ITHF exceeds fundraising goal

September 12, 2015

NEWPORT, R.I. – The Capital Campaign Committee of the International Tennis Hall of Fame is thrilled to announce that fundraising on the Match Point Capital Campaign has now exceeded its $15 million goal.

“Three years ago we embarked on the largest capital campaign in International Tennis Hall of Fame history. After three years of hard work by the Capital Campaign Committee and especially by Chairman Ed Woolard, I’m very pleased to announce that the campaign has exceeded its goal and, in fact, construction on the improvement projects that will result from the campaign is already more than 70 percent complete,” said International Tennis Hall of Fame Chairman Christopher Clouser.

Clouser first shared the exciting news of the campaign’s completion this morning at the Annual Meeting of the International Tennis Hall of Fame’s Board of Directors.

The Match Point Capital Campaign set out to raise funds for four specific goals that would significantly improve the Hall of Fame’s programming and facilities. Construction on these projects will be completed in the coming months, with the entire project set be completed and dedicated in May 2016.

The campaign was focused on:

ITHF CEO Todd Martin commented, “The success and progress of the Match Point Capital Campaign is a tremendous accomplishment for the Hall of Fame and for our sport. We are thrilled to have achieved the fundraising and completed so much of the construction in such a timely manner.”

He continued, “The new museum offers a world-class experience for visitors and it has been designed in a way that will enable us to bring its content out to tennis fans around the world in the coming years. With the new, expanded tennis facilities, we’ll seek to host additional large scale tennis events and to get more people playing the game. The results of the capital campaign lay the groundwork for a very bright future for the International Tennis Hall of Fame and we look forward to building on this great progress to enhance our overall outreach and programming.”

The Match Point Capital Campaign Committee ultimately achieved its goal through securing a broad mix of support from more than 120 generous contributors, including board members, Hall of Famers, tennis industry organizations, Newport-based foundations, Newport citizens, and tennis enthusiasts around the world.

“We are so grateful to the donors from around the world who believe in this vision for a bright future for the International Tennis Hall of Fame, and for our sport. Their contributions are making that vision become a reality. The smallest contribution was a dollar and the largest was a million dollars. Everyone who gave – be it financially or in sharing their time and expertise – played a valuable role in this project and in securing the future of the International Tennis Hall of Fame,” said Clouser.

The Capital Campaign Committee, which was made up of volunteers from the ITHF Board of Directors and co-chaired by Clouser and Woolard, was comprised of John Arnhold, who served as treasurer, Jane Brown Grimes, Butch Buchholz, Donald Dell, Barbara Georgescu, Guillaume de Ramel, Alan Hassenfeld, Kevin Kane, Stephen Lewinstein, Richard J. Phelps, John Reese, and Nancy von Auersperg.

Clouser said, “In addition to our generous donors and dedicated Campaign Committee, we are grateful to the leadership staff of the International Tennis Hall of Fame, particularly CEO Todd Martin, Museum Director Doug Stark, and former CEO and now special projects advisor Mark Stenning. We would also like to thank our dedicated partners who made it possible – the City of Newport, Behan Brothers Construction, Dan Paquette, who served as our owner’s representative on the project, and Terry Healy of HealyKohler Design, who led the museum re-design efforts. Additionally, we extend our gratitude to those who believe in the value and vision of this project and who supported it through donations of their time and talent. We particularly thank Roger Federer who donated his time to creating a fabulous hologram exhibit in the museum and the ATP, WTA, ITF, USTA, and other international tennis organizations and players around the world who have contributed to the museum in many ways.”

In May of this year, the Hall of Fame opened a completely new museum as a result of the capital campaign. The new museum exhibits a modern design and a much more engaging experience for tennis fans, thanks to the inclusion of state-of-the-art technology including the hologram of Roger Federer, as well as a completely new interpretation of the museum collection and newly designed exhibits.

Since May 2014, construction has been underway on another major component of the campaign – a new three-court indoor tennis facility, as well as the addition of three outdoor courts with a seasonal bubble for year-round use. The courts are adjacent to a significant new building that will house the tennis club locker rooms, a fitness center, retail space, and office space for the Hall of Fame staff. The buildings total 36,000 square feet and were designed in a manner that complements the historic architecture of the existing Hall of Fame buildings and significantly enhances the surrounding neighborhood.

A new indoor tennis facility with three courts, three new indoor / outdoor courts, and a significant new building to house Hall of Fame offices, tennis club locker rooms and fitness facilities, and retail space are part of the projects resulting from the campaign. The new tennis facilities will create opportunities for new events and increased tennis programming to get people in the game.

There are two final construction components of the campaign projects that will be completed in the coming months. An entirely new grandstand will be constructed on the South Side of Bill Talbert Center Court, and the box seats along the East Side of the court will be enhanced. Additionally, the museum’s main entrance on historic Bellevue Avenue will be completely restored.

The entire project will be dedicated in May 2016, ahead of next year’s Hall of Fame Tennis Championships.

Clouser stated, “The improvement projects of the Match Point Capital Campaign – the new museum, tennis courts, and improved stadium – create tremendous opportunities to bring many new visitors to the Hall of Fame and to engage tennis fans from around the world in our mission to preserve and promote the history of tennis and to inspire its future. We are all looking forward to a great celebration in May 2016 when we will officially dedicate the entire project.

“That said, the International Tennis Hall of Fame’s work to serve the sport of tennis is never complete. The Capital Campaign has created opportunities for a variety of new programming – from museum exhibits to additional tennis programs on our new courts. Now that we have laid the groundwork, our team will be hard at work to further develop the programs and services of the International Tennis Hall of Fame. There are still ways that the tennis world and local community can support these efforts – contributions to our annual fund, naming of seats in the new stadium, naming of tribute bricks on the Hall of Fame property, memberships, and other programs provide ways to get involved. We welcome the support and we encourage tennis enthusiasts around the world to plan a visit.”