Linda Johnson ’89
Snafus better not be on the menu when a former U.S. president comes to town to honor a revered tennis great.That goes double when the town is Newport, Rhode Island, and the event is the International Tennis Hall of Fame induction ceremonies, the culmination of “Tennis Week.”
Linda Johnson, public relations manager of the Tennis Hall of Fame in Newport, remembers Chris Evert’s 1995 Hall of Fame induction as “a year-long event. It was fantastic.” Former President George Bush, a friend of Evert’s, was in attendance that evening as Evert’s presenter. “It was very exciting to have a president on hand,” said Johnson. “Chrissie was extremely gracious and a wonderful person.”
Johnson started as an intern at the Hall of Fame in 1990 and that eventually led to her present position. As public relations manager, she is involved in marketing activities that include advertising and working on all special events that take place within the Hall of Fame complex and its museum.
Another part of Tennis Week and Johnson’s chores at Newport include the Hall of Fame Tennis Championships and the Hall of Fame Women’s Invitational Tournament, two events held on the grass courts of the ornate Newport Casino, part of the Tennis Hall of Fame. The tournaments are the only sanctioned events held on grass in the United States.
The highlight of Tennis Week, however, is always the Hall of Fame induction ceremonies. This past July, Rosie Casals and the late “Voice of Wimbledon” Dan Maskell were the 1996 inductees.
Information courtesy of the Coulter Press, publishers of The Item of Clinton, Mass.