Julie Heldman

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Julie Heldman
Julie Heldman 1969.jpg
Heldman in 1969
Country (sports)  United States
Residence Santa Monica
Born (1945-12-08) December 8, 1945 (age 72)
Berkeley, California, USA
Height 5 ft 7 in (1.70 m)[1]
Turned pro 1963
Retired 1975
Career record 70–31
Highest ranking No. 5 (1969)
Grand Slam Singles results
Australian Open SF (1974)
French Open SF (1970)
Wimbledon QF (1969)
US Open SF (1974)
Career record 39–22
Grand Slam Doubles results
Australian Open SF (1974)
French Open SF (1968, 1969, 1970)
Wimbledon SF (1969, 1974)
US Open QF (1968, 1969)

Julie Heldman (born December 8, 1945) is a retired American tennis player who won 22 professional tennis titles. In 1969 she was ranked World No. 5, her highest career world ranking, and No. 2 in the US. She was Canadian National 18 & Under Singles Champion at age 12, US Champion in Girls’ 15 Singles, Girls’ 18 Singles Champion, Italian Singles Champion, Canadian Singles and Doubles Champion, US Clay Court Doubles Champion, won three Olympic gold medals, and won three gold medals at the 1969 Maccabiah Games.[2]

Early life[edit]

Feldman was born in Berkeley, California, is the daughter of 1936 National Junior Champion and leading amateur player Julius Heldman and World Tennis magazine founder and publisher Gladys Heldman, and is Jewish.[3][4][5][6][1]

Tennis career[edit]

She started playing tennis when she was eight, and won her first national title (the Canadian 18 and under singles) at age 12, in 1958. Heldman won the US Girls Junior Singles Title in 1960 (in the 15s) and 1963 (in the 18s). Her elder sister, Carrie, was also a competitive tennis player.[7]

Heldman was Cincinnati Singles Champion in 1962. While a student at Stanford University in 1964, Heldman reached the national collegiate singles and doubles finals. She received her B.A. from Stanford in 1966, and went on to earn her J.D. from UCLA Law School in 1981,[8] where she was a UCLA Law Review editor and was Law School Graduate of the Year, as well as UCLA Graduate Woman of the Year.[2]

Heldman won the Canadian Open singles title in 1965. She won three medals (gold in mixed doubles, silver in women's doubles and bronze in women's singles) at the Olympic demonstration tournament in 1968. In 1969, she won the Italian Open, beating Kerry Melville Reid in the final. Also in 1969, at the Curaçao International, she defeated the world no.1 Margaret Court in the semifinal and world no. 2 Nancy Richey in the final to win the singles title.[9] Heldman reached the semifinals of three Grand Slam singles tournaments: the 1970 French Open, the 1974 Australian Open, and the 1974 US Open. She won the doubles title at the US Women's Clay Court Championships and at the Canadian Open in 1974.

Federation Cup[edit]

Heldman played on the US Federation Cup teams that captured the championship in 1966 and 1969. She also played on the U.S. Federation Cup teams in 1970, 1974, and 1975. She was the captain of the team in 1975. Her career win-loss record in Federation Cup competition was 21–9.[10]


Heldman won a gold, silver, and bronze medal in the 1968 Olympic Games in Mexico City when tennis was a demonstration sport.[1]

Maccabiah Games[edit]

Heldman in 1972

Heldman won events at the 1969 Maccabiah Games, competing in singles, doubles, and mixed doubles.[7]

Other career highlights[edit]

  • Ranked in the USTA Top 10, 1963–65, 1968–69, 1971–75
  • Ranked in the World Top 10, 1969–70, 1973–74
  • Virginia Slims Professional Tour, 1971–75
  • U.S. Wightman Cup Team Member, 1969–71, 1974; Most Valuable Player, 1969; Team Captain, 1974–75
  • U.S. Bonne Bell Cup Team Member, 1973–1974; Most Valuable Player, Team Captain, 1974
  • Winner of USTA Service Bowl 1975

Halls of Fame[edit]

Heldman was inducted into the:

Personal life[edit]

She married Bernie Weiss in 1981, and her daughter Amy Rebecca was born in 1987. In 1985 Heldman became President & Co-Chairman of Signature Eyewear. Heldman retired in 2000. After ending her playing career she worked as a television color commentator and journalist, with CBS, NBC, PBS, and HBO at the US Open and Wimbledon, 1973–78. She published articles about tennis in various magazines, including World Tennis. She was the first woman to cover a men's tennis event (the 1976 Avis Challenge Cup).[7]

WTA Tour finals[edit]

Singles 1[edit]

Grand Slam 0
WTA Championships 0
Tier I 0
Tier II 0
Tier III 0
Tier IV & V 0
Olympic Games 0
Outcome No. Date Tournament Surface Opponent Score
Runner-up 1. October 26, 1968 Mexico City Olympics (Exhibition), Mexico Clay United States Jane Bartkowicz 3–6, 2–6

Doubles 2 (1–1)[edit]

Grand Slam 0
WTA Championships 0
Tier I 0
Tier II 0
Tier III 0
Tier IV & V 1
Olympic Games 0
Outcome No. Date Tournament Surface Partner Opponents Score
Runner-up 1. October 20, 1968 Mexico City Olympics (Demonstration), Mexico Clay France Rosy Darmon West Germany Edda Buding
West Germany Helga Niessen
3–6, 4–6
Winner 2. October 26, 1968 Mexico City Olympics (Exhibition), Mexico Clay France Rosy Darmon United States Jane Bartkowicz
United States Valerie Ziegenfuss
6–0, 10–8

See also[edit]


External links[edit]