International Tennis Hall of Famer Tracy Austin and ATP Tour professional Steve Johnson, the most decorated singles player in Pac-12 history and a past Ojai champion, have been added to a special night honoring Pac-12 Commissioner Larry Scott at the upcoming 119th Ojai Tennis Tournament.
The special event will take place on Friday, April 26, at The Ojai Vineyard Tasting Room, located next to the tournament’s headquarters, Libbey Park, in downtown Ojai.
The event is a fundraiser for the Ojai Valley Tennis Club. Funds raised will be used to expand and support youth tennis programs and tournaments in Ojai, enhance Libbey Park and local school tennis facilities, and support The Ojai Tennis Tournament.
Scott, 54, has been the Pac-12 Commissioner since 2009. He previously served as chairman and CEO of the Women’s Tennis Association (WTA) and as president and COO of ATP Properties, a division of the Association of Tennis Professionals. Once a captain of the Harvard University tennis team, Scott went on to play on the ATP Tour in the mid-1980s.
The Pac-12 celebrated its 100-year anniversary in 2016 and named an All-Century team in which USC Trojan alumnus Johnson was honored as the Pac-12 Men’s Tennis Player of the Century.
Johnson, 29, won NCAA Division I team titles in all four seasons (2009-12). He won the NCAA Individual singles title and was the NCAA’s top-ranked player in 2011 and 2012. He finished his career at USC with 72 consecutive wins. Johnson was the 2011 and 2012 ITA Player of the Year and Pac-12 Player of the Year, and he was named to the 2009, 2010 and 2012 Pac-12 Doubles Team of the Year. Johnson is currently No. 39 in the ATP World Tour rankings.
Rolling Hills resident Austin is no stranger at The Ojai and was last year’s tournament honoree. She first burst onto the tennis scene in winning championships at The Ojai in 1977 (women’s open) and 1978 (Girls’ 16s), just one year before becoming the youngest player to win the U.S. Open at the age of 16. The former World No. 1 beat Martina Navratilova in the semifinals and Chris Evert in the final at that 1979 U.S. Open, and was later named that year’s Associated Press Female Athlete of the Year.
Austin compiled 30 pro singles titles and five doubles titles during her amazing career. Austin holds the distinction as being the youngest player to be inducted into the International Tennis Hall of Fame in 1992. She can be seen at tennis’ top events and has been the face of the U.S. Open for more than 20 years for USA Network and Tennis Channel. Her son, Brandon Holt, is a former Ojai CIF champion and is expected to compete in the Pac-12 Tennis Championships at the 119th Ojai (April 24-28) as the No. 1 player at USC.
The Dianne Miller Band will perform at the fundraising event, which will also include a Q&A session with Austin interviewing Scott and Johnson. Event tickets are available for $130 until sold out. For more information and to purchase tickets online, go to: www.TheOjai.net or click HERE.
In recent years, Ojai Tournament honorees have included Austin, former Grand Slam champion Rod Laver, former World No. 1, Wimbledon champion and USC All-American Stan Smith, and legendary, retired Stanford coach Dick Gould.