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Two Southern Juniors Named Arthur Ashe Essay Contest Winners

August 19, 2003 08:57 AM

The USTA announced the 10 winners of the fifth annual USA Tennis NJTL Arthur Ashe Essay Contest. For the first time, the essay contest welcomed entries from all school children across the nation following the successful pilot that was previously open only to USTA/NJTL participants. To enter, children, 18 or younger, had to write an essay in 300 words or less on “Why is Arthur Ashe a sports legend?” A USTA sub-committee selected the winning essays based on knowledge of Arthur Ashe, message clarity and writing style.

The 10 winners receive a travel package that includes: round-trip coach airfare to New York City for themselves and a parent/legal guardian; two nights at the Grand Hyatt Hotel; an honorary plaque; lunch with former New York City Mayor and USTA Board Member David Dinkins; and two tickets to the 2003 Arthur Ashe Kids’ Day, a New York Liberty basketball game, ”The Lion King”, and a sightseeing tour.

The 10 winners of the 2003 Arthur Ashe Essay Contest are:

“Arthur Ashe lived an exemplary life, donating his time to underprivileged youth and growth of the game,” said D.A. Abrams, Director, Community Outreach, USTA. “We are proud to name these 10 winners who exemplify Ashe’s character and honor his boundless contributions to both the sport and disadvantaged youth through this essay contest.”


Age Group



Albert Alberson


Las Cruces, N.M.

home schooled

Wendrah McCoy


Charleston, S.C.

James Simons Elementary

Rashad Williams


West Palm Beach, Fla.

Active Learning Center

Kelley Wollman


Chapel Hill, N.C.

Smith Middle School

Vaughn Morgan


New Castle, Del.

Cab Calloway School of the Arts

Mary Feeney


Indianapolis, Ind.

home schooled

Robert Tainsh III


Winter Park, Fla.

Florida Virtual School

DeeDee Nelson


Bountiful, Utah

Bountiful High School

Brendan Lowe


Cherry Hill, N.J.

Cherry Hill High School East

Ryan Lane Hamilton


Havre, Mont.

Havre High School

The USTA/NJTL, also known as USA Tennis NJTL, was established in 1969 by Ashe, Charlie Pasarell and Sheridan Snyder to use tennis as a means of developing the character of young people who may not otherwise have the opportunity to learn and play the sport. Since 1985, it has been owned and supported by the USTA as one of its primary outreach programs to multicultural communities. With over 1000 Chapters and Programs and over 200,000 participants, the USA Tennis NJTL instills in youngsters the values of humanitarianism, leadership, and academic excellence, and gives youngsters the opportunity to fully develop their tennis skills for a lifetime of enjoyment from the sport.

The USTA is the national governing body for the sport of tennis in the United States and owns and operates the US Open. In addition, it funds the 96 Professional Circuit events throughout the U.S., and selects the teams for the Davis Cup, Fed Cup, Olympic and Paralympic Games. A not-for-profit organization with more than 670,000 members, the USTA invests 100% of its proceeds to promote and develop the growth of tennis, from the grassroots to the professional levels. For more information on the USTA, log on to www.usta.com.

Arthur Ashe Essay Contest Winners (L-R): (front) Wendrah McCoy, Adam Alberson, Kelley Wollman, Mary Feeney; (back) Vaughn Morgan, DeeDee Nelson, Rashaad Williams, Robert Tainsh, III, Brendan Lowe, Ryan Lynn Hamilton



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