Zina Garrison celebrated both the 20th anniversary of the Zina Garrison Tennis Academy and her 50th birthday with gala “A Story of Love” at The Houstonian Hotel last Saturday (more infos here).

Former tennis players Billie Jean King, Chanda Rubin, Pam Shriver, Katrina Adams and Lori McNeil but also track and field legends Jackie Joyner Kersee and Carl Lewis did attend the event. Here are a few pics:
 

Photo credit: Meagan Elliott

Gala Marks Academy’s 20th Anniversary & Garrison’s 50th Birthday, Joined by Billie Jean King, Carl Lewis Jackie Joyner-Kersee and George Foreman.

Zina Garrison will celebrate both the 20th anniversary of the Zina Garrison Tennis Academy and her 50th birthday with gala “A Story of Love” at The Houstonian Hotel on Saturday, November 16, 2013.
The Academy will proudly honor tennis legend Billie Jean King, presenting her with the “Service with Love” award for her contributions to the ZGA program, her championship endeavors on and off the court, and for being an ideal role model for today’s youth.

The gala will serve as the centerpiece for a full weekend of activities surrounding the dual anniversaries. Olympic legends and gold medalists Pam Shriver, Carl Lewis and Jackie Joyner-Kersee, plus former two-time World Heavyweight Champion George Foreman will all be present for the festivities, along with former Texans players Chester Pitts and Travis Johnson.

For two decades, the Zina Garrison Tennis Academy’s mission has been to develop stars in the classroom, on the tennis court, and in the community. They have provided educational support and tennis instruction to over 25,000 underserved children in Houston. The Academy provides free programming year-round, helping young people discover their individual talents, stay healthy, and become future leaders in the community while learning the sport of tennis.

Please visit www.zinagarrison.org for more information.

In 1994, Lori McNeil caused one of the biggest upset in tennis history by defeating Steffi Graf in the first round at Wimbledon. That year, McNeil went on to reach the semi-finals at Wimbledon before losing to eventual-champion Conchita Martinez.
During her a 17-year professional career, she captured 10 singles and 32 doubles titles.

Following her retirement in 2002, McNeil served as the Assistant Coach of the U.S. Olympic Women’s Tennis Team in 2004 and 2008. She also worked as a High Performance Coach for the United States Tennis Association from 2004 through 2012.

Lori McNeil has now joined Houston’s Zina Garrison Academy as Director of Tennis. The Academy, founded by Wimbledon finalist Zina Garrison and her coach John Wilkerson in 1993, provides 50 weeks a year of free programming to all children in the Houston area.
The mission of ZGA is to develop stars in the classroom, on the tennis court, and in the community by providing educational support, positive role models, parent education, and excellent tennis instruction.

In conjunction with McNeil’s arrival at the Zina Garrison Academy, the Board of Directors has commissioned a set of three silver coins featuring the images of Zina Garrison, Lori McNeil, and John Wilkerson.
The first edition of these coins will be offered as an auction item at the Zina Garrison Academy‘s upcoming gala luncheon at the Houstonian Hotel on Monday, November 19, 2012. For tickets and information, call Linda Elliott at (713) 857-3167.

More infos on Zina Garrison Academy website.