Billie Jean King & Clay Hamlin Honored
NYJTL Stresses Character Development
New York, NY—Spirits were high at the 27th annual NYJTL Luncheon honoring tennis icon Billie Jean King and Clay Hamlin, corporate citizen, CITRS founder and champion for character development.
The capacity crowd at the Grand Hyatt ballroom included Honorary Luncheon Chairs Jeanne Moutoussamy Ashe and former Mayor David Dinkins. Other dignitaries present were DYCD Commissioner Jeanne B. Mullgrav, New York City Parks Commissioner Hector Aponte, and Queens County District Attorney Richard Brown.
Honorary Luncheon Chair, and USTA Chairman and President, Jon Vegosen, opened the luncheon by congratulating NYJTL on its many accomplishments, and applauded the remarkable achievements of honorees King and Hamlin. Other USTA guests were President-elect David Haggerty, Vice President-elect Katrina Adams, and Executive Director and CEO Gordon Smith.
Event Chairs Lawrence Benenson, Peter Malkin, and Polly Scott stressed the importance of the dual mission of NYJTL programs that provide life skills training on the tennis court and in the classroom. The Benenson family has underwritten the cost of the luncheon since its inception in 1985.
Following the “CITRS Wake Up Call” demonstrated by NYJTL students from PS 9 and PS 250, NYJTL President and CEO Deborah Antoine announced that CITRS curriculum was introduced in September in 20 New York City schools where NYJTL operates programs. NYJTL is the fourth largest provider of out-of-school time programs in the New York City metropolitan area.
“It’s been shown in studies that students with lower IQ’s can achieve grades similar to students with higher IQs when they have demonstrated strong character development,” said Hamlin. “This is very important for youth who are committed to high achievement in all of their activities.”
Antoine also announced that construction will soon begin on NYJTL’s Cary Leeds Center for Tennis & Learning in partnership with the New York City Department of Parks and Recreation in the South Bronx. She also announced a new long term partnership with the Women’s Sports Foundation.
In her remarks, King said she had visited the site for the new Cary Leeds Center for Tennis & Learning. She reiterated that she grew up playing in the public parks in Long Beach, CA and emphasized how important a contribution NYJTL is making to the community with the development of the new facility.
Maurice DuBois, CBS Channel news anchor, hosted the luncheon, which also featured Sotheby’s auctioneer Jamie Ritchie who sold tickets to the Wimbledon semifinals for $15,000. In addition a NCAA Final Four basketball package raised $12,000, a dinner at renowned Rao’s restaurant was sold for $5,000, and US Open President’s Suite tickets were purchased for $8,000, netting $40,000 for the four auction items.
For more information about NYJTL programs, contact Maxine Baker at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Each year, New York Junior Tennis & Learning invites supporters to help raise funds for NYJTL programs and to honor outstanding leaders in the community. Speakers include NYJTL participants, former world-class tennis champions, and prominent and influential members of the media and community.
Through the generosity of the Benenson family, who has underwritten the Luncheon for the past 27 years, all donations will directly benefit NYJTL.
NYJTL programs are made possible by the generous support of corporate citizens, public officials and individuals. Click here to learn more.