WASHINGTON, May 9, 2012 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- ThanksUSA today announced that Women's Tennis Association (WTA) No. 1 Doubles Player and US Open Doubles Champion Lisa Raymond will serve as a national spokesperson for the charity, which aims to thank America's troops through the gift of education. Ms. Raymond is partnering with Men's Doubles Champions Bob and Mike Bryan to team with tennis clubs, professionals, players and fans around the world to help provide ThanksUSA scholarships to military families.
"I am honored to become a spokesperson for ThanksUSA," said Ms. Raymond. "These scholarships open up limitless opportunities to the spouses and children of our troops. I encourage everyone to give back to our future heroes."
The Bryan brothers also produced a public service announcement for ThanksUSA that is being featured on the Tennis Channel and on TV stations in major markets.
The new nationwide "Tennis Thanks The Troops" campaign launched this month in honor of Military Appreciation Month. The United States Professional Tennis Association (USPTA) is leading the effort with ThanksUSA, with support from the United States Tennis Association Mid-Atlantic (MAS) through their tournaments.
"We are proud to be a part of a program that allows our members the chance to give back to those who are serving our country and their families through the invaluable opportunity of education," said USPTA CEO Tim Heckler.
"United States Tennis Association Mid-Atlantic strongly supports the efforts of ThanksUSA in providing the gift of education to our military families," said Rod Dulany, MAS executive director. "Through ThanksUSA, the MAS Clubs are giving back to the troops that support us. I hope everyone joins us in this worthwhile project."
Tennis facilities are holding ThanksUSA tournaments, sports clinics, auctions and other fundraising events, with a special focus on Memorial Day, to raise money in support of the ThanksUSA mission to provide need-based scholarships for the children and spouses of active-duty men and women across all the U.S. Armed Forces, the National Guard and Reserves.
"Our goal is to give the gift of education to those who sacrifice so much for every American – our military families," said Bob Okun, chairman and CEO of ThanksUSA. "Tennis enthusiasts are raising their racquets to show how much they appreciate the men and women in uniform who protect our freedoms."
For more information, visit www.ThanksUSA.org
Founded in the fall of 2005, ThanksUSA, a non-partisan 501(c) (3) organization, is an effort to thank the men and women of our armed forces and their families for their service to the country with the gift of education. The organization provides needs-based, post-secondary education opportunities to the children and spouses of active-duty status military personnel through competitive scholarships. For more information, visit www.ThanksUSA.org.
About the USPTA
Founded in 1927, USPTA strives to raise the standards of the tennis profession while promoting greater awareness of the sport. USPTA offers 70 professional benefits to its more than 15,000 members worldwide, including certification and professional development. With more than 300 days of educational opportunities throughout the year, USPTA offers the most comprehensive continuing education program in the tennis industry. For more information, call 800-877-8248 or visit www.uspta.com.
About USTA Mid-Atlantic
The USTA/Mid-Atlantic Section, one of 17 sections of the United States Tennis Association, is a not-for-profit organization committed to promoting tennis by offering quality recreational and competitive programs for people of all ages and abilities. Mid-Atlantic has been part of the official governing body for tennis in America since 1923 and serves more than 40,000 members in the District of Columbia, Maryland, Virginia, and eastern and southern West Virginia. Tennis players of all ages and skill levels are involved in leagues, tournaments and programs sanctioned by the section.
About Lisa Raymond (@lisaraymond73)
A native of Wayne, Pa., Raymond is currently ranked No. 1 in doubles on the WTA Tour alongside her doubles partner and fellow American, Liezel Huber. Throughout her professional career of 19 years, Raymond has won 78 women's doubles events and six major championships. Raymond is the oldest woman ever to win a Grand Slam women's' doubles title, winning the 2011 US Open with Huber at age 38 (previous oldest was a 36-year-old Billie Jean King).