needs little introduction. His Stanford men's tennis teams won 17 NCAA Men's Tennis Championships, and 50 of his Stanford players won All-American honors. Dick was named ITA-Wilson "Coach of the Decade" both for the 1980s and the 1990s.
You think Dick Gould would happily retire after such an accomplished career. We were able to catch up with him to find out now he is volunteering for an amazing organization...
Caring for Global Health
Dick Gould has worked as a teacher, coach, and administrator in the San Francisco Peninsula, including two years at Mountain View High School, four years at Foothill College, and most famously, 54 years at Stanford. From 1966 until his retirement in 2004, he coached the Stanford men’s tennis team and led his teams to 17 NCAA Team Championships and coached 50 All-American champions. From 2004 until 2018 he served as the John L. Hinds Director of Tennis at Stanford. He mentored and coached numerous tennis greats, including John McEnroe, Roscoe Tanner, Sandy Mayer, and the Bryan Twins. Gould helped develop the East Palo Alto Tennis and Tutoring Program and has led significant fund-raising efforts for Stanford tennis, including the $18 million facility renovation of the Taube Family Tennis Center. He is the author of the best-selling Tennis Anyone? (Mayfield Publishing, 1999) and has made several videos on playing tennis.
Questions for Dick Gould
TCB: Dick, thank you for answering our questions. How are you and your family holding up during COVID?
DG: What a world we are living in - Political turmoil and riots, COVID, and here in the West, fires, and smoke! WE MUST DO BETTER!
TCB: You worked for Stanford for 54 years. How did you do it? Did you ever get tired of creating new championship teams?
DG: Actually, I taught/coached (two at a high school; 4 at a JC) and served as a Club Pro for six years before coming to Stanford for the 1966-67 season. I coached at Stanford for a total of 38 years and retired into the Director of Tennis position after the 2004 season. I served in this capacity 14 years -until mid-January, 2018.
In conjunction with this, my good friend, Tom Chivington, and I ran a teaching business (Recreation Tennis, Inc) supplying as many as 25 communities with programs and trained, well-supervised teachers for 20 years. Then I got heavily into the Camp business with Charlie Hoeveler and US Sports Camps. Through these two programs combined, I probably taught over 1,000 college-age students in their first tennis teaching positions how to teach tennis. Frankly, I found teachers prospective equally satisfying as coaching my teams – both are “teaching,” and I love to teach!
My position as Director of Tennis gave me the latitude and time to do some things I could not undertake while coaching. As an example, we submitted a bid to host the 1st NCAA Championship for BOTH men and women at the same site. This Championship was held for the first time at Stanford in 2006, and we hosted such again in 2011. It allowed me time to develop an incredible streaming system, which was implemented for the 2006 NCAA’s – matches on all 12 competition courts could be accessed in real-time by anyone anywhere in the world. We designed and built an incredible video scoreboard – the first of its kind for tennis, and implemented a great Broadcast system, which allowed the Broadcaster to take the viewer from court to court, depending on the match he/she felt was most critical at the time.
But I think I am most proud of our fund-raising. Our tennis facility was built in 1926 and was in disrepair. For my first 17 years of coaching, my office was literally an 8’x10’ “Shack” at the courts.
We re-built our entire tennis facility over a number of years with essentially no monies received from our athletic department nor University. Over a 25 year period, this amounted to $22M. The facility allowed us to host not only the NCAA’s BUT the Bank of the West WTA event for 22 years. It also housed the renowned East Palo Alto Tennis and Tutoring program for over 20 years.
In addition, when I retired, our entire men’s tennis program was endowed – the positions of Director of Tennis, Head Coach, and Assistant Coach, all of our allowed 4 ½ Scholarships and our entire men’s tennis operating budget. In addition, our Maintenance and Repair Endowment earns about $100,000 per year for things like court resurfacing, etc.
So to answer your question, I had not time to “get tired."
TCB: So, you retired from tennis in 2018, only to jump headfirst into a totally different cause, health education. What made you do that?
DG: In athletics at Stanford, even with Emeritus status, one does not keep an office or desk. I was offered some office space by a developer friend in downtown Palo Alto. It turned out to be the home of a small non-profit (www.teachaids.org) which had successfully initiated and began HIV education in 82 counties over a 7-year period. They were just starting to address their next Global Health topic, that of Concussion Education. I was hooked immediately. In working first with youth football, and now with many of the USOPC NGB’s, we have done a ton!
Founded at Stanford University, TeachAids is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit social venture that creates breakthrough software addressing numerous persistent problems in health education around the world. TeachAids uses a research-based design process to develop medically-accurate, pedagogically-grounded, and culturally-tailored animated software to optimize learning and retention in 82 countries. It is backed by Google, Microsoft, Barclays, UNICEF, and others, and partnered with 250+ governments, school systems, and NGOs around the world. TeachAids was recognized as an innovation that would "change the world" by MIT Technology Review and is a global laureate of the Tech Awards for philanthropy. The Government of Botswana has recognized June 15 as "National TeachAids Day".
What is CrashCourse? (4min)
CrashCourse Football (12min)
Our main curriculum and USA Football has a built-in Certification system for athletes and coaches immediately following the video and a short test.
I am very proud of what we, as a very small group, have done. All of our products are free to anyone!
TCB: What is your role at TeachAids?
DG: I serve as a volunteer at about 55+ hours per week as Vice Chair – the # 2 person. My roles are too varying to list here. Suffice it to say, I can never get bored . . .
TCB: How prevalent is the "invisible injury" concussion in sports?
DG: See above and our current fundraising pitch deck: CrashCourse Pitch Deck
TCB: We found the video "Brain Fly-Through" extremely interesting. What is the organization doing for educating parents, coaches, players?
DG: Sorry – didn’t know you had seen this. CrashCourse Football is our core product, but we are fundraising at the request of the USOPC to develop a Multi-Sport equivalent of such.
In the meantime, we produced the Fly-Through with is meant to complement our Core Football and Multi-Sport (to come) version, and also as a stand-alone for secondary school teachers to use in science and human bio classes – either in the classroom or on-line. It includes a “Teacher’s Guide,” and was sent to app. 7,000 schools across the country this Fall.
We are just finishing a Concussion Story Wall. We have collected via Zoom Interviews over 550 stories from people concussed (about half HS and half College age) mostly during athletics. Also 100 parents and 30 Veterans. All tell their personal concussion stories in six separate segments. We have collected, edited, and vetted nearly 4,000 such stories. We also have short ”lessons” from 14 nationally renowned medical Docs talking about concussion symptoms in their particular areas of expertise. These will be housed on a stand-alone interactive website, and one may call up via tabs area of interest to their particular case. This is intended to be helpful for those with concussions, their parents, coaches, officials, and teachers, and used even as a referral for Docs themselves who might not have time in a short office visit to describe what to expect or what the sufferer might go through. This should be posted and active before the end of the year. A sneak peek of 40 stories will be posted on the Brain Injury Association of America’s web site Friday, which is National Concussion Awareness Day.
TCB: If you pick up a tennis racquet every once in a while, what's your racquet of choice? Or are you now also a pickleball fan?
DG: Haven’t played a set on over 30 years – no time for such . . .
TCB: Thank you, Dick Gould.