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Getting to know USTA Professional Members Abby Moore and Patti McKenna( Mon, Jan 14 00:01:AM)


Getting to know USTA Professional members Abby Moore and Patti McKenna

“Getting to know you…getting to know all about you.”
Abby Moore with son Graham Patti McKenna
A new feature of INSIDE LOOP, USTA's enewsletter for Professional members, is an up close and personal interview with YOU, our professionals. We want to know YOU, what makes you tick, what you do outside of baton, little known facts about YOU. Our first feature interviews include Professional members Abby Moore, a popular judge from Texas, and Patti McKenna, a coach from the famed Sparklers on Long Island, New York.

We sat down and asked them:
Outside of baton, what do you do as an occupation?
Abby: “Besides being a Mama to an amazing little boy, I am a school counselor for a large high school in Fort Worth.

Patti: "My 'real' job, the '9-5' job, is in the field of medical finance at a hospital on Long Island. Specifically, I deal with the revenue cycle, insurance reimbursement and auditing." 
Why are you passionate about baton twirling?

Abby: “Beyond the athleticism and artistry displayed in our sport I love twirling because of the friends and twirling family I have grown up with and continue to love dearly. Many of these friends I only see once or twice times a year or some I haven’t seen in years but still care so much about and miss them dearly.”

Patti: "I enjoy the creative process of baton twirling of starting from scratch with just an idea, a style, a theme or piece of music and creating a finished routine. Team is the event I enjoy the most. Collaborating with Maureen Pecorella on team routines is such fun. I think we are a great team.

I have been with the Sparklers Baton Twirling organization for over 40 years and I have learned so much more than how to twirl a baton. Life skills such as leadership skills, knowing what individual responsibilities are to a team, being prepared and what it takes to reach a goal are just a few examples of skills that I have taken with me beyond the practice gym and competition floor. Hopefully I have passed some of these skills, and more, on to my athletes. And at the same time, I have learned many things from my athletes as well."

If you could change ANYTHING about USTA, what would that be?
Abby: “I would like to see the continued showcasing and awareness of our amazing athletes. Seeing the breath-taking performance of Savannah Miller and how she captured the hearts of millions of viewers. That’s the promotion we need! I would reach out to the recreational groups out there. We need to find ways of involving ALL twirlers at EVERY level to participate in USTA."

Patti: "I am very appreciative of USTA’s leadership team and their decision to change the USTA membership requirements for both athletes and professional members. I am hoping that this new process will attract not only new, first time baton twirlers to USTA, but it will also be a welcoming sign for athletes and professionals from other associations to participate and compete within USTA, at all levels. I think this is a good first step and I am looking forward to seeing the impact this has on USTA’s membership."
What are three things about you that most USTA folks do not know?
Abby: “1.  I love watching and playing sports.  2.  I am a stylist for Stitch Fix.  3.  On non-twirling weekends, I am out with my Dad competing in archery!”

Patti: "Ok, to start with, my family does not call me Patti. To them, it’s either Tricia, Trish or Aunt Tricia the Great. Mrs. Walsh called me Patti from my very first day as a Sparkler, so from then on, at twirling, I was Patti.

Second, I really enjoy baseball. I am a very proud and loud NY Mets fan! One of my biggest thrills last season was going to Citifield to watch batting practice, getting autographs and pictures of the players with my niece and nephew. I think I was more excited than they were.

Lastly, in October I successfully finished a Tough Mudder. I had a blast. It was so much fun to do all those obstacles and to be in the mud. It was great. Can’t wait to do another one next year."
Thanks,  Abby and Patti, for your candid responses.  Nice “getting to know you!”