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<h1>Awards<br />


USTA Midwest Section Awards

Each year the Section honors dedicated individuals and organizations for their service and support of the Section’s mission to grow, develop and service the sport of tennis.  Any individual may nominate a Midwest Section member or organization for an award; submission forms can be submitted through the online form, by email or mail. The deadline to submit nominations for the following awards has passed.


[CLOSED] The nomination period for the following awards is closed. Deadline to nominate is T.B.D. 


USTA League Volunteer Award

Recognizes the USTA League volunteer that has provided leadership and has made a significant contribution to the growth and enhancement of USTA League play within their District and the USTA Midwest Section.


2020 Recipient: Heidi Rozman (Waukesha, Wis., Wisconsin District)



Heidi has been active with USTA Leagues since 2010. She is currently, and has been, a captain for many teams. Heidi brings enthusiasm and excitement to the teams she captains and plays on. Wisconsin District can always count on Heidi to form a team, help create a new league, or simply find players to round out a roster.



Recognizes the outstanding NJTL Chapter that has demonstrated continued excellence in recreational tennis. Criteria include: quality of on-court and off-court programming, interaction with local parks and recreation departments, and contributions to the local community.


2020 Recipient: The ACE Project (Westmont, Ill., Chicago District)


The ACE Project launched tennis camps in 2013, and since then, they have utilized the ACE Curriculum to increase youth access to tennis at three schools in Riverdale/Dolton and, as of 2019, three schools in Detroit.


Moreover, The ACE Project engages youth through Midwest Youth Tennis Team, summer clinics/play days, and other special events. Last fall, they partnered with an organization to pilot a scholarship program that offers advanced training opportunities at a private Chicago-based club for six youth aged 8-12. Though the season was cut short by COVID-19 closures, the pilot successfully improved the tennis skills of the scholarship recipients; it is their goal to expand services to include more advanced training opportunities for youth transitioning out of the after-school program.


Cap Leighton Award

Recognizes the tennis teaching professional who contributes to tennis in his or her community beyond his livelihood.  This person gives freely in promoting involvement in tennis for players of all levels and ages, and assists in developing tennis programs and promoting participation.


2020 Recipient: Alexa VanOsdol (Fort Wayne, Ind., Northern Indiana District)


Alexa has been a USPTA professional since 2006. She has developed a fast-growing Midwest Youth Team Tennis program along with running 10 USTA Junior Tournaments for Wildwood Racquet Club. She was recently named the Ft. Wayne Tennis Ambassador; Alexa is in the community promoting opportunities for play from USTA Adult Leagues to MYTT.


Frank Dowling Award

Recognizes an individual who has displayed outstanding attributes as a tennis official in the Section for at least five years.


2020 Recipient: Doug Rice (Sandusky, Ohio, Northwestern Ohio District)


Doug strives to do and be the best that he can always be. He exemplifies what a tennis official should strive to be like. Doug always puts others' needs before those of his own. He is well respected by players, parents, and fellow officials. Doug adopted the motto 'do it now! do it right! do it with conviction!'


The Boy’s Nationals held in Kalamazoo every August has a special meaning to Doug. He began officiating at this tournament in 2012. Doug was awarded the Ron & Kathy Creager Outstanding Umpire Award Recipient in 2015. In 2018 Doug became the Chief Umpire of officials. Because of Doug and the fine reputation of this tournament, officials from all over the United States want to come and work this event. Doug strives to make this tournament better each year for officials, players, parents and spectators. 


Fred Burns Award

Recognizes the journalist, sportscaster, newspaper, radio or television station which has contributed the most toward promoting tennis on the local, district or sectional level.


Helen Shockley Award

Recognizes the outstanding 16 or 18-and-under age division female player from the Section for the highest standards of tennis accomplishments, character, conduct, sportsmanship and amateurism.


2020 Recipient: Karina Miller (Ann Arbor, Mich., Southeastern Michigan District)


Karina is an intense competitor, but also conducts herself with poise and class on the court. She treats her opponents with respect win or lose and is regarded by her peers as being quite fair with line calls. She was selected as Sportsmanship Award winner at the prestigious Easter Bowl tournament in 2017. Karina also enjoys the opportunity to compete as part of a team. She has represented Southeastern Michigan in the Marian Wood Baird Cup, and the Midwest in both the Intersectional Team Championships (16s) and the National Team Championships (18s). She is also a two-time winner of the Michigan State High School Athletic Association #1 singles flight.


