TOM Conference brings together leading experts

January 31, 2017

Tennis facility and club management experts, along with sports and fitness industry executives, will share their knowledge, experience and expertise at the 2017 Tennis Owners & Managers (TOM) Conference, March 27-29, at the award-winning Rosen Shingle Creek Resort in Orlando, Fla.

Presented by the Tennis Industry Association (TIA), the fourth annual TOM Conference brings together leading experts in facility management, programming, technology, sales & marketing, staffing and other key areas to provide vital information that will address the needs of all types of tennis facilities—public, commercial, private, country clubs, resorts, etc.

The conference also will include a “Future of Tennis Forum,” the inaugural “Tennis Innovation Challenge” competition, specialty courses, roundtable discussions, a Resource Center, and a field trip to and evening activities at the new, 100-court USTA National Campus. TOM conference sessions and specialty courses are eligible for continuing education credits for PTR and USPTA members.

To register for the TOM Conference, which immediately follows the nearby USTA Annual Meeting, visit

Future of Tennis Forum

The 2017 TOM Conference will open on Monday, March 27, with the Future of Tennis Forum, at which top industry officials will present the latest news and data about the state of the tennis industry and look ahead to ways to grow the business of tennis.

Speakers at the Forum will include TIA President Jeff Williams, managing partner of the Tennis Media Co.; TIA Executive Director Jolyn de Boer; Sports Marketing Surveys Vice President Keith Storey; Dr. Jack Groppel, co-founder of the Johnson & Johnson Human Performance Institute; global youth sports and performance expert Dr. Gregory Rose; Dr. Stuart Miller, the senior executive director of the International Tennis Federation; and Craig Morris, the general manager of Community Tennis/Youth Tennis for the U.S. Tennis Association (USTA).

Tennis Innovation Challenge

The morning will include the inaugural “Tennis Innovation Challenge,” a “Shark-Tank”-like competition in which the three finalists (who were chosen among online applicants) present their innovative tennis product or service to a panel of judges—and an audience of industry leaders and tennis facility owners and managers. The competition will be moderated by Carlos Salum, president of the leadership, performance and strategy firm Salum International Resources.

Tennis Health and Wellness Panel

The Conference will include a Tennis Health & Wellness Panel that will focus on how the tennis industry and its businesses should use health and wellness messaging to attract more people to the game and encourage active, healthy lifestyles through sports.

The panel will be led by Dr. Jack Groppel, co-founder of the Johnson & Johnson Human Performance Institute and the Health & Wellness Advisor for the tennis industry, and will include Dr. Brian Hainline, chief medical officer for the NCAA and former longtime chief medical officer for the US Open; Dr. Paul Roetert, CEO of SHAPE America (Society of Health and Physical Educators) and former managing director of USTA Player Development; and Tom Richards, the director of corporate engagement for the American Council on Exercise (ACE).

TOM Conference Sessions

Throughout the TOM Conference, tennis facility owners and managers will hear from key speakers in the industry and participate in roundtables and panel discussions on topics important to the growth of their businesses and the game overall.

Disney Institute executive Brent Centlivre will talk about the secrets and best practices for excellent customer service. Entrepreneur, philanthropist and WTT Washington Kastles founder/owner Mark Ein will present “Best Lessons I’ve Learned in Business,” and former pro player Tommy Ho, a business leader and member of the USTA Board of Directors, will present on the “Secrets of Hiring & Leadership.”

“Critical Legal Issues Facing Today’s Tennis Facilities” will be moderated by facility consultant Doug Cash and feature facility managers and legal experts including Peter Brewer, Jordan Schwartz and Joe Wang.

Roundtable topics, featuring experts in their areas, will include “The Tennis Facility of the Future” and “Is Your Facility as Tech Savvy as Your Members?” A session featuring Virgin Active executive Gary Stewart, and tennis facility executives Ajay Pant, Michael Mahoney and Mike Woody will tackle “How to Grow Your Tennis Base.”

The “Creating New Revenue” series will include segments on “Re-Thinking Sales & Marketing,” with club consultant and marketing expert Casey Conrad; “Re-Thinking Retail,” with a panel that includes entrepreneur and marketing strategist Mike Volkin, Dave Emkey of Fromuth Tennis, U.S. Racquet Stringers Association Executive Director Bob Patterson, Stringjob LLC founder Matt Colton, and Sean Barkulis of ShopKeep; and “Re-Thinking Fitness,” featuring Virgin Active’s Simon Pearson, Cardio Tennis Global Education Director Michele Krause, and USTA National Tennis Center Director of Tennis Whitney Kraft.

Specialty Courses

On Sunday afternoon, March 26, prior to the official start of the TOM Conference, there will be two specialty courses designed to help tennis club owners and managers with their businesses. To sign up for either course, visit

Financial expert Jim Bates of Sports Club Advisors will present an interactive “Value Enhancement Workshop,” which will focus on the strategic management process relating to business value, professional and business goals, and business value enhancement.

Greg Lappin, longtime industry consultant and former national tennis director for Life Time Fitness, will present a specialty course on “Dynamic Leadership and Improved Staff Performance: Result Guaranteed!” The interactive session will explain how to be a dynamic leader and how to build a successful and cohesive team of employees.

Visit to USTA National Campus

The TOM Conference will also include a visit and dinner at the new, 100-court USTA National Campus, the “Home of American Tennis,” which opened to the public Jan. 2. Kurt Kamperman, the USTA’s chief executive of Community Tennis & USTA National Campus, will be on hand to welcome TOM attendees and describe how the state-of-the-art tennis facility—one of the largest in the world—will play an integral role in helping tennis providers to grow the sport. The visit will also include a POP Tennis demonstration.

Resource Center and Networking

TOM attendees will have an opportunity to learn about the latest tennis products, services and trends at the Resource Center (trade show), which also offers exhibitors a unique chance to have their products and services in front of hundreds of potential clients. “Networking Breaks,” at which attendees are encouraged to meet with their peers, will take place in the Resource Center.

The conference also includes a welcome cocktail reception on Monday, March 27, lunch on Tuesday, and dinner at the USTA National Campus during the site visit on Tuesday.

Visit for more details and to register for the conference, and to apply for the Tennis Industry Innovation Challenge, or call the TIA at 843-686-3036 or email [email protected] for more information.