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ITA announces 2014 Annual Award winners

December 6, 2014 05:28 PM

USTA Intermountain announced its 2014 Annual Awards winners at an awards breakfast and ceremony held Saturday, Dec. 6, 2014, at the Denver Marriott Tech Center in Denver, Colorado.

Each year, USTA Intermountain honors individuals and organizations that work to promote and develop the growth of tennis in the Intermountain Section of the United States Tennis Association. Intermountain’s six Districts (Colorado, Idaho, Montana, Nevada, Utah and Wyoming) annually nominate candidates for the following recognitions: Developmental Coach of the Year; Organization of the Year; Family of the Year; Barbara Clark/Diversity & Inclusion Community Service Award; Jan Dowse (exemplary volunteer/staff member) Award; Youth Tennis Ambassador; and Nikos Ridle (sportsmanship) Award. Congratulations to all of our recipients!

2014 Developmental Coach of the Year: Randy Ross; Littleton, CO
Initiated in 2000, this award is given to recognize the outstanding efforts of a developmental coach in the USTA Intermountain Section. This coach is being honored for his or her endless dedication to developing junior tennis players at all levels through teaching, presence at tournaments and events, and positive role modeling, on and off the court. 

2014 Organization of the Year: Idaho Falls Community Tennis Association; Idaho Falls, ID
Given annually to recognize the services rendered to Intermountain’s USTA members by its member organizations: Community Tennis Associations, Clubs, and Parks and Recreation Departments. Section winners are submitted to the USTA for the National Organization of the Year Award.

2014 Family of Year: Foley Family; Las Vegas, NV
Presented annually to a family within the USTA Intermountain Section who has exemplified the benefits of tennis as a family recreational sport and has contributed to their tennis community in a significant way. Section winners are submitted to the USTA for the National Family of the Year Award.

2014 Barbara Clark Diversity and Inclusion Award: Esequeil ‘Kelly’ Lovato; Denver, CO
Initiated in 2000 as the Community Service Award, this award was renamed in 2006 to honor Barbara Clark, who died in September of that year. Barbara was a longtime employee and ambassador for the Section. This award is given annually to honor an individual in the Intermountain Section who has made a significant contribution to multicultural populations and communities through tennis.

2014 Jan Dowse Award: Tollan Whitlock; Idaho Falls, ID
Named after Jan Dowse, former Executive Director of the Utah Tennis Association, this award is given to Intermountain’s Volunteer or Staffmember of the Year to recognize his or her outstanding contributions, personal unselfishness and devotion to the game. 

2014 Youth Tennis Ambassador (10 and Under) Award: Frank Adams; Aurora, CO
Initiated in 2012, this award is given to recognize the outstanding individual efforts of a coach, parent, CTA or organization that is helping to build the 10 and Under Tennis program.

2014 Nikos Ridle Award: McKay Novak; Las Vegas, NV
Presented annually to a junior tennis player within the USTA Intermountain Section who exemplifies the spirit of tennis through their activities on and off the court. This award is given in memory of Nikos Ridle, a nationally ranked junior player from Billings, Montana, who was killed in an automobile accident at age 19. Section winners are submitted to the USTA for the Bill Talbert Junior Sportsmanship Award.

2014 Jon Messick Leadership Award: Jon Messick; Fort Collins, CO
This new award was created this year in recognition of Jon Messick, Past President of the Intermountain Tennis Association. Jon served as President of Intermountain Tennis Association during a very challenging time in the Section's history. He responded to every problem with a soothing solution; involving all stakeholders in an honest and respectful manner that put the goal of growing tennis above all else. Jon's leadership exuded a quiet sense of purpose, a vision of what needed to be accomplished, and the resolution to address critical and often difficult issues. Through it all, he never lost sight of the fact that tennis was more than just a game, but a valuable venue for teaching life lessons. His leadership skills were also demonstrated in numerous Board and volunteer roles throughout the Colorado District and the Intermountain Section, as well as in his position as head coach of the Colorado State University women's tennis team. This award is given periodically in honor of individuals who exemplify the transformational and servant leadership characterized by Jon Messick.

2014 Tennis Industry Association (TIA) Section of the Year Award: USTA Intermountain
TIA is a not-for-profit trade association for the sport that promotes the growth of tennis and economic vitality of the industry. TIA works closely with the USTA and annually honors one of its 17 sections as the “USTA Section of the Year.” Congratulations to USTA Intermountain for receiving this prestigious recognition for 2014.  

Complete recipient award videos will be posted online at by 5 p.m. Friday, Dec. 12.

USTA Intermountain is one of 17 sections of the United States Tennis Association. We are a nonprofit organization committed to growing the game of tennis by offering quality recreational and competitive programs for people of all ages and abilities. Intermountain has more than 41,000 individual and more than 424 organizational members in its six Districts (states); Colorado, Idaho, Montana, Nevada, Utah and Wyoming. For more information, contact Wendy Anderson, ITA Marketing and Communications Manager, at (303) 518-9545 or  



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