She has posted a 54-0 record over her two seasons playing for Ann Arbor Pioneer and won the Detroit Free Press Girl’s Tennis Player of the Year Award in 2019. She has been named a team co-captain for the upcoming season. Karina was selected as the 2019 USTA Southeastern Michigan female Hoxie Award winner. She currently maintains a 3.991 GPA with several AP classes and scored a 1510 on the SAT. Her future plans are to attend the University of Michigan on a full athletic scholarship, where she will be a member of Varsity Tennis Team and major in business.


Wallace R. Holzman, Sr. Award

Recognizes the outstanding 16 or 18-and-under age division male player from the Section for the highest standards of tennis accomplishments, character, conduct, sportsmanship and amateurism.


2020 Recipient: Luke Baylis (Clarkston, Mich., Southeastern Michigan District)


"Luke is not only a great player but a great leader,” said Coach Claus. “A lot of players of his caliber a lot of times they will do private lessons or appear on the team for matches, not necessarily participate in everything. From the first day he stepped on with this team, he was out not only to work hard himself but to really help the people around him. Great players don’t make lesser players better. Luke made every single player he played with play better. He worked with them, encouraged them, caring about the outcome of their matches. His whole career, he only lost to four different players which is amazing. You are seeing the best of the best and to only have four guys your entirety of your high school career who can beat you.”


Luke won the Michigan High School Tennis Association Bob Wood Mr. Tennis Award 2019 and had a high school career record of 110-14 with 0 defaulted matches. Luke expects to attend and play tennis for Michigan State University in fall 2020.


Wheelchair Performance Award

Recognizes a volunteer, wheelchair player, tennis professional or coach who has made outstanding contributions and has demonstrated excellence in the sport of wheelchair tennis. This individual has shown evidence of dedication to improving, advancing and promoting wheelchair tennis in his or her community.


2020 Recipient: Andy Rodriguez (Toledo, Ohio, Northwestern Ohio District)


Andy has not only developed a wheelchair program in the area, but he has also worked to make tennis more accessible for the wheelchair players. He’s truly dedicated to the success of the wheelchair program in the Toledo area! Andy Rodriguez is the heart and soul of wheelchair tennis in Toledo - a place that had been lacking in adaptive sports and recreation for a long time.


CTA of the Year Award

Recognizes outstanding service rendered in the community served, and in the growth and development of the sport of tennis.


2020 Recipient: Excellence Tennis Foundation (Cincinnati, Ohio, Ohio Valley District)


FAST CTA was started in 2015 and has grown into the Excellence Tennis Foundation. It started as a 501 c3 school team tennis program that was low-cost and free. Now, the CTA operates in five segments: inner city tennis, FAST, Wheelchair Programs, Community Tennis, and High Performance Scholarships.

There are many services offered to the community:

  • Free and discounted wheelchair programming, including court donations, clinics, etc.
  • Free inner city programs at schools and parks
  • Scholarships offered to players to attend the High Performance Academy and receive private training
  • Play Tennis Cincinnati program offered for free to over 400 participants at the Western & Souther Open in 2019


Member Organization of the Year Award

Recognizes outstanding service by a member organization to its members and the game of tennis.


2020 Recipient: YMCA of Greater Kalamazoo (Kalamazoo, Mich., Western Michigan District)


YMCA of Greater Kalamazoo donates their entire tennis facility to the USTA Boys 18s and 16s National Championships. They offer pre-school and Montessori schools tennis programs. Courts are used by surrounding schools to support High School tennis (Portage Central, Northern, Mattawan, Kalamazoo Central, Vicksburg). With support of the Western Michigan Tennis Association, they are the go-to facility to bring USTA into the community. They have worked with the Spanish speaking community at El Sol school running programming in parking lots at the school.



[CLOSED] The nomination period for the following awards is closed. Deadline to nominate is T.B.D. 


The following awards will be presented to the recipients in their communities in the USTA/Midwest Section this fall.


League Captain Award

Recognizes a USTA League captain that has provided leadership and made a significant contribution to growth and enhancement of USTA League play within their District.


League Player Award

Recognizes a USTA League player that has participated in USTA League play with the highest standards of conduct and sportsmanship within their District.


League Facility Award

Presented to a tennis facility that has exhibited outstanding customer service to its members and the public, and is supportive of the USTA League program whether hosting USTA League teams and/or matches.


[CLOSED] The nomination period for the following awards is closed. Deadline to nominate is T.B.D. 


