Jane Brown Grimes, a Rare Female Force in Tennis, Dies at 80

“They were my movie stars,” she told The News Journal of Wilmington, Del., in 2009. “They were my idols.”

She studied history at Wellesley College in Massachusetts and received a bachelor’s degree in 1962. After working as a fact checker for Life magazine and then for a documentary filmmaker, she joined the Manhattan office of the International Tennis Hall of Fame in 1977.

Starting as an event planner, she became a fund-raiser before rising to executive director of the Hall of Fame in 1981, a post she held until 1986. Working mainly from its Manhattan office, she helped raise money to rehabilitate buildings at the Hall, in Newport, R.I., and was the director of tournaments held on its grounds.

After leaving to join the women’s tennis council, Mrs. Brown Grimes returned to the Hall as president in 1991 and stayed through 2000, overseeing the acquisition of tennis memorabilia critical to the Hall’s historical mission and continuing the renovations.

She was elected to the board of the United States Tennis Association in 2001 and then rose through its ranks to become volunteer chairman and president in 2007. The second woman to hold that position, she served through 2008. During her two-year tenure she particularly championed youth programs and was involved in the U.S.T.A.’s acquisition of the Western & Southern Open.

“Jane was one of the few who paved the way for other women to have leadership roles in tennis,” Ms. Worcester said.

Mrs. Brown Grimes was inducted into the Hall of Fame in 2014.

In addition to her daughter, she is survived by her sons, Jim Schwarz and Ames Brown; her brother, Sam Gillespie; and five grandchildren. Her marriage to Marshall Schwarz ended in divorce, and her marriages to Ames Brown and Charles Grimes ended with their deaths.

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