Brad Alan Parks (born April 1, 1957)[1] is an American wheelchair tennis player[2] who co-invented wheelchair tennis with Jeff Minnebraker. During the Uniqlo Wheelchair Tennis Tour in the 1990s, Parks won five singles and seven doubles titles during Championship Series events. During the 1992 Summer Paralympics, Parks reached the quarterfinals in the men's singles and won gold with Randy Snow in the men's doubles. At the 1994 Wheelchair Tennis Masters, Parks also reached the quarterfinals in the men's singles. As an executive, Parks co-founded the National Foundation of Wheelchair Tennis in 1980 before becoming the first president of the International Wheelchair Tennis Federation in 1988. Parks became part of the International Tennis Hall of Fame in 2010 and was the 2016 Philippe Chatrier Award recipient from the International Tennis Federation.

Brad Parks
Full nameBrad Alan Parks[1]
Country (sports) United States
Born (1957-04-01) April 1, 1957 (age 66)
Orange, California, U.S.
Paralympic Games Gold Medal (1992)
Medal record
Representing  United States
Gold medal – first place 1992 Barcelona Doubles

Life and career Edit

Parks was born in Orange, California.[1] He attended a dental program at the University of Utah.[3][4] At the age of 18, he participated at a freestyle skiing competition in Park City, Utah.[5][6] While participating, Parks performed a special skilled stunt which he then went of the ramp from the competition.[6] He was supposed to land on his skis, but then landing on his back in an icebound surface causing him in an injury.[1][6] With being injured, Parks was paralyzed from his vertebrate anatomy hips.[1] He then created a sport for disabled people with wheelchairs, in which Parks had help from tennis player, Jeff Minnebraker, in 1977.[1] Parks creation was wheelchair tennis, in which he thought of the idea in the hospital with his injury.[1] With Minnebraker, they've both created the rules for wheelchair tennis.[5]

As a Uniqlo Wheelchair Tennis Tour player during the 1990s, Parks won five singles and seven doubles titles at Championship Series events.[7][8] He also reached the quarterfinals at the men's singles event during the 1994 Wheelchair Tennis Masters.[9] Park competed at the 1992 Summer Paralympics, in the first wheelchair tennis competition at the Paralympics Games.[5] During his events, Parks reach the quarterfinals in the men's singles.[10] He was awarded the gold medal with Randy Snow in the men's doubles event.[1][5]

Parks co-founded the National Foundation of Wheelchair Tennis with Dave Saltz in 1980.[11] He then was the first initialed president of the International Wheelchair Tennis Federation, in 1988.[1][5] With his creation, the United States Tennis Association created an award called "The Brad Parks Award", in 2002.[1] He became honored in the International Tennis Hall of Fame, being placed on the contributor category, in 2010.[1] In 2016, Parks was the recipient of the Philippe Chatrier Award by the International Tennis Federation.[12] Apart from tennis, Park won medals in wheelchair racing at the World Disabled Olympics and the National Wheelchair Olympics.[13]

References Edit

  1. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l "Class of 2010: Brad Parks". International Tennis Hall of Fame. Retrieved February 6, 2022.
  2. ^ "Wheelchair not a handicap for pro". The Miami News. Miami, Florida. December 25, 1980. p. 39. Retrieved February 6, 2022 – via  
  3. ^ Bordman, Sid (August 23, 1984). "Tennis mushrooms with wheelchair athletes". The Kansas City Star. Kansas City, Missouri. p. 24. Retrieved February 6, 2022 – via  
  4. ^ Dean, Paul (March 5, 1980). "The Wheelchairman of the Tennis Courts". Los Angeles Times. sec. V p. 6.
  5. ^ a b c d e "How One Man's Idea Spawned Wheelchair Tennis". International Paralympic Committee. June 5, 2012. Retrieved February 6, 2022.
  6. ^ a b c "The amazing story of Brad Parks". Petaluma Argus-Courier. Petaluma, California. October 30, 1987. p. 7. Retrieved February 6, 2022 – via  
  7. ^ "Brad Parks". International Tennis Foundation. Singles. Retrieved February 24, 2022.
  8. ^ "Brad Parks". International Tennis Foundation. Doubles. Retrieved February 24, 2022.
  9. ^ "NEC Wheelchair Tennis Masters". International Tennis Foundation. Retrieved February 24, 2022.
  10. ^ "Brad Parks". International Paralympic Committee. Retrieved February 24, 2022.
  11. ^ Jauss, Bill (June 1, 1980). "Tennis serves this wheelchair athlete". Chicago Tribune. sec. 4 p. 9.
  12. ^ Palmer, Dan (17 May 2016). "Wheelchair tennis founder to receive ITF's highest accolade". Inside the Games. Retrieved February 24, 2022.
  13. ^ Martz, Jim (January 14, 1981). "Tennis on wheels". Miami Herald (International ed.). p. 4B.

External links Edit