The following awards were presented during the USTA/Midwest Annual Meeting (January 30-February 1, 2020)


Mel Bergman Award

The USTA Midwest Section's most prestigious award, the Mel Bergman Award is given in recognition of continuous and distinguished service to the Section in an unselfish, dedicated manner for ten years or more. Mel Bergman, an extremely dedicated volunteer, was a President of the USTA Midwest Section who served on the USTA Executive Committee.


2019 Recipient: Paul MacDonald (Mundelein, Ill.)


MacDonald started volunteering with the USTA/Midwest Section in 1990 and has been an integral part of the tennis scene in Chicago, the Midwest, and nationally for over 30 years. He has volunteered on many USTA and USPTA committees and has spent countless hours advising and coaching adult and junior players and parents. 


MacDonald has also been involved with the implementation and developments of new National junior ranking systems throughout the years. In addition to his countless hours of service, MacDonald has been recognized at a District level all the way up to a National Level. Most notably, MacDonald served as the President of the Chicago District Tennis Association from 2009-2010. He was also a member of the Chicago District Tennis Association Board of Directors from 2005-2008 and from 2011-present. 


On a Section level, MacDonald served many years coaching junior players to success. He also served as a speaker at several USTA/Midwest Section events. 


Nationally, MacDonald was the head coach and administrator at the USTA Area Training Center from 1989 to 1992. MacDonald gives his time to the USTA National Junior Competition Committee as well. 


MacDonald continues to bring an open mind to the game of tennis and remains an unbiased and fair voice of reason in his work on and off the court. 



Stanley Malless Award

The Stanley Malless Award is presented to a volunteer recognizing distinguished service in his or her district. The award honors an individual who has contributed to the development of tennis programs from the grass roots up for five years or more.


2019 Recipient: Ginger Gilles (Indianapolis, Ind.)


Gilles began as an educator at Kokomo High School and the varsity girls tennis coach for 21 years, retiring in 2006 with 298 wins. She was selected as District Coach of the Year four time . Gilles also coached varsity volleyball, track and field, and basketball.


Gilles has been an advocate for the Central Indiana Tennis Association (CITA) for many years now, starting as a CITA Board member in 2008. She has been supportive of all USTA programs, including USTA League and USTA Jr. Team Tennis. Gilles was instrumental in the conception of the BBBS (Big Brother Big Sister) Tennis program, which has now run for three years. Gilles was also involved with starting the CITA Foundation and getting it off the ground. 


When Gilles became the president of Central Indiana Tennis Association in 2017, she became the next great leader of the organization, leading by example and attending all meetings. Gilles also volunteered for events and was extremely present at the Section level. 


Gilles formed relationships with everyone that she connected with in this role. In 2020, Gilles will be joining the USTA/Midwest Section Junior Committee as a member. As a member on the CITA board, Gilles was a great mentor for new board members, and her legacy is strong. One of her many goals was to plan for the future with clear actions and guidelines on how to achieve those goals. Gilles remains an active part of the Central Indiana tennis community. 




Family of the Year Award

This award is presented to the family in the Section that has contributed the most toward tennis through the years. Family members are all involved in tennis, serving their local area or district in promoting and perpetuating the development of tennis on all levels.


2019 Recipient: The Gene Orlando Family (Lansing, Mich.)


The Orlando family resides in Lansing, Mich. and is comprised of Gene, Janice, Vincent, Gabbie and Maggie Orlando. Gene Orlando has been the Michigan State University Men’s tennis coach for 28 years. He has coached the Western Michigan District Team Cup for the Boys’ 18s for the past two years. He also coaches the MSU Wheelchair tennis team, as well as running the MSU Showdown, which is an annual wheelchair tournament. Gene was also heavily involved in organizing Lansing’s first professional tournament, hosted this November. 


Janice is also involved with tennis, assisting with summer camps, as well as traveling coach/ mom with Gabbie and Vincent.


Gabbie played 17 USTA tournaments in her senior year of high school, all in the Western Michigan District. She now currently plays college tennis at Indiana University-Kokomo. Vincent is also quite the tennis player, an avid member of the Western Michigan Team Cup for the past two years. He won the Scott Frew Scholarship from the Western Michigan District. Most recently, he captured a second-place finish at the qualifier tournament and made it to the national level. Vincent currently plays at Ball State University in Muncie, Ind. 


Maggie has been the social media and photographer for MSU tennis camps and was a tennis counselor. She also served as the official photographer for the Capital City Classic. 


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