Making a Difference
By Gertrude Mann, Member Since 1974
One of the busiest places on The Reef these days is the Tennis & Games Center. Just pass by any morning. You’ll probably see golf carts, cars and scooters filling the parking spaces, and lots of activity inside on the courts. Tennis Committee Chairman Kevin Fish is enthusiastic about what’s going on with games and lessons for all. He talks about his job as newly appointed Chairman and why he and his wife Sandra can spend three hours every day happily playing tennis. He says, “Jimmy Morton and his staff are phenomenal. We’ve played at many tennis centers in our travels. None can compare with what we have here. I didn’t play a lot of tennis while growing up. My interests were football and baseball, but now tennis is both a passion and a pleasure. We took a lesson from Jimmy in 2013 and knew we’d found our new home. We rented for a while and then bought our house on Cinnamon Bark. We spend the season here but take our boat to Nantucket and Newport for sport fishing in the summer. I learned how to fish from my father, the late Edward Fish.”
An early memory of Ocean Reef was of a boat trip to Key West with his father and little brother. Kevin remembers returning to the old Medical Center for an emergency with his brother’s finger, after which his father, a Club Member, bought a boat slip and a house. It was 1981. Kevin recalls an Ocean Reef with few of today’s facilities and amenities. He says, “The Burgee Bar was a hut with a few plastic chairs and a pinball machine. We came often from our home in Boston. I always loved Ocean Reef and admired the people who worked here.”
Kevin’s goals as Chairman for tennis are to work closely with his dedicated committee to continue to serve the Members with an excellent program. He constantly talks to players, gets their ideas for new experiences, and conversely, wants to hear about what isn’t happening that might enhance the Tennis Center. Kevin credits Director Jim Morton for listening to all comments and implementing changes. He says the Morton Machine generates the energy and excitement of playing tennis at the Center. It is due to Jim’s dedication to the Members. “It’s all about the Members,” Kevin says. “We want to do the right thing for them.”
Kevin reiterates the excellence of the Tennis Center staff. They include Jim Morton, Director of Tennis, Justin Romero, Head Tennis Pro, Alex Henderson, Assistant Pro, Bradley Mixson, Assistant Pro, Spencer Newman, Assistant Pro, Michael Balcom, Head Pickleball Pro, Maintenance Staff- Jesus Quinones, Supervisor, Jesus Gonzales, and Joel Perez, Tennis Pro Shop- Giselle Turner, Supervisor and Buyer, Anayeli Galindo, and Jennifer Martinez.
A new tennis initiative of a Tournament between Associates and Members is open to all. This past October, there were 20 players in each category. Forty players enjoyed the fun of the game and the delicious lunch, sponsored and provided by Kevin Fish.
Our Tennis Chairman sums up his role when he says, “Dedicated leadership surrounded by good people brings good results. Come and play with us. You’ll find a warm welcome at the Tennis & Games Center.”