Esteemed sportscaster Mary Carillo was recently a guest of honor at the International Tennis Hall of Fame's Legends Ball, where she was the recipient of the Eugene L. Scott Award, given annually in memory of the late Hall of Famer.
Of the honor, Carillo stated, "I'm particularly honored to receive the award bearing Gene Scott's name. There are few writers who I admired more than Gene Scott. I was captivated by his work. Gene loved this sport with clear eyes and he helped me to see tennis that way. I am deeply honored."
Eugene L. Scott was a United States Davis Cup player and a tournament director, but perhaps his greatest impact on the tennis world was as a voice for the game. He founded Tennis Week magazine and wrote “Vantage Point”, the most well-respected and widely read column about the sport, until his death in 2006. His writings about the sport were known for their poignancy and clarity, and he was rightly dubbed “the conscience of the game.” Each year at the Legends Ball, the International Tennis Hall of Fame gives the award in Scott’s memory to an individual who embodies a commitment to communicating honestly and critically about the game, and who has had a significant impact on the tennis world. Past recipients of the award have included Dick Enberg, Billie Jean King, and Martina Navratilova, among others.
"My late husband and tonight's recipient of the Gene Scott Award have been known for telling it like it is - but with a sense of humor. Gene would be gratified to know that his good friend and well respected colleague has been bestowed this very special award," stated Polly Scott.
Polly Scott, Mary Carillo, Ken Solomon
The award was presented by Ken Solomon, CEO of the Tennis Channel, who stated, "She's the best. It all began with her love for this game. She is the very best colleague you could have, because she inspires all of us, starting with me."
Carillo is an analyst for Tennis Channel, seen calling matches at each Grand Slam. Additionally, her work extends far beyond tennis, as she regularly appears on CBS and NBC, and is a regular on HBO’s “Real Sports with Bryant Gumbel.”The 2016 Rio Summer Games marked Carillo’s 13th Olympic assignment, and her tenth for NBC. Carillo received two Peabody Awards for work on the HBO documentary “Billie Jean King, Portrait of a Pioneer” and for co-writing with Frank Deford the HBO documentary “Dare to Compete: The Struggle of Women in Sports.”
Carillo’s candid and insightful commentary has earned her accolades throughout the industry, including the distinction of being named “Best Sports Analyst of the Decade” by Sports Illustrated. She has been named “Best Commentator” by Tennis Magazine and World Tennis Magazine, and “Broadcaster of the Year” by the WTA. She has co-written two books—Tennis My Way with Martina Navratilova and Rick Elstein’s Tennis Kinetics.
Carillo's love for the sport began from a young age, as she was a competitive junior player. She reached a career high ranking of world No. 33 on the WTA Tour, and won the 1977 French Open mixed doubles title with John McEnroe.
"The Gene Scott Award means the world to me because I so admired and respected his work. I thought he was a terrific journalist and I loved what he stood for. He wanted all of us to get this sport right. For my name to be attached to his means the absolute world to me," stated Carillo.
Chris Evert, Mary Carillo, and Mary's parents.
Mary Carillo & Dick Enberg, who served as emcee of the Legends Ball and is also a past recipient of the Gene Scott Award.