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, and the importance of giving back.
Serena Williams exemplifies courage, beauty, power, and style, and she has overcome insurmountable odds to win 23 career Grand Slams. Her remarkable tennis achievements combined with her off-court success in fashion and philanthropy, as well as her status as a strategic partner and investor, make her one of the most recognizable global icons in the world.
Serena was born in Saginaw, Michigan to Richard Williams and Oracene Price. While still an infant, the family moved to Compton, California, where she began playing tennis at the age of four. At nine, Serena and her family moved to Florida. Since that time, she has become the most dominant figure in tennis.
Serena has won the most Grand Slam singles titles in history, with her most recent win at the 2017 Australian Open while pregnant. In the summer of 2016, Serena won the Wimbledon Championship in both singles and doubles alongside her sister, Venus.
In 2015, Serena won four grand slams: Wimbledon, the French Open, the Australian Open, and the 2014 US Open, a feat affectionately known as the “Serena Slam” and ended the year on the cover of Sports Illustrated as the magazine’s “Sportsperson of the Year”.
Overall, Serena has 23 Grand Slam singles titles and 14 Grand Slam doubles titles. She’s won 783 Professional singles matches, 185 doubles professional matches, 72 WTA singles titles, 23 WTA doubles titles, Gold Medal in Doubles in 2000 (Sydney), 2008 (Beijing), 2012 (London), and Gold Medal in Singles in 2012 (London).
Off the court, fashion, acting, and dancing are Serena's passions. She was named a “Fashion Trendsetter” by Vogue for harnessing her passion to create her HSN Signature Statement collection, an aspirational brand that is accessible to the common consumer. In 2016 alone, Serena was featured on the covers of Self, Glamour, WSJ Magazine, and FADER.
Serena is a dedicated philanthropist. She started the Serena Williams Fund, is a global Goodwill ambassador for UNICEF, and in the fall of 2016, she joined philanthropic forces with her sister, Venus, to establish the Williams Sister Fund, for which they launched their first endeavor in their hometown of Compton: the Yetunde Price Resource Center. Named after their eldest sister who was killed by senseless gun violence, the Resource Center conducts community asset inventory and develops a comprehensive resource network designed to connect residents affected by violence with service providers. In February 2016, Serena partnered with the Helping Hands Jamaica Foundation to build a school in Jamaica and has funded and opened two schools in Africa that are currently in operation.
Serena splits her time between Palm Beach, Florida and Los Angeles, California with her husband Alexis Ohanian and her daughter Alexis Olympia Ohanian Jr.