See how Serena Williams became one of the all-time greats as a seven-time champion in 2016 by following her remarkable journey from the time she was born to her current career.
Serena Williams was born in 1978 in Washington, D.C. of Afro-American descent. She was the eighth out of nine children raised by her mother and grandmother. After her mother’s departure, Serena was raised by a single mother who never married. She was also raised to be a self-sufficient woman who was independent and self-assured. This helped give her an edge over the competition—a trait that would prove essential when she was faced with adversity.
In her early elementary years, she showed an early fascination with people, which went well with her father’s interest in sports. She especially loved tennis and gymnastics, which helped her excel at gymnastics and her father’s passion for athletics. To help provide for her family, he worked as a security guard in a restaurant. As she grew, her mother became more involved in her life, and she was introduced to tennis, which grew in size and stature.
Serena was a voracious reader who also excelled at athletics and played basketball and tennis when she was younger. She won the first place and second place awards at her junior tournament and was in the finals of all the local tournaments she played in. At the age of ten, she competed in the District of Columbia’s National Junior Championships (her father’s first national tournament) and took sixth place in the first round. In 1992, she was awarded the Washington Governor’s Youth Achievement Award; the “Sports Woman of the Year” award in 1993 from the National Basketball Players Association and the National Honor Society Award; and the District of Columbia’s “Sportswoman of the Year” award in 1995, as well as the District of Columbia “Youth Hero Award” in 1991 and “Youth Ambassador Award” in 1994.
Serena was also a gifted student in elementary school. She got straight A’s and passed her ninth grade test on her first try. She then transferred to the prestigious Washington School of the Arts, where she also excelled at her studies. At the private school, she won an award for being the top