The annual SCTA Service Awards were presented on Monday, February 6 at the Los Angeles Tennis Center, honoring those who have made a lasting impact on tennis activities throughout southern California.
Among the honorees was Neighborhood Junior Tennis Program (NJTP) founding member Steve Tscherne, who posthumously received the organization’s Lifetime Achievement Award. Mr. Tscherne served as the organization’s Board President for many years, offering the game to countless children and adults throughout San Fernando Valley through affordable lessons and competition. Mr. Tscherne passed away in December after a battle with cancer.
Well-known personality Anthony Lara received the Curt Condon Spirit Award. Lara, a longtime wheelchair competitor, has served as an alternate for the U.S. team in the Paralympic Games, and competed in the 2013 BNP Paribas World Team Cup. He continues to teach youngsters to overcome physical obstacles to enjoy the game that he has played for more than 25 years.
The Evelyn Houseman Junior Sportsmanship Award recipients, Bryce Pereira and Devon Jack, both graduated from San Marino High School and will continue their tennis careers as collegiate athletes. Pereira will join UCLA’s squad, while Jack currently attends Brown University. Incoming SCTA Board President Chris Lewis, himself a former recipient of the award, praised the student/athletes and their parents for bringing humility and pride to the game.
Member Organization of the Year included First Serve Santa Ana, in tandem with Kiwanis Club and Santa Ana Unified School District. First Serve’s Lew Bratcher accepted the award surrounded by members of his team, including players who have excelled in Santa Ana programs.
Various SCTA Service Awards were handed out, including those for Junior Tennis, Adult Tennis, Marketing, and Community Tennis. A complete list is below. The event was held at The Clubhouse at Los Angeles Tennis Center, and hosted by current SCTA President Bill Kellogg.
Henry Talbert Lifetime Achievement Award – Steve Tscherne
Curt Condon Spirit Award – Anthony Lara
Evelyn Houseman Junior Sportsmanship Award – Bryce Pereira & Devon Jack
Eugene Jung Multicultural Award – Alberto Ramos
SCTA Family of the Year – the Jim Kellogg family
SCTA Member Organization of the Year – Kiwanis Club of Santa Ana & Santa Ana Unified School District in partnership with First Serve Santa Ana
Service Award – Wheelchair Tennis – Lauren Haneke Hopps
Service Award – Junior Team Tennis – Debbie Mahdessian
Service Award – Competitive Junior Tennis – Kevin Pollock
Service Award – Grassroots Junior Tennis – Neil Johnson
Service Award – Tennis on Campus – Kelly Chan & Arjun Sarkar – Bruin Tennis Club
Service Award – Marketing Committee – Lisa Thomas
Service Award – Adult League Tennis – Gayle Hollenbaugh
Service Award – Community Tennis NJTL – Cheryl Olivas-Dieli & Lois Sczepaniak
Service Award – Coachella Valley – Gordon Zawtun
Service Award – Simi Valley – Suzi Aulicino