NJTL Essay Winner 2020


USTA Foundation Youth Essay Contest Winners Announced


ATLANTA – October 20, 2020 United States Tennis Association (USTA) Southern announced the selection of seven young tennis players as state winners of the 2020 USTA Foundation NJTL Essay Contest today.


The seven will receive a $100 Tennis Warehouse gift card, a US Open tennis bag and a certificate from the USTA Foundation. The winning essays were selected out of nearly 200 entries from 18 chapters in seven Southern states.


“Due to COVID, the winners did not have the opportunity to attend the Winston-Salem Open in North Carolina this year,” said USTA Southern Director, of Diversity, NJTL & Grants Cee Jai Jones. “But I am very proud that so many youngsters submitted essays. We hope that next year USTA Southern will have a national winner and that he or she can experience the coveted trip to New York for the Arthur Ashe Kids Day Weekend at the US Open.”


Vielyana Kim, mother of Calvin Kim, said, “We are honored that his essay was chosen as the best in Alabama! Thank you for the opportunity for him to reflect and learn through this essay contest. He is trying to save and earn money (by stringing other people's tennis racquets) to buy a new racquet for himself and the gift certificate would help him get closer to his goal. I pray and told him that this achievement should encourage him to always be humble and serve others.”



City, State       

NJTL Chapter

Calvin Kim

Tuscaloosa, Ala.

Tuscaloosa Tennis Association NJTL

Nyla Warner


Coach Wink’s NJTL

Kansas Perry

Louisville, Ky.

Rising Stars of Kentucky

Micah Pierce

New Orleans

Excite All-Stars

Ani’Jawaun Wilson

Greenville, Miss.       

Greenville CTA NJTL

George-Luca Duma

Wilmington, N.C.

One Love Tennis

Peter Smith III

St. George, S.C.

St. George Youth Sports League


For a gallery of downloadable winners, click here.


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The USTA is the national governing body for the sport of tennis in the U.S. and the leader in promoting and developing the growth of tennis at every level from local communities to the highest level of the professional game. It owns and operates the US Open, the largest annually attended sporting event in the world, and launched the US Open Series linking six summer tournaments to the US Open. In addition, it owns about 90 Pro Circuit events throughout the U.S., and selects the teams for the Davis Cup, Fed Cup, Olympic and Paralympic games. A not-for-profit organization with more than 519,000 members, it invests 100 percent of its proceeds in growing the game. It is divided into 17 sections, of which USTA Southern is the largest. The 131,000 USTA members living in Alabama, Arkansas, Georgia, Kentucky, Louisiana, Mississippi, North Carolina, South Carolina and Tennessee make up USTA Southern, and account for 25 percent of the total USTA membership. A professional staff housed in Peachtree Corners, Ga., carries out USTA Southern’s daily operations, but policy is formed and much of the organization’s work is executed via a board and committee structure of more than 200 volunteers. For more information about the types of programs and services offered by USTA Southern, visit www.SouthernTennis.com and www.USTA.com/Southern.


Media Contact: Ron Cioffi, USTA Southern, W: 678-527-2111, C: 770-378-7856, cioffi@sta.usta.com




Youth Name/Preferred Name: Kansas Perry


Birthdate/Age: August 11th, 2004/ 16 years old   


Grade & School: Junior (11th) DuPont Manual High School


Number of Brothers: 0 Number of Sisters: 2


Name & Number of Pets and what kind: Two dogs Pitbull (Peanut) & a Shih tzu (Skylar)


How many years has youth been playing tennis? 8 years


Favorite thing about tennis: The adrenaline during a long rally


Favorite tennis shot/stroke:  Overhead shot


What is Youth’s favorite subject in school and why?

My favorite subject is English because I enjoy writing in my freetime.


Future Career Goal: Photographer & writer


List Favorite Male & Female Professional Tennis Player and why?

My favorite female tennis player is Naomi Osaka because she is a good sport, and very confident, When she plays she appears confident on the outside. Aside from that she is also an activist in the Black Lives Matter movement. My favorite male tennis player is Roger Federer because he always seems so upbeat when he plays and he appears confident.


List other Hobbies, Interests and Talents:

 Singing, listening to music, playing animal crossing, writing, and photography.