AETNA to sponsor children’s activities
August 23, 2012
HARTFORD, Conn. ― For the second year, Aetna (NYSE: AET) is sponsoring children’s activities at the US Open and is determined to deliver twice the fun as part of its three-year sponsorship agreement with the United States Tennis Association (USTA). Aetna’s sponsorship provides support for children’s activities on Arthur Ashe Kids Day on August 25; the Arthur Ashe Essay & Art Contest Luncheon on August 26; and the ICON Awards on September 4. Beyond the US Open, Aetna and the USTA will continue delivering community-based programs that bring tennis to children in urban neighborhoods nationwide.
“Working together, USTA Serves and Aetna will transform Court #6 on Arthur Ashe Kids Day into a dynamic, fun-filled, kid-zone dedicated to fitness and tennis skills, with the goal of bringing the joy of tennis to every child who attends this outstanding day of family fun,” said Floyd W. Green, III, vice president and head of Community Relations and Urban Marketing. “We are proud to be a part of this special day which honors the brilliant legacy of Arthur Ashe, who was a significant part of the Aetna community. We believe Mr. Ashe would also be pleased with the work we are doing to connect more children across the country to the sport he loved so much, through school-based tennis programs, particularly in major urban centers.”
Following his brilliant tennis career, Ashe served on the Aetna board of directors from 1982 until his death in 1993. Annually since 1994, the Aetna Voice of Conscience Awards have been presented to identify and honor people who emulate Ashe’s commitment to humanitarian ideals and who labor with little thought to their own advancement or recognition. The award was created as an expression of thanks to Ashe, who also served as chairman of the board of the Aetna Foundation, the company’s philanthropic organization.
Aetna’s three-year sponsorship agreement includes the following.
USTA Serves/Aetna Tennis Skills court
Co-sponsorship of a tennis court of fun physical activities with USTA Serves, the National Charitable Foundation of the USTA, during Arthur Ashe Kids Day on August 25. The “USTA Serves/Aetna Tennis Skills”court will feature stations to keep kids moving and engaged through a number of tennis and physical activities.
Arthur Ashe Essay & Art Contest Luncheon
Sponsorship of the Arthur Ashe Essay & Art Contest Luncheon on Sunday, August 26. The luncheon will honor the 14 national 2012 Arthur Ashe Essay & Art Contest (AAEAC) winners who will attend for a weekend full of celebration and experiential learning. During the luncheon, each of the national AAEAC winners will address the audience about the personal impact of the contest and the weekend. An event of the USTA’s National Junior Tennis and Learning (NJTL) network, which was founded by Ashe, the luncheon is hosted annually by former NYC Mayor David Dinkins in the hospitality area on the grounds of the US Open the day before the tournament begins.
Other invitees will be luminaries who represent a cross-section of achievement from the corporate, political, entertainment and social sectors and who have demonstrated a commitment to diversity and inclusion. Past attendees include former New York City Mayor David Dinkins, Pulitzer Prize-winning author Junot Díaz, actor Jeffrey Wright, baseball legend Frank Robinson and former CNN anchor Tony Harris.
Part of the program will also include a “Year in Review” of the 2011-12 Aetna ICON School Grants. These grants helped introduce tennis to diverse populations in afterschool elementary programs across the country. The grants included education and nutrition components. A second round of Aetna ICON School grantees will be announced later this year.