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July VOM: Region 3’s Julie Panton

June 27, 2006 01:04 PM

Julie Panton of Clearwater Beach is a certified USTA official, the Director of Tennis and head professional at Willis S. Johns Center, and she is the grassroots instructor at the St. Petersburg Tennis Center.  WOW!  I think it is fair to say that Julie does a lot for Pinellas County tennis!

In addition to these professional positions, Julie has volunteered with charity events, Suncoast Tennis Foundation events, school programs, and tennis carnivals and parties for two years.  Julie has also spent time promoting Cardio Tennis and local and international tennis clubs.

“I have unconditional love for the game,” Julie said.  “I love to learn, officiate, teach, promote and manage different aspects of the game.  I love introducing the game to people of all ages and watching them experience the fun of tennis.”

Julie’s hope is that each person to whom she introduces tennis will continue to incorporate the game into his/her life.  Julie was introduced to tennis later in her life, near the age of 50.

“The first time I held a racquet I knew I was hooked for life,” she said.

Julie’s key mission is to promote tennis to beginners of all age groups.  She refers to herself as a “tennis ambassador” because she loves promoting the sport locally and internationally, (specifically the Cayman Islands).

“Volunteering comes naturally to me.  By nature, I enjoy helping others,” Julie said.  “This applies especially to tennis where I am surrounded by happy, fun-loving people.”

Besides having fun, Julie strives daily to increase her tennis knowledge in all aspects of the sport, particularly how best to teach tennis simply and effectively.

“I am very proud of this honor,” Julie said.  “I must acknowledge the help of USTA Florida community coordinator Jeff Davis.”

Julie said she has made many friends through tennis, and people have been very encouraging and helpful as she expands her tennis career.

She sends special thanks to her mentors: Coach Carl Gavine, Coach Steve Snider, Patrick Wheeler, Terry Logan, Jeff Davis, all her friends and colleagues, and her loving husband Albert Colin Panton.






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