With an MBA and a financial background, one might expect Cathrine Harless to be crunching numbers instead of coaching tennis students.
But Cathrine has known that tennis was her calling since she was a teenager.
"I've always had a great passion for the sport," she says. "I started teaching as a 15 year old at my local club in Sweden. It was a way to help my parents finance my own tennis training and tournament travel. I pursued the college career route and was recruited on scholarship to a division 1 university in the US. After college I earned my USPTA certification and decided to coach full time. It's great to work with with beginner, intermediate, and advanced players and help them achieve their individual goals," Cathrine says.
Cathrine spent 9 years in Europe with accompanying her husband on his overseas assignments. She started her own tennis school in Tirana, Albania, developing a program from scratch. After that the family moved to Bucharest, Romania where she coached and traveled with competitive junior players. The last assignment was in Malta and there Cathrine developed a high performance program for St. Andrew's Tennis school in Pembroke.
Cathrine alos lived in Washington DC for 2 years. During this time she was the assistant tennis coach at Episcopal High School in Alexandria, VA. Prior to that she spent she worked as an independent pro in the Washington, DC area. Directly after graduating from Charleston Southern University, Charleston, SC she worked part-time for the Mt Pleasant, S.C., Parks and Recreation Department while also working as a financial planner.
She earned a Master of Business Administration and a bachelor's degree
in business finance and economics from Charleston Southern University while playing NCAA No. 1 and No. 2 singles and doubles. She was twice named the
Scholar Athlete of the Year in college; made the all-conference singles
and doubles team three times; and received the Most Valuable Player and
"I was lucky to be recruited by one of my MBA professors that had his own Financial planning business in Charleston. He knew how crazy I was about tennis and allowed me to leave office early several days of the week in order to teach at the after-school tennis clinics."
Cathrine returned to the US in July of 2013 and gained a position at Mt. Pleasant Tennis Center in Mt. Pleasant, SC in Aug the same year. She was put in charge of the 10 and under tournament players. She also added adult group lessons to the program, coached State ranked players and was in charge of the summer camps at the satellite location of the Tennis Center.
The next (ad)venture is moving back to Malta and take on the position as head coach at Elite Tennis Malta, operating out of the Union Club in Sliema. "It's extremely exciting to have the opportunity to take on this already very successful academy and develop it further!"