2022 Award Winners Announced
WESTBOROUGH, MA – USTA New England is proud to announce its five 2022 Annual Award Winners. These extraordinary individuals and organizations went above and beyond to promote and develop the growth of tennis in New England in 2022, and they will be honored at a ceremony at Tennis Weekend on November 5 in Framingham, MA.
Winners were nominated by the New England tennis community and then voted on by the USTA New England Awards Committee.
The 2022 winners are:
Diversity Champion - Thomas Dodd
Thomas Dodd is the founder and Executive Director of the South Coast Wheelchair Tennis Foundation, based in Attleboro, MA. His organization provides instruction in wheelchair tennis for those in and out of wheelchairs. Thomas coaches adults and juniors and leads free wheelchair clinic all across New England for new and experienced players.
He serves as the Chair of the USTA New England Wheelchair Tennis Committee and sits on the National Wheelchair Tennis Committee. He also serves on the New England D&I and Adaptive Committees. Thomas advocates around the clock for wheelchair tennis to be part of the daily narrative shared throughout the sport of tennis.
Junior Provider of the Year – Tammy Azur
Tammy Azur is the Tennis Director at the Edge Sports and Fitness in Essex, VT, and the Junior Program Director at all Edge locations. For the Edge, Tammy’s roles include developing programming, overseeing staff, coaching at all levels, working as the Junior Team Tennis (JTT) Coordinator and Coach, and serving as a USTA Tournament Director.
Tammy led her JTT team to USTA New England Sectionals this past August.
She also serves on the USTA Vermont Board of Directors, is the co-chair of the Vermont State League Committee and is on the Vermont Junior Committee.
Tammy’s enthusiasm and energy brings countless Vermonters into the game every year, and without her, the state of junior tennis in Vermont would not nearly be what it is today.
Organization of the Year – Spark Fitness & Tennis
Spark’s mission is to empower its members to become the best version of themselves by being active participants in a community focusing on tennis, fitness, and nutrition, and in just its first three years in business, that’s exactly what it’s done.
On just four courts, the Andover, MA facility housed 53 USTA League teams in 2021, and this year, has already logged 57 and counting, with many reaching New England Sectionals and Nationals.
In 2020, club owner Adam Molda founded one of New England’s newest National Junior Tennis & Learning (NJTL) chapters, to serve underprivileged youth of Lawrence, MA through tennis, fitness and education enrichment.
The club has supported numerous community organizations, including the Alzheimer’s
Association, the Lazarus House and Be the Match.
Spark has programming for all ages and abilities, and the staff are passionate about their work and students, and pride themselves on giving everyone the best tennis experience possible.
Community Tennis Association (CTA) of the Year - The Granite YMCA
The Granite YMCA is the largest YMCA association in northern New England, with six New Hampshire facilities. Tennis takes place at the Allard Center in Goffstown, where programs are offered for adults and youth starting at age 4.
Two years ago, the tennis staff worked to establish a free community tennis program in Manchester to give underserved youth and families the opportunity to play weekly. During quarantine, the staff taught them how to practice tennis in their driveways and at home. The Y also donated and delivered tennis equipment to households throughout the community.
During the summer of 2020, when most camps and programs were closed, the Y hosted free tennis lessons outside in Manchester for all to learn the basics and play matches safely.
In the past year, USTA programs at the facility have gone up 43%.
The Y is the definition of a community organization that includes so many who dedicate their time to give back to the sport. The organization recruits adult and junior volunteers to help with tournament and league matches, court reservations, team travel and more.
National Junior Tennis & Learning (NJTL) Chapter of the Year - Central Lincoln County YMCA
The Central Lincoln County (CLC) YMCA in Damariscotta, ME offers tennis programming for both youth and adults. From free red ball lessons twice a week to free Saturday Stay-and-Play for families to receive nutritional guidance, homework help and tennis, the CLC Y goes above and beyond to serve its community.
The organization recently provided backpacks with racquets, balls, and art supplies to 300 students and offered free lessons at recess with a Y pro at their school.
The CLC Y works with many of the nearby elementary schools and hopes to expand to all soon. They partner with the local food bank, farms, Tennis Without Borders and NOMI Maine.
They also offer therapeutic art as part of all NJTL programming.
The CLC Y was named USTA New England’s 2018 Community Tennis Association of the year, and they continue to show why they are a staple in the Maine community.
For more information on the USTA New England Annual Awards, click here.
About USTA New England
USTA New England, one of 17 regional sections across the country that comprise the United States Tennis Association (USTA), is a not-for-profit organization committed to promoting and developing the growth of tennis and increasing participation in the sport in New England by offering quality recreational and competitive programs for people of all ages and abilities. For more information, visit www.usta.com/newengland.
Media Contact: James Maimonis
Manager, Media & Communications
508-366-3450 ext. 112