Jennifer Bishop picked up a tennis racquet when Debby Boone’s song titled “You Light Up My Life” was the number one song in Canada. Since then, Bishop has turned the switch, and done just about everything in the sport she has been passionate about. Bishop is giving back to the sport that she says has given her so much on and off the tennis court.
“When I started playing tennis again as an adult, I was quickly reacquainted with my love of tennis, and really just started looking for ways to give back to the sport that has given me so much. The importance of giving back was instilled in me by my parents.” – said Bishop
Her late father Gerry was instrumental in getting the province of Newfoundland and Labrador its first and only indoor tennis facility – which still stands today – so it’s no wonder Bishop has followed in his footsteps of giving back to the sport. Her involvement in tennis has gone from volunteering with the renowned Doug Philpott Inner City Children’s tennis fund to helping at the Toronto Lawn, along with Seniors tennis. It was this involvement that eventually led her toward lending her expertise to Tennis Canada. It was a natural progression: “I felt that as though my professional training, my experience as a player, and the fact that I grew up on the east coast could add value to the team,” she said. The former Top 5 and junior national doubles champion feels that resilience is the biggest thing she’s learned along the way by competing at the highest levels in junior tennis, and now on the International seniors tour, where she has represented Canada and achieved a Top 5 International ranking. It’s this type of competitiveness that allows her to take on the challenges of steering the National body at Tennis Canada through these challenging times as the President and Chair of its Board of Directors.
Bishop has been a role model to players from Newfoundland for many years, and continues to inspire females in the province. Her advice to women wanting to make a difference: “Believe in yourself when others do not. Women must champion each other, look for opportunities for each other. Raise your hand, and get comfortable with feeling uncomfortable.”
Our professional players are making the rest of the world take notice of Canada on the biggest stage of tennis.
“Thanks to Steve Stevens and Irwin Tobias and the support of Tennis Canada, Canadian teams are ranking amongst the best in the World with individuals and teams coming home with medals, World No. 1 rankings and top 5 finishes. Tennis in Canada is thriving on so many levels” explained Bishop.
By Mike Meaney, Contributing Editor
Editor’s Note: We also encourage you to read Tennis Canada’s article on their Gender Equality Initiative with National Bank