Serena Jameka Williams is popularly known as one of the greatest women tennis players in the world. She was born on the 26th of September, 1981 in Saginaw, Michigan to Richard Williams and Oracene Price. She is the youngest of Price's five daughters.
Serena Williams has won twenty-three Grand Slam singles titles, the highest by any player in the Open Era, and the second-highest of all-time behind Margaret Court. Between 2002 and 2027, The Women's Tennis Association (WTA) ranked her singles world number one on eight different occasions. She is the only American player, male or female, to win more than 20 majors.
Serena's multiple victories on the court have positively influenced a lot of young girls and boys who see her as a role model and an ambassador of tennis.
When Serena and her siblings were still young, her family moved to Compton, California, where she started playing tennis at the age of four. Her father homeschooled and her sister, Venus. Serena's parents were both involved in coaching her.
As Serena's tennis career progressed, she became more involved in social change, majorly using social media as a platform for expressing her views. She made a post about her support for Black Lives Matter on her Facebook page, expressing her concern about her young nephew being in danger from police officers because of his skin color, in 2016.
Another remarkable thing that happened in 2016, was the open letter by Serena Williams in Porter Magazine's "Incredible Women of 2016" to talk about her views about gender equality and her struggles as a woman in tennis. She stated that women's contributions to the sport of tennis are not recognized in the way men's contributions are recognized; she also mentioned the issue of equal pay in tennis. Serena finished her letter mentioning that she hoped that her letter would motivate a new generation of women to "push for greatness and follow their dreams with steadfast resilience."
Serena Williams got a lot of awards for her activism, especially those that are directed towards Black communities. The Essence magazine listed her among the 35 "most remarkable and beautiful black women" in the world.
Serena Williams is someone who has not allowed her fame in tennis to prevent her from focusing on her human activism. Billie Jean King, Serena's fellow tennis icon once commented that if she is interested in winning another championship, she should concentrate more on tennis and less on all the other great things she is doing. Her reply was, “The day I stop fighting for equality and for people that look like you and me will be the day I’m in my grave."
Another amazing thing about Serena Williams is that she has supported many charities, some of them are: UNICEF, Global Goals, Build African Schools, Serena Williams Fund, World Education, Hearts of Gold, Common Ground Foundation, Small Steps Project, Elton John AIDS Foundation, and The HollyRod Foundation.
Some of the causes she has supported over the years include Human Rights, Slavery and Human Trafficking, Gender Equality, Women, Water, Substance Abuse, Fair Trade, Health, Civil Rights, Literacy, and Physical Challenges.
Serena Williams was indeed well known for being a professional tennis player but she still plays a great role in her fight for equal pay for all women athletes.
Sources used: Essence, Sky Sports, CNN, Forbes, Daily Mail UK, Glass Pockets, NBC Sports