At its Annual Meeting on March 15, 2016, the members of the Belmont Tennis Club (BTC), one of the oldest tennis clubs in America, honored its venerable Groundskeeper – Charles T. “Chuck” Jennings. BTC President Alison Borelli’s remarks follow:
“Chuck, you are the Groundskeeper in name only – yes, you keep the Club in pristine shape, but you give so much more of yourself and your time. This is not part of your job description, nor are you compensated for it. I wouldn’t be surprised if most members didn’t realize that you are not required to be there whenever the sun is shining! You could show up in the morning, ready the courts, and leave if you wished.
But, you love this place, and you devote much of your time here. You take care of so many small issues that arise that, left unattended, would fester and become much more difficult to address.
You know all the members by name or, as you prefer to call us, your “flock”. You understand – and tolerate – each of our idiosyncrasies. You help arrange matches between members who might not know of each other otherwise. You are our neighborhood greeter and diplomat! You know by name every person who lives in the neighborhood – and their dogs. You keep the peace. The beat of the Club is ingrained into your heart.
Normally, an organization would honor someone so special after they have retired – or otherwise departed. At the 2015 Annual Meeting, the members were adamant that we honor you know, to truly show our appreciation for everything that you mean to the Belmont Tennis Club.
The membership may be the heart of this Club, but you are truly the soul.
It is my honor and privilege, on behalf of the membership of the Club, to present to you this sign, dedicating the clubhouse as “The Chuck Jennings Clubhouse”. Of course, you will have to take care of hanging it!”
Jennings, himself an accomplished racquetball and tennis player, has been Groundskeeper at the Belmont Tennis Club in Belmont, Massachusetts for 20 years.