American Tennis Player and Social Activist. Widely recognized as the first outstanding African-American men's tennis champion, Arthur Ashe was the first African-American to represent his country in Davis Cup play (1963), the first African-American man to win the U.S. Open singles title (1968), the first African-American man to win the Wimbledon singles title (1975), and the first African-American to captain the Davis Cup team (1981). He also won the NCAA team and indiviual titles at UCLA in 1965, the Australian Open singles title in 1970, and the Australian Open doubles championship in 1977. He was further noted for his off-court accomplishments, including his service as a lieutenant in the United States Army, his service as president and co-founder of the Association of Tennis Professionals, and his writing of "Hard Road to Glory," a three-volume history of African-Americans in sport. After contracting the HIV virus in a cardiovascular bypass operation in 1983, Ashe would become an active speaker and fundraiser for AIDS research before succumbing to the disease in 1993. He was memorialized on Monument Avenue in Richmond, Virginia, in 1996, the first African-American to receive that honor.
Bio by: Stuthehistoryguy