Class of 2021
Katrina Adams

Born on Chicago’s West Side, Katrina Adams attended Whitney Young High School and Northwestern University. She is a woman of many firsts. She was the first African American to win an Illinois High School Association (IHSA) Tennis Singles Title, the first African American to lead the United States Tennis Association (USTA), the first two-term Chairman and President (2015-2018) of said organization, and the first former player to hold that honor. Having attended Northwestern University, Katrina led the Wildcats to a Big Ten Championship in 1986 and partnered with Diane Donnelly to win the 1987 NCAA Doubles Championship. A familiar face in sports commentary, as a professional player, Adams competed for 12 years on the WTA Tour, winning 20 career doubles titles and reaching the quarterfinals or better in doubles at all four Grand Slam events. Under her tutelage, the United States Tennis Association achieved a number of major milestones, including the opening of the 100-court USTA National Campus in Orlando, the strategic transformation of the $600 million USTA Billie Jean King National Tennis Center in Flushing Meadows, N.Y., and an unprecedented outreach effort into underserved communities in an effort to share the sport of tennis with more people. Adams’ sheer determination and hard work in tennis, leadership, and philanthropy have earned her many accolades, including being named on Adweek magazine’s “Most Powerful Women in Sports” list twice (2016 and 2017), Forbes magazine’s “Most Powerful Women in Sports” list in 2017, and Ebony magazine’s “Power 100” list. As vice president of the prestigious International Tennis Federation, Chairman of the Billie Jean King Cup Committee, Chairman of the Gender Equality in Tennis Committee, Executive Board member of the International Tennis Hall of Fame, and the Executive Director of the Harlem Junior Tennis and Education Program, Adams believes this is just the beginning. Adams lives in Yonkers, New York. Her maiden novel “Own the Arena” was published by Harper Collins Publishers, Amistad Books, February 23, 2021.

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