WASHINGTON, July 27, 2012 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Lisa Raymond, the 2012 mixed doubles Wimbledon champion, appears in her first public service announcement for ThanksUSA since being announced as the charity's national spokesperson earlier this year.
"We are thrilled that Lisa is lending her celebrity to help ThanksUSA provide scholarships for the children and spouses of America's troops," said ThanksUSA Chairman and CEO Bob Okun. "Her spectacular Wimbledon victory with partner Mike Bryan reflects the same dedication and spirit they both bring to thanking our military families with the gift of education."
"I am honored to support our Armed Forces through the mission of ThanksUSA," Ms. Raymond said. "The scholarships open up enormous opportunities for those who have sacrificed so much for our country, and my hope is that this PSA brings increased attention to ThanksUSA's efforts."
Ms. Raymond has joined Mr. Bryan and twin brother Bob in ThanksUSA's "Tennis Thanks the Troops" campaign, a cornerstone in the charity's efforts. The nationwide campaign was launched this spring, with the United States Professional Tennis Association (USPTA) leading the effort with ThanksUSA and additional support from the United States Tennis Association Mid-Atlantic (MAS).
Through the "Tennis Thanks the Troops" campaign, the Women's Tennis Association (WTA) No. 1 Doubles player and U.S. Open Doubles champion Ms. Raymond, along with the Men's Doubles champions the Bryan twins, partner with U.S. tennis clubs, professionals, players and fans in helping provide need-based post-secondary school scholarships to military families.
"Our men and women in uniform and their families are incredibly inspiring," said Mike and Bob Bryan. "Their bravery and commitment uplift every one of us, and raising our racquets for them is our way of showing our gratitude. We hope all Americans will join the ThanksUSA team."
The powerhouse mixed doubles pair of Lisa Raymond and Mike Bryan is now setting their sights on repeating their Wimbledon win at the summer Olympics where mixed doubles is returning as a medal sport for the first time since 1924.
"Taking the title at Wimbledon this year was the kind of moment that drives me," said Ms. Raymond. "Mike and I bring out the best in each other on the court and I'm looking forward to our joining forces again and representing our country at the Olympics."
Mike and Bob Bryan, bronze medalists in Beijing, will also be competing for gold in men's doubles. They are top seeds in the men's doubles, and Liezel Huber and Lisa Raymond are seeded No. 1 in the women's doubles.
"ThanksUSA is fortunate to have these world-class tennis players on our team," said Okun. "Their commitment to our troops makes us all winners, and we'll be cheering for them during the Olympics."
For more information on ThanksUSA go to 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 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).
About United States Professional Tennis Association (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 United States Tennis Association Mid-Atlantic (MAS)
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.