President's Message

Dear Members,


I hope everyone is having a wonderful summer and playing lots of tennis! I was lucky enough to play two recent Category 2 tournaments in my backyard, the Pacific Coast Seniors at the historic Berkeley Tennis Club and the Marin Championships at the Mill Valley Tennis Club…the same club where I played one of my first junior tournaments many years ago.


Mill Valley has been updated through the years, but is still very much the intimate welcoming club I remember as a twelve-year-old. Back then I was making new friends in the world of tennis. I find it extraordinary that more than 50 years later I’m still making new tennis friends while maintaining some of those same relationships formed back when I was that twelve year old at Mill Valley. How lucky we all are to have found tennis!


When we enter a tournament we are thinking about how it will go on the court… Will I play well? Will I get a good draw? Will my sore knee hold up? Those things all matter, but I find that it’s often what happens off the court that I remember…The group dinner where I really connected with some frequent opponents for the first time off the court…The shared ride to the airport, racing to make our plane after a long match.


I would like to hear what makes you keep coming back to tournament tennis, and more importantly why do you go back year after year to a particular tournament. Knowing what really motivates our entrants will help us to improve and grow our events. Please take a moment to think about this and reply to this brief survey: also to hear why you are no longer playing Cat 1 or 2 events. The more we know about what women players want the more we can do for you as an Association to make it happen. Click here for survey


It’s hot out there on the courts this month… stay hydrated!!


Andrea Barnes

NSWTA Co-President

First Gold Ball Winners

Laurie Leach won her First Gold Ball playing 85 singles in the National Indoors Championships in Lexington, KY last month. Way to hang in there for a Gold Ball!

Carolann Castell has several Gold balls in doubles, but won her first in singles by beating Suella Steel in a 3 1/2 hour battle at the National 75 Indoors in Lexington.

Toni Novack

Toni won her First Gold Ball in singles at the National Clay Courts 70s in Palm Beach Gardens.

Judy Dixon

Judy won her first Gold Ball at the National Clay courts, playing 70 Doubles with Vicky McEvoy.

Ligia Bottinelli

Ligia won her first Gold Ball at the National Clay Courts in Palm Beach Gardens, with Pat Purcell in the 60 dbls.

Tabatha Waddell

Tabatha won her first Gold Ball at the recent National Clay Courts, playing with Lizl Kotz in the 40 doubles.

Introducing NSWTA Team Members


Yolanda Thierren, Accountant

Yolanda (Yodie) is a lifetime member of both the USTA and NSWTA and served as Treasurer and now Accountant of NSWTA. She began playing tennis at age 35 and played her first National tournament 15 years ago. She holds a CPA license in California and Oregon and has performed audits for non-profit medical and for-profit organizations for over 30 years. As tennis became a larger part of her life, she chose to run her own practice where she now prepares tax returns for individuals and corporations alike. She is married to a wonderful man, Keith, for 37 years. Besides tennis, her grandchildren are her passion.


Kim Mark, Web and Graphic Design

Kim grew up in Northern California in a tennis-playing family. At age 9, Kim began playing in junior tournaments, and played multiple sports in high school and college at California State University, Fullerton. Kim taught physical education to all ages and also was the Youth Programs Director and eventually the Communications Director at the Bay Club in Redwood Shores. She later joined the corporate marketing team for the Bay Clubs in San Francisco. Currently, Kim is enjoying teaching tennis camps and designing websites. Kim designed and maintains the NSWTA website and formats the monthly e-Newsletter.


Pam Ellis Simons, Editor

Pam grew up playing tennis in Southern California and played on the non-travel team for Stanford. After college, she worked as a reporter for Newsweek magazine in the 1970s, Business Week magazine in the 1980s and freelanced while raising three daughters. She played national and regional squash and paddle tennis tournaments before she and her husband moved to Charleston, SC, where new friends (NSWTA Ambassadors Cindy Babb and Brenda Carter) introduced her to the NSWTA and USTA national tournaments. She has been Editor of the NSWTA magazine since 2011.


Welcome New Members

The NSWTA would like to welcome our latest new members: Kathy Abbott, Nancy Abrams, Michelle Aguilar,

Joan Avedian, Jan Baines, Masako Beppu, Elizabeth Brinson, Martha Church, Margaret Daniels, Kia Farzaneh, Claudia Giacomini, Patty Schoonover Jones, Yvette Kruger, Laurie Lambert, Carolyn Lane, Marie Porter, and Sonia West.

NSWTA E-Newsletter

The NSWTA monthly e-Newsletter has replaced the magazine. See archived e-Newsletters and Magazines here.


USTA on Tennis Channel

Check out what Tennis Channel has to say about the growth of USTA age group tournaments.

Click here


2020 Friendship Cup

The Ralph and Mary Wilson Friendship Cup Application for the summer of 2020 is available now. Click here



National Senior Games 2019

NSWTA long-time member Kathie Meyering, from Fredericksberg, Texas, graces the cover of Sports Illustrated National Senior Games issue. The games showcase some of the greatest senior athletes in the country and hosts more than 13,000 of the top senior athletes in the nation, competing in 20 medal sports that range from archery to cycling to swimming to tennis to volleyball to track and field. The 2019 National Senior Games presented by Humana, held in Albuquerque June 14-25, has the most registered athletes in the 32-year history of the event.

Read more


Men's Senior Tennis Website

Stay in touch with the National Senior Men's Tennis Association (NSMTA) at

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Jolene F. Watanabe (1969-2019)

Jolene F. Watanabe, 50, of Hilton Head Island, wife of Sylvain Elie and daughter of NSWTA member Janet Watanabe, died Saturday, June 22, 2019, after nearly two-year fight with cancer of the appendix. Watanabe was the head pro at the Smith Stearns Tennis Academy in Hilton Head Island, South Carolina. Watanabe was recruited out of California to play for University of Nevada Las Vegas. She was the Big West Conference Player of the Year as a senior.  Read more


Lynn Little (1937-2019)

Lynn passed away May 10, losing a long battle with cancer. She was 81. Born into an active tennis family, she was a lifelong tournament tennis player. But it was a little later in life that she enjoyed her greatest success in senior age group tennis tournaments. From 1992 to 2016, she won 55 USTA award balls. Later, playing as a USTA American team member in international tournaments, she won two world doubles championships in matches played in Croatia and Istanbul.  Read more

Margaret Anderson (1928-2019)

Margaret passed away April 29, 2019 after a two-year fight with lung lymphoma. Margaret was President of the NSWTA for the years 2001-2003. She remained our long-time Parliamentarian, keeping us honest at our meetings and gently chiding us when the photos in the magazine got too small. She was an energetic and helpful fixture at certain tournaments, even when she had to stop playing in them. Read more

Wynn Cooper (1949-2019)

NSWTA lost a dear friend and tennis enthusiast when Wynn Cooper passed away from breast cancer on March 26th. Wynn was amazingly kind and thoughtful and she loved tennis more than anyone I know. Apart from her bookkeeping business, tennis was her favorite pastime through which she made many good friends. Read more