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Nonprofit Brings Tennis to Elementary Schools

Paul Settles first began competing in USTA Father-Son tournaments in 1977 when Settles was only 12 years old.

As he grew older, Settles became the father in the Father-Son and Father-Daughter events and added Husband-Wife tournaments.

Tennis In Our Schools Introduces Children to the Sport

He remained the son through the Ultra Senior level, for fathers 80 and older.

Tennis has been a bonding force for Settles and his family.

The sport has provided physical, emotional and professional success to his life.

Seeking a way to give back, the Claremont-Mudd-Scripps men's coach and his wife, Kathy, created Tennis in Our Schools.

The nonprofit provides after-school tennis lessons to the seven elementary schools in Claremont, California.

“If you go to the elementary schools, they are all learning how to play basketball and kickball. That is great, but nobody is learning how to hit a tennis ball,” Settles said. “They could be learning something that could potentially be a lifetime sport they could love and derive enjoyment from like our family has done.”

The genesis for the nonprofit came five years ago when Settles began running the USTA National Father-Son Hardcourt Championships at the Biszantz Family Tennis Center at Claremont McKenna College.

“We thought of using this as a vehicle to try to give back to something that has meant so much to us,” Settles said. “We tried to discern what needs there were in the community, and one thing that really struck both Kathy and me was there was really no tennis programs in the schools.”

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Page updated on Sunday, July 21, 2019
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