Dow celebrates the 30th year of the Dow Tennis Classic

The $100,000 USTA Pro Circuit Event celebrates the achievement of women in sports, offers inspiration to area students, and delivers world-class entertainment to the Great Lakes Bay Region

MIDLAND, Mich. - January 29, 2018 - The Dow Chemical Company (Dow) celebrates 30 years of bringing women’s professional tennis to the Great Lakes Bay Region with the 2018 Dow Tennis Classic, a $100,000 U.S. Tennis Association (USTA) Pro Circuit event taking place January 27 to February 4, 2018, at the Greater Midland Tennis Center. Nearly 15,000 tennis fans are expected to attend the event, which is the largest women’s event on the USTA Pro Circuit and the only professional tennis event set to take place in Michigan this year.

“The Dow Tennis Classic has become one of the region’s great traditions,” said Karen S. Carter, chief inclusion officer at Dow. “The event not only brings world class tennis to the Great Lakes Bay community, but also serves to highlight the positive impact of women’s sports on society, and how competition at these elite levels can teach life lessons that extend far beyond the court.”

Inspiring the community of the Great Lakes Bay Region with positive female role models
The community impact of the Dow Tennis Classic is far reaching. The Dow-sponsored “Pros to Schools” program is a highly successful community engagement effort that enables these pro athletes to reach more than 3,000 area students with messages that stress the importance of health and wellness, and living a fit and active lifestyle, as well as inspiring young girls to join and remain in sports programs.

“Studies show that by the age of 14, girls drop out of sports twice as often as boys. That’s a missed opportunity because playing sports develop the skills and confidence necessary to break down barriers and achieve goals throughout our lives,” added Carter. “The Pros to Schools program engages young minds at so many different levels. Because these female athletes come from all over the world, they are able to share their highly diverse languages and cultural backgrounds as well as impart their advice about hard work, perseverance and how the spirt of competition helps to achieve lofty goals both on and off the court.”

Dow to Highlight Diversity and Inclusion on Wednesday, January 31
Dow will celebrate diversity and inclusion with representatives of its Employee Resource Groups on Wednesday, January 31. Former professional tennis athlete and Dow employee Mariana Matias, who was born deaf but grew up playing tennis and was a top ranked player in her home country of Brazil, will offer the first serve during match play, which begins at 7:00 p.m. Mariana is a true inspiration to all Dow employees, and never related to her disability as a limitation of her true potential. She most recently represented Brazil in the Deaflympics in July, 2017, an event sanctioned by the International Olympic Committee at which deaf athletes compete at an elite level.

New Lighting Enabled by Dow Technology to Deliver World-Class Playing Conditions
Also new at this year’s tournament is advanced LED lighting technologies enabled by Dow Performance Silicones.

The Dow Tennis Classic takes place in the Greater Midland Tennis Center, the largest tennis center in the Midwest. For this year’s tournament, the 43-year-old high intensity discharge (HID) lights over center court were replaced with 54 quiet and energy-efficient LED lighting fixtures. The state-of-the-art high-lumen LED flood luminaires from Acuity Brands utilize secondary optics made of high-performance DOWSIL™ Moldable Optical Silicone. These injection-moldable silicones deliver excellent optical performance, impressive light stability, and can be molded into complex shapes to better guide light and enable greater overall efficiency.

This new LED light installation, majority funded by Dow’s Consumer Solutions business, will enable Dow to study the effects of reduced heat generation, improved light quality and energy efficiency on the operating costs of the Tennis Center. Data will be gathered during the tournament and throughout the year to access the performance of this new technology and how it can be applied to other professional sport venues.

“This tournament truly is an international event, with more than 50 players from 25 countries competing this year. But what sets this event apart is how the whole community pitches in,” said Scott Mitchell, tournament director of the Dow Tennis Classic and Executive Director of the Greater Midland Tennis Center. “The support we have received from the entire Great Lakes Bay Region, and from our title sponsor Dow, is what has enabled The Dow Tennis Classic to succeed for 30 years, and we are looking forward to a great week of world-class tennis ahead.”

About The Dow Tennis Classic
The Dow Tennis Classic started as a $25,000 event in 1989, and grew in significance over the following two decades. It was named the first and only $100,000 event in 2010, and is today the longest running and largest USTA Women’s Pro Circuit event. In October 2017, Dow announced it had committed to a three-year title sponsorship leading up to the 2020 edition. Past competitors include former world No. 1 Maria Sharapova, two-time Grand Slam Champion Li Na, former world No. 8 Anna Kournikova and rising American star CiCi Bellis.

About Dow
The Dow Chemical Company (Dow) combines science and technology knowledge to develop premier materials science solutions that are essential to human progress. Dow has one of the strongest and broadest toolkits in the industry, with robust technology, asset integration, scale and competitive capabilities that enable it to address complex global issues. Dow’s market-driven, industry-leading portfolio of advanced materials, industrial intermediates, and plastics businesses deliver a broad range of differentiated technology-based products and solutions for customers in high-growth markets such as packaging, infrastructure, and consumer care. Dow is a subsidiary of DowDuPont (NYSE: DWDP), a holding company comprised of Dow and DuPont with the intent to form three strong, independent, publicly traded companies in agriculture, materials science and specialty sectors. More information can be found at

For further information, please contact:

Guillaume Artois
Corporate Media Relations