History

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Milestones in EPATT's History

(1988 - present)

1988 -- Founded by former Stanford All-American, Jeff Arons.  Originally conceived as a “summer, tennis-only” program, conducted on leftover courts of the closed “Ravenswood High School.”  Founding Advisors:

  • Paul “Red” Fay, Former Undersecretary of the Navy (JFK)

  • Jack Gifford, Founder and CEO, Maxim Integrated Circuits

  • Dick Gould, Men’s Tennis Coach, Stanford University

 1989 - Program visited by Jack Kemp of HUD.  Then, these courts were also torn down.

1990 - Money raised to build four courts -- the only courts in East Palo Alto! -- on the site of Caesar Chavez Middle School.  EPATT becomes year-round program.

1991 - Academic component added.  Hired first Academic Director, Dee Dee Terzian.

1992 - East Palo Alto earns title of “Murder Capital of the United States"  for having the highest per capita murder rate in the U.S.

1993 – Initiated Annual Dinner fundraiser.  Built four more courts at Cesar Chavez Academy to meet demand.

1994 -- Added after-school tutoring by Stanford students via Haas Center for Public Service students in Chavez school classrooms.  Over 70 Stanford University students are transported to East Palo Alto weekly to provide academic tutoring for students.

1995 – EPATT receives national recognition.  Featured nationally on CNN and "CBS Evening News” as a symbol of hope for the East Palo Alto.  EPATT featured in Tennis Magazine.

 1997 - Courts removed space needed due to mandated class size reduction to 25 to make space for portable classrooms, parking, etc.  Classrooms used for after-school tutoring burned down. 

1998 - Program moves to Stanford University’s new Taube Tennis Center, with a new Executive Director and a new Academic Director.

1999 - One million dollars raised in one evening to build out classrooms under tennis stadium seating and to lights the tennis courts.

2000 - Staff offices move from Haas Center to Taube Tennis Center.  Vans donated for transporting EPA students to Stanford.  Original format expanded to include one and a half hours of daily after school one-on-one tutoring by Stanford students and one hour of daily tennis instruction. Over 100 students and 100 tutors involved daily. 

2002 - Named one of top three tennis and tutoring programs in U.S. by Tennis Week Magazine.

2003 – EPATT implements its Parent Component.

2004 - Receives Stanford University’s first Annual “Community Service Award” as a benchmark outreach program.

2008 - Named by First Serve as nation’s #1 after-school tennis and tutoring program.  Considered the model such program in the U.S., and visited by people from throughout the country to see “how EPATT works.”

2009 -- After 12 years under the YTA organization, EPATT becomes an independent non profit 501(c)(3) organization.  Stanford signs five-year facility use extension.

2011 - EPATT reaches back out to the community with introductory tennis on resurrected court space and basic group academics in EPA. 

2012 – During the U.S. Open tennis tournament, CBS Sports aired a nationwide tribute to Arthur Ashe featuring a special film about EPATT.

2016 - Receives Stanford University’s first “Community Partnership Legacy Award” in recognition of continued initiative, leadership and involvement in efforts that benefit the overall community.