Women Who Ace Conference & Achievement Award - USTA Southern California
Women Who Ace

Women Who Ace
Conference &
Achievement Award

As we celebrate the 50th anniversary of Title IX, the Women Who Ace Conference will showcase inspiring sports industry leaders and athletes, sharing skills for success on and off the court, pitch, track, etc.

The schedule includes a morning empowerment session, lunch, networking, and afternoon panels. The day will conclude with the presentation of the first annual Women Who Ace Achievement Award, followed by a reception honoring Sherri Stephens for her storied career as head coach of the University of San Diego Toreros Women’s Tennis Team.

Please join us on August 5th for a day of inspiration and celebration!

Friday, August 5, 2022
Conference and Panels – 9:00am to 5:00pm
Award and Reception – 5:15pm to 7:30pm

University of San Diego
Peace and Justice Theater
Garden of the Sea (Lunch and Evening Reception)
5998 Alcala Park, San Diego, CA 92110

For more information about registration and sponsorships, contact Benay Weintraub at bweintraub@scta.usta.com or (901) 574-0105.

United States Tennis Association

The Southern California section of the United States Tennis Association, the national governing body of tennis. 

University of San Diego

USD’s focus on academic and athletic excellence empowers innovative, confident, original thinkers to make positive contributions by confronting humanity’s urgent challenges in places near and far.

Intercollegiate Tennis Association

Intercollegiate Tennis Association (ITA) is the governing body of college tennis, overseeing men’s and women’s varsity tennis at all levels – NCAA Divisions I, II and III, NAIA and Junior/Community College.

Athletes Unlimited

Athletes Unlimited is a mission-driven network of next generation professional sports leagues, aiming to empower athletes as leaders, promote inclusive ownership focused on long-term financial and personal well-being of athletes, and bring fans closer to the game by innovating on and off the field.

Professional Tennis Registry

Professional Tennis Registry (PTR) is one of the leading organizations to educate, certify and serve tennis professionals. PTRW was built around giving female coaches opportunity, the tools for them to believe they can, the workshops to build their skills, and the networking for them to connect and be a part of something bigger.

Wilson Sporting Goods

Wilson is the #1 brand in tennis and the official hard goods sponsor of USTA Southern California.

Southern California Tennis Association Foundation

The Southern California Tennis Association Foundation is the charitable arm of USTA Southern California. For three decades, the Foundation has raised money and made grants to tennis programs that serve disadvantaged youth, promising junior players, and select tennis tournaments and events.

8:00am to 8:45am

Check-in and Continental Breakfast
Peace and Justice Theater Rotunda

9:00am to 12:00pm

PTRW: Empower Session*
Professional Tennis Registry will lead an engaging discussion and presentation on communication negotiation skills and developing professional networks.

Presenters include Milena Stephens (PTR – Director of Education & Diversity) and Linda Low (PTR Educator).

* PTR Members will receive four educational credits for attending this session.

12:10pm to 1:30pm

Team Lunch
Garden of the Sea

1:40pm to 2:40pm

Keynote Panel:
“Title IX – Past, Present, and Future Impact on Women Athletes”

Moderated by Danielle McNamara (ITA Director of Coach Education), the panel will include Sherri Stephens (USD Head Women’s Tennis Coach, Retired) and various additional panelists. 

2:45pm to 3:45pm

Panel #1
Athlete mental/physical/nutritional health, balancing competition and personal lifestyles. Moderated by Erica Perkins Jasper (Claremont-McKenna Colleges), the panel will include Lorena Martin (USC), Jennifer Petrie (University of San Diego), and Sara MacKenzie (Cal Poly San Luis Obispo).

3:50pm to 4:50pm

Panel #2
Professional athletes and sport executives discuss hurdles and positive strategies for success. Th panel will feature Cassidy Lichtman (Professional Volleyball Player) and Kaitlyn Verfuerth (Multi-Sport Wheelchair Athlete).

5:15pm to 7:30pm

Women Who Ace Achievement Award and Reception
Honoring Sherri Stephens for her 38 exceptional years as Head Women’s Tennis Coach at the University of San Diego.

