Conni has been a big part of The Racket Club for most of her life. Beginning with group lessons at the age of ten, Conni has taken her passion for the game onto the instructional side and is now the club’s Director of Tennis. By understanding the unique challenges and opportunities that junior players face, she excels at teaching our future stars.
Being one of The Racket Club’s longest tenured professionals means John has left an impression on just about anyone lucky enough to work with him. As both an instructor and as the area’s premier stringer, John takes great pride in his work. You can find John on court with his adult lesson groups and ladies travel teams. Otherwise, he will be hard at work in the stringing room. Either way, you are sure to be pleased with the results.
It is not surprising that Crystal Lake South High School’s career record holder in IHSA state tournament points has become an esteemed professional instructor. It is also very exciting that this man, Scott Meier, is an important part of The Racket Club’s professional staff. Scott’s infectiously positive attitude on the court keeps him plenty busy with the private groups that demand his attention all year long.
Mark is a local talent who honed his craft at an early age on the courts of The Racket Club. That talent took him to the greatest heights of collegiate tennis, culminating in a key role on nationally-ranked Gustavus Adolphus College’s varsity team. Mark is a true natural with children, as evidenced by his “other” career as an elementary school teacher. Students of all ages and levels benefit from Mark’s wide breadth of experience.
When Nick isn’t teaching high schoolers the principles of science, he can be found at the Racket Club teaching the principles of tennis. Dad-taught back in 5th grade, Nick has played high school varsity, Northwestern University club, and now adult league tennis. Teaching experience includes several years of summer privates and he now focuses his efforts towards beginner and intermediate elementary through high school players.
A career in accounting may have taken this Delaware high school state finalist away from tennis, but Tom is now retired, still playing tennis, and wanting to help build the next generation of players. Tom enjoys showing (mostly) beginners and intermediates how to play tennis with a focus on having fun and building solid foundations in footwork, stroke preparation, execution and singles & doubles strategy.
At one time The Racket Club’s head professional, Mark now teaches a reduced schedule but still makes a big impact on his devoted protégées. With high school All-State honors and a sixth place finish in the IHSA doubles tournament, valuable contributions as a varsity tennis player at Marquette University and over twenty years of experience as an instructor, Mark can count on being in demand at all times.
Fortunately for the tennis world, a man of many talents like Tom — architecture, art, education, spirituality — has found that there is still room in his life to teach at The Racket Club. Tom’s enthusiasm brims over and his students pick up on it immediately, inspiring them. The theme behind Tom’s approach is for his students to not only learn the game, but to enjoy it. It only figures that he is a pioneer in the 10 & Under Tennis movement.
A man of many interests, Brian has worked his way up from casual player in high school to certified teaching professional. His passion really took off around age 30 as a player at (naturally!) The Racket Club. He began studying the technical side of the game while honing his own skills. Before long, he realized that helping others improve their play was equally fulfilling. Maybe when he is not camping or canoeing, he can do the same for you!
Spend any time at all on court with Will and you will quickly realize he has found his true calling. Growing up a few miles south in Elgin, Will played tennis for Larkin High, more of a football school, yet still managed to dominate Upstate Eight Conference play. He continued to showcase his talent at Bradley University. After college, Will perfected his teaching skills at Centre Court in Hanover Park, where he was Head Pro for several years.
Always-upbeat Jeff has always been one of The Racket Club’s biggest hitting players, and it was only a matter of time before he became one of our biggest hitting pros. Jeff was a standout player in high school and enjoys playing tennis for the fun of the game, which shines through in his teaching. Rather than focusing solely on winning and losing, he shows his students how to enjoy tennis as a healthy and social activity as well as a competition.
Watching Maria at tennis certainly does not lead one to believe only as a high school senior did she take up the sport, but it’s true! What started out as a means to have fun competition quickly led to Elgin Community College varsity and Illinois State University club tennis, and now Maria is showing a new generation of players how to play. Both technical and relatable in delivery, Maria genuinely enjoys helping others and it shows.
Native Waukegian Betsy grew up enjoying park district tennis and played tennis and badminton for Waukegan East High School. A grad of one of the select few accredited Professional Tennis Management programs (Ferris State University), Betsy was also a top player on the college tennis team. Her fun, progression-driven approach to teaching has previously benefited Heritage Tennis Club and The Racquet Club of Lake Bluff.
Andrew’s enthusiasm for teaching tennis may only be matched or surpassed by his appetite for food -- although you would never know it from looking at him, he claims he is well-known for eating copious amounts! The Ferris State University Professional Tennis Management program and summers teaching at Royal Melbourne Country Club have prepared Andrew well, and he loves teaching technique with the assistance of video technology.
High-energy Sterling is a proud parent and proud coach who has led many of his Elgin Academy varsity players to the state tournament. He learned the game a little later than some -- as a sophomore at Larkin High School -- but made up for lost time by passionately devoting himself to his new favorite sport. The ride continued as a player at Elgin Community College. Sterling aims to succeed, yes, but also have fun while doing so!
“The Natural” -- that’s Adolfo. His strokes could not be smoother, and neither could his demeanor. Everyone loves how the former McHenry County College men’s tennis ace relates to his students with down-to-earth advice that can be quickly and easily incorporated. Adolfo’s gift for conveying information in its most digestible form has really energized our program...that, and his 120 mph serve!
Katie’s a homegrown talent who got her start in the Racket Club lesson program as a youngster. That led to a co-captaincy of Crystal Lake South High School’s varsity squad and from there, she learned coaching under the legendary Don Nead at Crystal Lake Country Club’s summer program. Now teaching middle school English as her day job, Katie unwinds as an instructor at The Racket Club and gets to experience that fun again!
Few figures in the local tennis scene are as respected as Craig Greenwald. The galvanizing pro’s state tournament appearances as a player at Prairie Ridge High School cemented his place among the best, and then his national finishes at McHenry County College edged him into G.O.A.T. status there. He later competed for Roosevelt University, too. With a fun, down-to-earth way of delivering instruction, Craig is always in demand.