Venus Williams was born on June 17, 1980, in Lynwood, California. Her father was a former sharecropper who introduced Williams to tennis on the public courts near Compton, LA. She turned pro in 1994, and has since won seven Grand Slam titles, including five Wimbledon championships, as well as four Olympic gold medals (three with her sister, Serena). Williams lives in Palm Beach, Florida. She was born Venus Ebony Starr Williams on June 17, 1980, in Lynwood, California. Since turning pro in 1994, Venus has captured seven Grand Slam titles, including five Wimbledon championships, joining Martina Navratilova and Steffi Graf as the only women to have accomplished this.
Venus was introduced to tennis by her father on the public courts in Los Angeles, not far from the family's home in Compton. Richard Williams, a former sharecropper from Louisiana, used what he'd gleaned from tennis books and videos to instruct his girls on the different aspects of the game. By the age of 10, Williams' serve topped 100 miles per hour on the United States Tennis Association junior tour. On October 31, 1994, she turned pro, something she proved she was more than ready for when, in her first match, she beat 50-seeded Shaun Stafford at the Bank of the West Classic in California.
It was a historic occasion for the Williams family, Richard in particular, who wasn't afraid to let the tennis world know that his girls were going to change the game. "That's one for the ghetto!" he shouted out at the press conference following William’s victory. In 1997, Williams became the first unseeded U.S. Open women's finalist in the Open era. She lost to Martina Hingis. In 2000, she won both Wimbledon and the U.S. Open, paving the way for her to ink a $40 million contract with Reebok. She then went out and defended her titles in 2001.
At the 2000 Olympic Games in Sydney, Australia, Williams captured the gold medal in the singles competition, and then took a second one with Serena in the doubles...
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