USTA Foundation commits to Kimmelman sport and education complex in Los Angeles
The USTA Foundation is set to play a crucial role in revolutionizing sport and education in the Los Angeles area.
The national philanthropic arm of the USTA has partnered with Tiger Woods’ TGR Foundation, the Walt Disney Company, philanthropist Doug Kimmelman and the Karsh Family Foundation to commit $50 million to the upcoming construction of the Carol Kimmelman Athletic and Academic Campus, a Carson-based project envisioned as one of the largest sport and education centers in America.
The campus, plotted on more than 80 acres, will increase outdoor green space in Carson by 61 percent, and will be anchored by the largest community tennis facility on the West Coast.
The USTA Foundation plans to make the campus the regional hub of its flagship National Junior Tennis & Learning (NJTL) program, significantly expanding the capacity for the USTA and its affiliates to provide the low-cost or no cost athletic development, wellness, academic and scholarship program that serves over 200,000 young people each year to the area. The campus will also serve as the headquarters for the USTA Southern California section, which will provide additional tennis programming in the form of junior and adult tournaments, college tennis, as well as wheelchair and adaptive tennis.
“There is an urgent need for resources to support kids and help them thrive, and this project delivers at a scale that will have a transformative impact throughout the region,” 18-time Grand Slam champion and USTA Foundation chairperson Chris Evert said. “I am eager to deepen our commitment in Los Angeles to bringing tennis and education together to change lives.”
The multi-sport campus will be named in honor of Doug Kimmelman's wife, Carol, a member of the 1983 national champion USC women’s tennis team and longtime educator in South Los Angeles who believed in the transformative power of sport for young people. A mother of four, Kimmelman passed away in 2017 from ovarian cancer, and her husband and children envisioned the project as a tangible reminder of the legacy she built and lives she touched in the area, which also includes the traditionally underserved communities of Compton, Watts and Inglewood.
In a statement, Doug Kimmelman said: “At a time when we’re having an important national conversation about deep-seated inequities and a history of underinvestment in communities of color, we have a project that is ready to give underserved children the quality education, resources and opportunities they need to prepare for college and life."
The project has been designed and approved for development by the County Board of Supervisors under the leadership of Supervisor Mark Ridley-Thomas. Construction is expected to begin by the end of this year, which will allow the facilities to begin serving young people and families in 2021.
A focal point of the new complex is the learning center, which will be overseen by the TGR Foundation, and offer STEM (science, technology, engineering, math) programs that will complement the curriculum at area public schools. The initial phase of development will include the construction of this 25,000 square-foot center, and the 40-court tennis facility. Future phases of the project will include the opening of several full-size soccer fields and other athletic facilities, such as basketball courts, track and field, and fitness and play areas for community use.
“From the moment I heard about this project, I was proud to embrace the bold vision and help bring it to fruition,” said Ridley-Thomas.
“Now more than ever, our young people need and deserve the investment in their future that this monumental project represents. Whether on the courts, or in a learning lab, lives will undoubtedly be transformed at the Carol Kimmelman Athletic and Academic Campus.”
To learn more about the Kimmelman Campus, and to donate to the Carol Richardson Kimmelman Fund in support of the project, click here.
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