A Conversation with Serena Williams
One of the most talented and successful athletes of all time, Serena Williams knows what it takes to win. She’s come back from major injuries to win international titles, and she’s persevered to become one of the top tennis players in history. An entrepreneur as well, Serena has also branched out off the court to pursue her love of fashion, running a successful line of clothing, handbags and jewelry. A conversation with Serena Williams offers audiences nationwide a rare up-close and personal perspective on world-class dedication, training, winning, success, risk taking, entrepreneurship, advocacy for marginalized groups, and the importance of giving back.
Serena Williams Embraces Her Role as a Business Leader
The name SERENA WILLIAMS is synonymous with determination and excellence, on and off the court. Serena has long been a leader in brand development, leveraging her name and likeness for endorsements with global brands like Nike, Wilson, Gatorade, Pampers, Stuart Weitzman, Beats by Dre, and Wheaties.
Over the past decade, she expanded her personal empire by founding S by Serena, a fashion line celebrating body positivity and female empowerment, and Serena Ventures, her own venture capital fund with a focus on investing in companies that embrace diverse leadership, individual empowerment, creativity, and opportunity. These are business moves that she explained to Forbes, saying “I want to be in the infrastructure. I want to be the brand, instead of just being the face.”
Serena Ventures has found enormous success with investments in 50+ companies, with a combined market cap of $14 Billion. Williams has proven herself to be a generational leader and a whiz at following market trends. She is also a champion for women and believes in harnessing the power of business and entrepreneurism for social good. Williams motivates audiences with stories from her extraordinary life as a tennis pro and business titan.
Tennis Legend Serena Williams is named to Sports Illustrated Unrelenting List
Sports Illustrated has recognized SERENA WILLIAMS on their Unrelenting List of the most powerful, most influential and most outstanding women in sports right now—the game-changers who are speaking out, setting the bar and making a difference. Here is what they said of Williams:
A longstanding figure in the sport of tennis for more than two decades, Williams has 23 Grand Slam titles to her name—and at age 39, she’s still competing and clawing for her record-tying 24th major title. A cultural and sporting icon, Williams’s influence extends beyond the court. From battling injuries to surviving serious complications after giving birth to her daughter, Olympia, in 2017, to withstanding racist remarks and body-shaming comments throughout her career, Williams has confronted adversity head on, with strength, resilience and courage. Since becoming a venture capitalist who invests in early-stage startups, she's taking on the problem of racial bias and resource allocation in Silicon Valley, calling attention to the bias against Black female founders. She was recently profiled in Fast Company about her business plans, from Serena Ventures to what she calls her "S umbrella," her collection of personal brands. And all the while, she serves as a constant inspiration for both working moms and a new generation of young tennis players around the world.
VIRTUAL PROGRAMMING: Serena Williams is an incredibly inspiring, powerful woman who is a remarkable example of leadership, tenacity, and vision
If you are a tennis fan (or not), you know SERENA WILLIAMS as the larger-than-life tennis icon. Few athletes become bigger than their game--Williams is one of them. Previously the #1 Women’s Single tennis player in the world, with 23 Grand Slam singles titles - the most of any other player currently playing and the second most of all time - Serena is a true trailblazer. Recently gracing the cover of VOGUE, Serena reminded the world that despite her tremendous success in the sport, “tennis is a small play in the whole scheme of things.” Can you imagine that? Serena, essentially, is just getting started. Using her platform, Serena continues to work to advance intersectional issues from women’s equity to society inequities. For her feature in the TIME100, Dwyane Wade writes, “Serena does not take her abilities for granted. She deserves all of her success, because she is one of the most hardworking and disciplined people I know. She is a world-class athlete and a true champion in every sense of the word. Serena is on a mission — and how amazing that we all get to witness it.” At virtual and in-person events, Serena Williams delivers an incredibly inspiring, powerful message and serves as a remarkable example of leadership, tenacity, and vision.
Serena Williams exemplifies courage, beauty, power and style, and has overcome insurmountable odds to win 23 career Grand Slams, the second-most singles titles of record. Her remarkable tennis achievements, combined with her off-court success in fashion, philanthropy and business, make her one of the most recognizable icons in the world and a powerful voice for women, mothers and future mothers.
In 2019, Williams launched her own VC firm, Serena Ventures, which focuses on investing in companies that embrace diverse leadership, individual empowerment, creativity and opportunity. Williams’ fashion brand, SERENA, which celebrates body positivity and female empowerment, made its New York Fashion Week debut this past September.
Williams’ endorsements include Nike, Wilson, Gatorade, Pampers, Stuart Weitzman, Beats by Dre and Wheaties. Her HBO sports documentary series, Being Serena, was nominated for a 2019 Peabody and 2019 MTV Movie and TV Award.