December Tennis Volunteer of the Month
Linda Hayes of Southlake, Texas
|For Linda Hayes, volunteering for tennis is a family affair.|
What does a mother of three children, all under age seven, do in her “spare” time?
If you’re Linda Hayes, you teach your love of tennis to the rest of the neighborhood kids.
“Tennis has opened so many areas to me,” Linda said.
“There is so much joy.
Honestly, it is such a pleasure, it’s almost too fun.”
A former Duke University walk-on player, Linda taught tennis camps during college breaks.
As a young mother with three children ages 6, 4, and 1, she began teaching the fundamentals of the game to children in her neighborhood, eventually coaching her son’s USA Team Tennis team to the Texas state championship.
Then, Linda learned of another demand for tennis volunteers.
The Texas Tennis Association needed volunteers to help with Special Olympics.
Linda took her two oldest children, Mike and Matt, with her to volunteer at the games held at UT Arlington.
The boys served in all aspects on the court, from referees and line judges to waterboys and ballboys.
Mike and Matt’s enthusiasm was contagious; the next year, Linda brought her husband Steve and daughter Molly along to help at the Special Olympic games in San Marcos.
They were equally enthralled with the experience.
Linda also volunteers her tennis skills (and her family) at a summer camp at Texas Scottish Rite Hospital for Children in Dallas.
For the second year, Linda, Mike, and Molly have spent several days in May and June working with children who have all types of disabilities.
“I think the thing I am most proud of is that my kids are comfortable with whatever,” Linda said.
“Being around the athletes at the Special Olympics and at Scottish Rite, they have been exposed to a lot of different people.”
Laura Gilbert, Community Coordinator with USTA Texas, nominated Linda for Volunteer of the Month.
“Linda was the USA Team Tennis Commissioner for the area for years and did an outstanding job,” Laura said. "Linda's spirit of volunteerism has been successfully passed down to her children, and so has her love of tennis!"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.
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