July 13, 2004
July 2004
July 13, 2004
July 2004

Vic Braden Named Honorary Referee For 2004 Tournament

Serving as this year?s honorary referee is legendary tennis coach and teacher Vic Braden. Making his first visit to Kalamazoo since 1965, when he accompanied a group of juniors, Braden is eager to return.

?It is the dream of most young players to ?play Kazoo??, said Braden. ?It is an honor to serve in an official capacity ?at the most important tournament for young players in America.?

Braden?s familiarity with Kalamazoo is not confined to his work with junior players or his matches in the Nationals as a highly ranked junior. In fact, he knew the famous Stowe Stadium Tower as few ever have. A native of Monroe, Michigan, Braden worked for three summers on court maintenance at Kalamazoo College. His housing arrangements varied, and in the final year, he actually slept in the tennis ball closet on the top floor of the tower. There is a plaque on the tower?s wall proclaiming ?Vic Braden Lived Here,? a testament to his influence on the game while a student at K and beyond.

Encouraged by Dr. A.B. Stowe, Braden enrolled at Kalamazoo College and served as team captain of the Hornets, playing number one singles. ?There was great pride in knowing that no college in our league had beaten us in years. I have been involved in tennis for 65 years, and I know of no other institution that holds such a record.? (Kalamazoo College has won 66 straight conference titles).

After graduation, Braden began his career in tennis as a playing professional and was head tennis coach at the University of Toledo. He spent many years as a student of the physical and psychological aspects of coaching tennis and is a licensed psychologist. The author of six books, Braden has made multiple appearances on television as a coach, commentator and humorist. He is the founder of Vic Braden Sports Instruction and the Vic Braden Tennis Colleges, which are held nationwide.

When asked about his biggest challenge as a sports educator, Braden said, ?The major issue is education involving those adults who deal with young athletes. If a child is raised with the attitude ?Win at any cost,? he or she is normally headed for catastrophe.?

?Our goal as educators is simply to help each child maximize performance and enjoyment of tennis in the shortest period of time.?

Braden will be introduced as honorary referee at the National City/RX Optical Exhibition on Friday evening, August 6th.

Source: Colette Lewis (Tournament Office)