Raymond Benton began serving a first two-year term on the USTA Board of Directors in January 2013. He is the board liaison to the Volunteer Development Council and serves on the Strategic and Creative Planning Committee and Membership Innovation Study Group.
Benton has held a number of previous positions with the USTA, serving on the Plan for Growth Steering Committee and the Public Relations Committee, both from 1999 to 2000. He was also a member of the Pro Circuit Committee from 1999 to 2002, serving as vice chair from 2001 to 2002. In addition, he served as first vice president, 1998-2001, and marketing chairman, 2007, of the USTA Mid-Atlantic Section.
Benton has had a lifelong involvement in tennis, both professionally and personally, working for 10 years as a tennis teacher and instructor at various venues including public parks, clubs and as head coach of Jacksonville State University in Alabama. In 1971, he became the first national executive director of the National Junior Tennis League (now National Junior Tennis & Learning), where he led the organization’s growth from three chapters to 50 chapters.
Also in 1971, Benton became a partner in the Washington, D.C.-based law firm Dell, Craighill, Fentress and Benton. The firm evolved into ProServ, one of the leading sports marketing companies in the world, where Benton served as president and the company managed athletes such as Tracy Austin, Jimmy Connors, Michael Jordan and Ivan Lendl.
From there, Benton founded the sports marketing company Net Assets (the owner of the worldwide senior tennis circuit featuring Connors, Bjorn Borg and John McEnroe), and he also worked as CEO at KSB Ventures before taking the position as CEO of the Tennis Center at College Park (Md.), home of the Junior Tennis Champions Center, a USTA Certified Regional Training Center, in 2008.
In his career, Benton has also served as president of the Colorado Youth Tennis Foundation, 1970, and of the North American Tournament Director’s Association, 1980-86, and as a member of the Men’s International Professional Tennis Council, 1985-86, and the WTA board of directors, 1997-98. He was elected to the USTA Mid-Atlantic Tennis Foundation Hall of Fame in 2005.
Benton graduated from the University of Iowa in 1964 and earned his law degree from the university two years later. In 1983, he earned an MBA from the University of Pennsylvania’s Wharton School of Business.
Benton lives in Washington, D.C., and is a member of the USTA Mid-Atlantic Section.