The Award Ceremony will take place at the Peace and Justice Theater, with a reception to follow at the Garden of the Sea.

Erica Perkins Jasper

Erica Perkins Jasper
William B. Arce Director of Athletes, Physical Education & Recreation and George R. Roberts Fellow – Claremont-Mudd-Scripps Colleges

Entering her third year as the Director of CMS Athletics, Erica previously served as the Chief Operating Officer for the Intercollegiate Tennis Association and as a successful Head Tennis Coach at Georgia Southern University, Michigan State University, and the University of New Mexico.

Jennifer Petrie
Head Women’s Volleyball Coach – University of San Diego

In her 24th season as the Head Volleyball Coach at the University of San Diego, Jennifer Petrie has established herself as one of the nation’s most accomplished volleyball coaches in history. She has led the Toreros to 21 of the last 23 NCAA tournaments and over 400 total wins.

Sherri Stephens
Head Women’s Tennis Coach, Retired – University of San Diego

Having led the Toreros to 428 wins, 13 NCAA Tournaments, and a WCC Championship during her distinguished coaching career at the University of San Diego, Sherri Stephens is the inaugural recipient of the Women Who Ace Achievement Award, presented by USTA Southern California.

Sara MacKenzie
Director/Head Strength & Conditioning Coach – California Polytechnic State University, San Luis Obispo

Entering her fourth year as the Director and Head Strength and Conditioning Coach at Cal Poly-SLO, Sara MacKenzie is responsible for all aspects of Sports Performance with the 21 Mustang DI teams. She has led men’s tennis, women’s basketball, volleyball and women’s soccer to Big West Conference Championships.

Danielle McNamara
Director of Coach Education – Intercollegiate Tennis Association

Previously the Head Women’s Tennis Coach at Yale University where she was named a two-time Wilson/ITA Northeast Region Coach of the Year, Danielle McNamara is the new Director of Coach Education with the ITA.

Milena Stephens
Director of Education and Diversity – Professional Tennis Registry

In her role as Director of Education and Diversity at the PTR, Milena Stephens is heavily involved in developing new educational courses for PTR members as well as spearheading the PTRW program with the goal of recruiting, certifying and empowering women coaches.

Linda Low
Professional Tennis Registry Consultant

Having worked for national governing bodies, sporting federations and individual coaches, Linda Low built her professional career on helping people to get better as coaches and leaders–most recently with the Women’s Sport Leadership Academy High Performance Coaching program, aiming to have more female coaches at future Olympic Games.

Cassidy Lichtman
Board of Directors Member & Professional Volleyball Player – Athletes Unlimited

Cassidy Lictman is a professional volleyball player, Chairperson of the Volleyball Player Executive Committee at Athletes Unlimited, and a member of the Board of Directors for USA Volleyball. She founded the non-profit P/ATH, an organization that harnesses the power of professional athletes to teach the next generation skills around empathy, equity and empowerment.

Lorena Martin
Assistant Professor of Clinical Data Sciences and Operations, Sports Performance Consultant – University of Southern California
Author, and Founder of the Sports Science Diversity and Inclusion Association

Kaitlyn Verfuerth
Paralympic Athlete in Wheelchair Tennis & Outrigger Canoe

The annual award recognizes an outstanding Southern California based leader and role model, dedicated to the mentorship and advancement of women in sport.

This year’s recipient is Sherri Stephens for her storied career as head coach of the University of San Diego Toreros Women’s Tennis Team.

Join us for a full day (includes PTRW Empower Session) or a half day (lunch to reception) that is guaranteed to empower and energize you.

All attendees will receive a Women Who Ace swag bag.

Proceeds from the event will go to the Southern California Tennis Association Foundation and the University of San Diego Women’s Tennis Scholarship Fund.

Click here to register.

Click here to learn more about becoming an event sponsor and placing an ad in the program and tribute book.

Register as a sponsor here.

Please contact Benay Weintraub at bweintraub@scta.usta.com with questions.