2010 APTA Annual Meeting & Election of Directors

Notice of Annual Meeting

The Annual Meeting of the American Platform Tennis Association will be held on Friday, May 7, 2010 at the Cherokee Town and Country Club in Atlanta, Georgia, in order to (1) Elect Directors to serve for the term of three years (in accordance with the APTA By-Laws), and until their successors are elected and qualified, and (2) To act upon such matters as may properly come before the Board.


 Your APTA Board of Directors reorganizes each year following the Annual Meeting.  Board Members are elected or re-elected by the members at this meeting.  For those of you who cannot attend the meeting, we offer the opportunity to vote by proxy,following the instructions below.

At the May meeting we will see the retirement of Sally Cottingham, Fred Gumbinner, Marina Ohlmuller and Todd Ward.  Proposed for re-election are Tina Kelly and Peter Lauer.  Proposed for election are Katie Bliss, Mark Kebe, Juan Arraya and Tom Safford.

This group is charged with making decisions about the rules, regulations and finances of the APTA.

Please take time to vote.

2010 APTA Proxy

Mailed, emailed or faxed proxies must be received by Thursday, May 6, 2010.

Proxy in MS Word Format
Use this version if you want to fill in the form and send via email. Your computer must be able to open a MS Word document.

  • Click on the link above to
    Open the proxy document
  • Fill in the form
  • Save
  • Attach the document to an email
  • Send the email to:

Proxy in pdf format
Use this form if you want to mail or fax the form.

  • Click on the link above to
    Open the proxy document
  • Print it out
  • Clip off the proxy portion
  • Fill it out and mail or fax it
    Fax: 412-963-1545
    Address: APTA, 109 Wesport Drive, Pittsburgh, PA 15238

2010 Board Nominees

Katie Bliss  Katie Bliss
A self –professed ‘enthusiastic B player’,  Katie’s love for the game began at the now-defunct Apple Platform Tennis Club in New York City, where she met her future husband, Mark.    She is the past president of the New Jersey Women’s Platform Tennis League, whose membership includes over 800 women from throughout the state playing weekly from October to February.  During her 10 years on the NJWPTL Board, Katie served in several capacities besides her presidency, including Tournament Director of the state tournament.  She has also been involved in running the Short Hills Platform Tennis Invitational, the nation’s oldest national ranking and PCQ tournament, for close to ten years; three as the Tournament Director.  A past contributor to the Platform Tennis Magazine, Katie acknowledges that the smartest financial investment she ever made was her life-time Membership to the APTA in 1990.  She resides in Maplewood, NJ with her husband Mark, also a long time paddle player, and two children.

 Mark Kebe Mark Kebe

Mark grew up in Pittsburgh where he was introduced to the great sport of platform tennis by Jay Smith.  Jay is a commercial painter who created the Peter’s Creek Paddle Club—a club consisting of two courts and a warming hut—behind his paint shop.  Mark was in high school at the time and worked two summers on Jay’s painting crews.  He learned the game at Peter’s Creek by showing up every Sunday morning to get thumped by the Division 1 and 2 men’s league players.  He also was given the opportunity to learn how to scrape, paint and apply grit to the decks (wood planks at the time) and to tighten the screens.  He has a true appreciation for the sport.

Mark graduated from the University of Cincinnati with a Bachelors Degree in Accounting/Finance.  Immediately after college, he played at a local racquet club where he began introducing friends (including his future wife) to the game as well as meeting a number of the local club players.  The game was just beginning to take off in Cincinnati.  Since then, he has played in the Cincinnati Men’s League where the participation has grown from less than 100 players to the current level of over 600 players.  He has been involved with The Midwesterns, Region IV’s National Ranking tournament, for 15 years, acting as Tournament Chairman the last 10 years.  The Midwesterns attracts over 200 participants each year.  He also was part of the 2009 Nationals Committee.

Mark is still enthusiastic about bringing new people into the sport and when he is not playing paddle or traveling to volleyball tournaments to watch his daughter play, he works as a crisis manager/turnaround consultant assisting companies experiencing various degrees of financial distress.  Mark lives in Cincinnati where he enjoys spending time with his wife, Sharon, and their daughter, Paige.

Christina Kelly

Tina Kelly
Christina (Houlihan) Kelly grew up in Westchester, New York, in an enthusiastic platform tennis family, that includes her older brother, Tom, and father, Art.  Tina won the 15-and-Under Junior Nationals (1978) and 18-and-Under Junio Nationals (1980). She graduated from Vassar College (where she played tennis) and received an MFA from the Iowa Writers’ Workshop at the University of Iowa.  A former magazine editor and writer, associate producer of film, and college English professor, she is now a free-lance writer and cruciverbalist (she’s had nine crossword puzzles published in “The New York Times”).

