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Middle States

Mercer County Hosts its 2020 Tennis Hall of Fame Ceremony

Mercer County is hosting its Tennis Hall of Fame Ceremony for the Class of 2020 on Friday, June 10, at the Boathouse at Mercer Lake. Each of the inductees is influential in the tennis community — not only in the New Jersey area but all over Middle States. The class includes Michael D. Cremeans, Gwen Guidice, Elinor "Ellie" Kraut and Jon Morris Kraut on this honor. Take a look at the accomplishments of each of the inductees. 

 

2020 Mercer County Hall of Fame Inductees:

 

MICHAEL D. CREMEANS

 

Player, coach, and tennis advocate Michael David Cremeans grew up in Little Silver, N.J. where his love of tennis began. As a collegiate athlete at Brookdale Community College and Trenton State College, Cremeans excelled in the number one singles position and acquired a national ranking of 39 in the country. After college, Cremeans went on to coach and play in numerous USTA sanctioned and unsanctioned tournaments and leagues – bringing him to his favorite tournament, the James E. Cryan Tournament held at Mercer County Tennis Center. He is currently in a tie for most titles won.

 

His dedication and personal success on-court carried over to his coaching career – with a career highlight coaching the 2014 National USTA Junior Team Tennis 18 and Under Championships. As Director of YM Tennis in Yardley, Pa. Cremeans is known for bringing out the best in his players.

 

GWEN GUIDICE

 

Executive Director of the Princeton Tennis Program (PTP), Gwen Guidice dedicates her work to PTP’s mission – “Tennis for All.” Guidice’s impact was felt immediately upon hire. She expanded PTP’s partnerships, areas served, and teaching base, while also focusing on outreach programs. Partnerships with Special Olympics, Every Child Valued, Community House, and local schools and parks to provide free tennis programming highlight Guidice’s career. Guidice also orchestrated and hosted a dedication for Eve Kraft and the Princeton Tennis Program, established a free year-round Autism program, and became responsible for all operations at the Community Park Complex.

 

Guidice holds a degree in Aerospace Engineering from the University of Maryland. Her ability to develop programs, events, tennis facilities, and her ability to grow the game are unmatched. She also serves on various USTA Middle States committees, the Princeton Chamber Tennis and Golf Committee, and the Volley for SERV Tournament Committee. Guidice continues to enjoy playing tennis tournaments and advocating for the sport she loves.

 

ELINOR “ELLIE” KRAUT

 

Elinor Kraut grew up playing tennis with her father and siblings in Princeton, N.J. Kraut was known to many as the best athlete in town and passed her natural athletic ability down to her nine children. A hesitant Kraut began her instructional career at the Trenton YWCA, quickly realizing her love for teaching tennis and made it her life-long career. Kraut went on to teach at Mercer County Indoor Tennis Center, the Jewish Community Center in Ewing, N.J., the Ewing Adult Tennis Program, and throughout Mercer and Bucks counties. Likely Kraut’s favorite teaching location was the court she had built at her home in Ewing where she could combine dedication to family and tennis. 

 

Kraut’s dedication to the sport, her students, the  community, and her family led her to great honors. She was recognized by World Tennis Magazine in the Trenton Times highlighting her commitment to tennis and family. Kraut passed away in 2019, advising her avid league and tournament player children until the very end. Once a coach, always a coach. 

 

JON MORRIS KRAUT

 

Eldest son of fellow 2020 Mercer County Hall of Fame inductee, Elinor Kraut, Jon Morris Kraut prided himself on being ranked number one amongst his eight siblings. He held his number one title throughout high school where he played #1 singles for the Lawrenceville School. Kraut continued his tennis career at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill where he was a four year varsity athlete and won the ACC Team Championship all four years. Kraut also played for the USTA Middle States Junior Davis Cup team, won the ACC Championship at #5 singles, and was ranked in the top 5 for USTA Middle States.

 

Kraut’s playing career slowed after following in his father’s footsteps with dentistry. After graduating with his dental degree from the University of Pennsylvania, Kraut worked with his father as an orthodontist. Later completing a postgraduate degree at Tufts University School of Dental Medicine, Kraut opened his own practice in Bordentown, N.J. and Newtown, Pa. 

 

Even with Kraut’s busy work schedule he could often be found having loving conversations with family and friends on the court his mother built. Kraut enjoyed the camaraderie and competition tennis brought to his life until his untimely death in 2006. 

 

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