LTA appoints seven new members to its council in drive towards inclusion and diversity in tennis

The LTA has appointed seven new members to its council as part of its drive to make tennis a more diverse and accessible sport.

In an open letter last June, LTA chief executive Scott Lloyd said he wanted tennis “to be open to anyone” as he acknowledged “we haven’t done enough” to make the sport inclusive.

The LTA board-nominated councillors will each serve for a minimum of three and a maximum of nine years, tasked with helping to grow the sport, including coach development and support, volunteer engagement alongside inclusion and diversity.

Of the new appointees, four are men and three are women, four are of colour, two have declared they are part of an underrepresented group, while three are of a significantly younger age.

Joining the LTA Council, which consists of 54 volunteer councillors, are:

  • Lottie Birdsall-Strong – Ex-women’s football player with Arsenal; recently appointed to the ECB
  • Yasmin Clarke – Former professional player; coach to brother Jay, world No 204 in singles
  • Jonathon Dawes – Final year A-Level student; LTA Award winner for Young Person of the Year 2019
  • Wasim Haq – Two years at the FA Council and a member of the FA Inclusion Advisory Board
  • Judith Loffhagen – Club tennis player and parent of ATP professional on LTA pathway; involved in England Netball as player and coach
  • Adrian Packer – Founder and CEO of the CORE Education Trust which manages schools in disadvantaged areas
  • Shiv Paul – Creator of a documentary film about LGBTQ+ amateur tennis players that started the USTA’s annual Pride Events

Newly-appointed LTA Councillor Yasmin Clarke said: “I am passionate about growing and developing tennis in the UK and the LTA’s vision of seeing it opened and accessible to all.

“As councillors, I believe we have a unique perspective and set of skills to push diversity and inclusion at every level of the game.”

LTA President David Rawlinson, chair of the council, said: “We are making progress on our commitment to embed inclusion and diversity throughout what we do, and these appointments will help us continue that.

“They collectively bring with them a diverse range of experience and views that will be of real value to us in our work to achieve our vision of opening up tennis and making it a sport for anyone, no matter their age, background, gender or ability.”

British tennis’ governing body is due to announce its new inclusion and diversity strategy later this year.

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