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Gordon Jorgensen, Former President of the USTA Passes Away at 86

June 18, 2007 05:38 PM

Gordon Jorgensen, 86, of Indian Wells and Rancho Santa Fe, CA, passed away peacefully on Sunday June 10th, 2007 7:43 a.m. at his home in Indian Wells, surrounded by his loving family.

He was born in Chicago Illinois on April 29, 1921, his parents emigrated from Denmark and taken up residence there, though they passed away in the early thirties (the depression years). After graduating from Carl Schurz high school he obtained a job as a billing clerk and pursued part-time studies at the University of Chicago.

At the outset of world war two he secured an appointment at the USMS Radio Communication School, graduating eight months later with the grade of Ensign. He served in the north pacific, Indian Ocean, and south pacific theaters of war, receiving his discharge papers as Lt (Jg) from the U.S. Coast Guard in December 1945.

He immediately enrolled at the school of engineering, the University of Washington, graduating with a Bachelor of Science degree in electrical engineering, in 1948. He continued his graduate studies in business and management.

He joined the consulting engineering firm of R.W. Beck and associates, rising rapidly in the firm, becoming a partner in 1964 and subsequently president of its international operations.

He is the author of many papers on engineering matters and has testified before courts and commissions on electric power and regulatory matters. He has been honored by the government of Honduras for his leadership role in reorganizing and restructuring the country's electric power complex. He is recognized in Who's Who in America, Who's Who in Engineering, Who's Who in Finance.

As busy as he was Gordon still found time to peruse his favorite sport of tennis. He played in amateur events both in the United States, Europe and Canada and found time to be of assistance in the administrative aspects of the game, serving in the capacity of the president of the Phoenix District Tennis Assoc.; the Southwestern Tennis Association; board member of the United States Tennis Association; chairman United States Davis Cup Committee (7 years); chairman, U. S. Open; and president of the United States Tennis Association (1987-1988).

He also found time to serve tennis world wide, serving as vice president of the International Tennis Federation (4 years), the umbrella organization of tennis.
He is survived by his brother Jack, his wife Ruth Barnes Jorgensen, and his children, Karen, David and Susan.

Family and friends will miss his graciousness, kindness, and delightful sense of humor.
In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to the Gordon Jorgensen Scholarship Fund at the Barnes Family Youth Tennis Center, 4490 W. Point Loma Blvd, San Diego, CA, 92107.