Tina has served on the APTA board since 2007 and is an active member of the Branding and the Web Site committees. She writes and designs regional APTA newsletters, edits and creates articles and marketing materials, and even uses her creativity to fashion APTA ads. She is currently working with the Platform Tennis Hall of Fame Foundation and writing a coffee table book about the history of platform tennis which will be published in Fall 2010.

Tina, her husband, Bill, and their Boston Terrier, Gussie, live in Ossining, New York. She has two stepdaughters and five grandchildren.

 2010-Peter-Lauer-Proxy-150 Peter Lauer

Peter Lauer is a current APTA Board Member and Southern Region (VII) President.  A native of Pittsburgh, PA, Peter grew up playing Platform Tennis from a very early age at the Fox Chapel Racquet Club.  He competed actively in the Junior National circuit achieving a ranking of #2 in the Country in 1978 having reached the finals of the 18&under Nationals in Rumson, NJ that year. 

As an adult Peter has lived all over the country and always sought out and played paddle, most recently in Washington, DC.  In 2002, he and his wife Liz Mori Lauer moved from DC to Atlanta, her home town, with their 3 children.  In 2004 and with help from Taylor Bowen, Peter organized a paddle exhibition on a rickety old court at Ansley Golf Club, to (re)introduce Atlanta to our great sport.  In 2005 Peter formed the Peachtree Paddle League (www.peachtreepaddle.org), with the stated mission to “grow the sport in Atlanta”, and held the 1st Annual Peachtree Invitational Tournament that year with 13 teams. 

Paddle in Atlanta has grown each year since, with hundreds of active players, 7 League teams, 6 new courts, including 2 at his home club of Cherokee.  In 2009 Peter helped to win an APTA Grant to assist in building 2 courts at the Racquet Club of the South in Norcross, GA made famous by Melanie Oudin.  2010 marks the 5th year of the Peachtree Invitational, now a National Ranking Tournament with 32 teams from as far away as NY & IL.  Peter’s stated objective is to host the APTA Nationals in Atlanta (before he is too old to play in it!)
Peter is the Managing Partner and Co-Founder of the Cost Management Group (CMG) based in Atlanta, holds an MBA from the Harvard Business School, and a BS in Mechanical Engineering from Lehigh University.

The APTA would like for Peter to continue to use his energy and skills on a National scaled by leading our “Grow the Sport” Committee and Initiative, which he currently chairs.

Juan Martinez Arraya Juan Arraya

Juan is from Buenos Aires, Argentina, has been playing platform tennis for over 4 years and  tennis since he was five years old. He was in the top 5 in Buenos Aires and in the top 10 of Argentina, playing with people like Gaston Gaudio (#5 in the World), Guillermo Canas (#12), Mariano Puerta (Finalist of the French Open) and others. In December 1991 he competed at the Orange Bowl in Miami, Florida reaching the quarterfinals losing to Norman Magnus, former #2 of the ATP Tour. He also played every tournament in the COSAT circuit, reaching the semifinals of the Pascuas Bowl in Asuncion, Paraguay.  At the age of 18 he played the South American professional tour reaching several semifinals and quarterfinals. After a year playing, he decided to go to college, Universidad de Belgrano, where he got his degree in Management Information Systems. While at UB, he worked for different companies as a software developer, while he was helping the Argentinian Tennis Association where he used to play with the “Future Stars” as a hitting partner.

In February 2002, Juan and his family decided to move to the United States. His first job was in New Jersey at the Pascack Valley Tennis Center as a tennis professional. For two summers he worked at the Belle Haven Club in Greenwich, CT, then at the Greenwich Country Club where he directed and coordinated all aspects of the women and junior programs; and currently he is the Director of Racquet Sports at the Aspetuck Valley Country Club located in Weston, CT.

Platform tennis career achievements:
Runner up at the Boston Open in January 2009
Runner up at the Philadelphia Open in February 2009
Runner up at the Mixed Nationals
Champion at the Shadow Lake in October 2009
Champion at the Long Island Invitational in December 2009

Juan is certified in both PPTA and USPTA.

Juan lives in Riverside, CT with his wife Roxana and their two young daughters (Abril -9- and Lola -3 ) and son (Timoteo - will be born end of January)

Tom Safford Tom Safford
My first paddle tournament was as a 6 year old in 1968 in Michigan. 
Little did I know then what affect the sport would have on my life.  I
played juniors through the 70's, met my future wife at one of the "tour"
stops and things got better from there. I love seeing all the guys I played
with and against "back in the day" still at it in some capacity. As Head of
Junior Paddle I get to give back a little to the sport that has given me so
much. In the off season the Safford's (Leila , Brian, Scotty and Avery) love
to play golf, watch baseball, lacrosse and field hockey. I look to grow
paddle through juniors and through expansion into areas where private clubs
don't exist. We live in Malvern, Pa. and are proud members of Waynesborough
CC - Site of this years Nationals
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