

Moderator: Jim Berry, News Anchor WFOR - TV Miami, FL

Leslie Allen, Zina Garrison, Kyle Copeland, Kim Sands

Four of ATA's Female Champions whom all went on to play every Grand Slam pro tournament shared their thoughts on the ATA, Diversity in Tennis, and their hopes for the future of tennis.  Having their own unique reflections, each revealed the important role the ATA played in their development, the value of the ATA for today's young black players, and most importantly,  how they survived competing in the sport as black women. 

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Session Six:  The Future of Black Tennis

Moderator: Deanne Chevannes, Focused LLC

Dr. Dale Caldwell and Cecil Harris

Tennis is a $5.57-billion-a-year industry. An increased presence for Blacks in tennis should not be limited to what happens on the court. There are many career paths in tennis in which Blacks are severely underrepresented. Tragically, there is a shortage of Black Players, Administrators, Coaches, and Entrepreneurs at the highest level of the sport. This panel will discuss the things that have to happen to increase the success of Black players and bring equity, inclusion, and income to Blacks in every aspect of the very lucrative tennis world.  


UNFORTUNATELY:  we do not have a recording for this session - only the PowerPoint is available.

Virtual Series:  Speaker Resources


Cecil Harris

Link to Purchase

Different Strokes

Serena, Venus, and the Unfinished Black Tennis Revolution; purchase directory from bookstore.

Modern Sport and the  African American E

Dr. Gary  Sailes

Modern Sport and the African American Experience, purchase book directly from Publisher.

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Dr. Dale Caldwell

Tennis in New York: The History of the Most Influential Sport in the Most Influential City in the World, purchase book directly from Amazon.


Leslie Allen

Win4life - Master the Game


Art Carrington

Link to Purchase

History of Black Tennis.  To order directly from the ATA, click on the purchase button and send an email. 


Dr. Dale Caldwell

Intelligent Influence, purchase book directly from Amazon.


Larry Bivins

On line blog, Tennis in the Hood.

USTA Webinar Resources


Thanks to the USTA for providing the following information to our conference participants. 

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Athletic Development Warm-Up Progressions

Use these exercise progressions as a warm-up prior to tennis practice.

Podcast: In Search of Greatness Documentary

The producer and director of the documentary In Search of Greatness, Gabe Polsky, discusses his thoughts on creativity in sport, coaching for creativity, and coaching it out of youth.

USTA Play College Tennis Webpage

The USTA is committed to providing the knowledge and resources for all players interested in taking the next step in their tennis journey to the collegiate level.

Playing Tennis Safely

The USTA provides recommendations for playing tennis safely for tennis facilities and programs.

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Player Development Learning Webinar Series

The USTA Player Development Learning Series provides players, parents and coaches with access to resources and experts.

Podcast: Producing Tennis Playing Athletes

Vern Gambetta discusses making athletes better in their training environment and shares his insights into lessons learned along his coaching journey.

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Guide for the College-Bound Student-Athlete
USTA Facility Recovery Grants

The USTA Facility Recovery Grants are to assist facilities defray some of the tennis-related costs associated with reopening in 2020 if your facility closed due to the impact of COVID-19. 

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