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2020 Community Champions: Sadie Reiners receives Janet Louer JTT National Organizer of the Year Award
WATCH: Mary Joe Fernandez honors Sadie Reiners
On Dec. 2, the USTA's Celebrating Community Champions virtual event honored 2020 award-winners in a variety of service-based categories. In the absence of a 2020 USTA Annual Meeting, each honoree received a surprise virtual call from a tennis legend as a thank-you for their contributions to growing the game of tennis.
Sadie Reiners of Hastings, Minnesota, has been selected as the recipient of the Janet Louer USTA Junior Team Tennis (JTT) National Organizer of the Year Award for her tireless work in developing junior tennis opportunities for youth in her community.
More than 10 years ago, Hastings' daughter showed interest and aptitude in tennis as one of many athletic pursuits. Recognizing the need for organized development of tennis in the local community, Reiners founded the Hastings Tennis Association National Junior Tennis & Learning (NJTL) chapter, and joined the USTA Northern Community Tennis Association and the Junior Team Tennis Committee.
After fielding just one under-18 team in the early years, Reiners now fields between 7-10 teams per year, and is a living blueprint for other growing JTT programs in the USTA Northern section to follow. The Hastings JTT program now has 80 participants annually, and six of Reiners’ teams advanced to USTA Northern Section Championships in 2019. Each team has a two-hour practice and match play during the season with special emphasis on sportsmanship, teamwork and commitment.
“Sadie's commitment of creating an environment where everyone is welcome to play with the ultimate goal to building character in each and every player is truly making an impact in these young players’ lives,” said Craig Morris, USTA Chief Executive, Community Tennis. “We are proud to recognize her for continuous efforts in growing the game especially through Sadie’s remarkable JTT program.”
The USTA annually awards the Janet Louer USTA Junior Team Tennis National Organizer of the Year Award to an individual who positively influences children’s lives and substantially impacts their community. The award is named after Janet Louer, who was instrumental in the development of junior tennis during her lifetime.
As the administrator for USTA JTT in Georgia, Louer built the state championships into the largest youth team tennis state championships in the nation. Her expertise also was utilized in the development of the Section and National Championships for the program.
USTA Junior Team Tennis emphasizes the benefits of tennis, including teamwork and fitness for players of various ages and skill levels. A competitive, multi-week program, USTA Junior Team Tennis encourages boys and girls, ages 6 to 18, to compete with teams from the same geographic region in five age divisions, beginning at 8-and-under through 18-and-under.
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