November 2004 Tennis Volunteer of the Month
Carol Thies of Burnsville, MN
Look up the definition of “Minnesota Nice” in the dictionary and you’ll find a picture of Carol Thies, November’s Tennis Volunteer of the Month. The life-long Minnesotan and longtime volunteer with USTA Northern gives countless hours of service to the sport of tennis, especially with USA League Tennis.
Born and raised in Minneapolis, Carol earned both her degrees from the University of Minnesota, before embarking on a career in telecommunications for over 35 years. She retired in 2001. Between balancing work, family, and a twelve-tier garden, there was not much time for anything else in Carol’s life—until the 1980s when she took her first tennis lesson at a local high school.
“I knew right away this wasn’t basketball or volleyball and that I could grow to like it,” she said.
Tennis lessons led to league play and eventually to the Twin Cities Advisory Council for USA League Tennis, where Carol helps administer the Area and Sectional Championships, as well as the captains’ meetings each season. She helps formulate the schedules for the Twin Cities leagues throughout the year, and in 2004, became part of the Grievance Board for USA League Tennis in the section.
Carol has chaired the transportation committee for the Twin Cities $50,000 USTA Women’s Tournament, volunteers in the Northern section office when needed, and is playing a critical role in the 2004 USA League Tennis Western Region Mixed Doubles Championships in November 2004 in the Twin Cities. It is the first time in the tournament’s history Northern will host the event.
As if not enough, Carol also captains four USA League Tennis teams a year, including two adult and two senior teams. This year, her 3.5 senior women’s team advanced to the USA League Tennis National Championships in Palm Springs.
“The Northern section is lucky to have such a dedicated person in Carol,” USTA Northern’s executive director Mike Goldammer said. “She serves our section in so many capacities, I do not know where to begin. We would be lost without her dedication and passion for the section and the game of tennis.”
Although her husband jokes that “she needs to stop and smell the roses,” Carol would not have it any other way.
“I love tennis,” she said. “When I volunteer, I feel I am helping grow the game of tennis. Tennis is a lifetime sport, and we need to find more ways to get youth involved. I look forward to getting my grandson (Zachary) to some tennis functions this coming year.”
Do you know someone who would make a good Tennis Volunteer of the Month? Email Andrew Feldman with a short description of how your volunteer helps promote and develop the game of tennis. If you have a picture, send it along.
Go to USTA Tennis Volunteer of the Month page
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