In the 15 years since she helped spearhead the movement for equal prize money on tennis' biggest stages, Venus Williams has never forgotten what, and for whom, she was fighting for. 

In an exclusive interview with Forbes magazine, the former World No.1 and seven-time Grand Slam champion reflected on her efforts that began 15 years ago, and how her efforts to champion in equality every are still continuing this day. 

Williams famously met with French Open officials in 2005 to advocate on behalf of women's professional tennis players to earn the same prize money as their male counterparts, and wrote an op-ed in the London Times in 2006 that was crucial in bringing about parity in prize money at Wimbledon.

"For me it was simple and clear; it was about standing up for what I believed was right," she told Forbes' Kathy Caprino.

"Tennis has given me so much opportunity in life, including a platform, so when the opportunity came to fight for women across the sport it was an easy decision."

"I spoke up for both myself and people everywhere who were facing, or will face, the same kind of injustice in their lives.

"I’m glad it was able to create a ripple effect and set a precedent. So much positive change has happened since then, and so much positive change is still needed, but I’m happy I was able to do my part and will continue to do so until it doesn’t need to be a conversation anymore."

In 2006, the French Open awarded equal prize money to its men's and women's winners, and followed suit for the entire tournament a year later. Wimbledon also announced that they would award equal prize money to female players in 2007, finally bringing both tournaments in line with the US and Australian Opens. The US Open began the practice in 1973, and the Australian Open in 2001. 

Williams herself became the first woman to benefit from the equalization of prize money at the All-England Club, as she won the 2007 tournament and was awarded the same amount as the men's champion, Roger Federer.

The WTA legend also reflected on the fight for equality, in both pay and elsewhere, in other areas outside of sports. 

"It’s incredible to see how the conversations around equal pay have evolved over the years—it’s a global issue that has finally become a global movement," she continued.

"But the fact that it is still even a conversation means there is still work to be done. Pay disparity is just one element of the overarching issue of inequality, which so many people are too familiar with.

"I will be really happy when the differences between men and women don’t have to be a discussion anymore, and everyone is loved and respected for the person they are."

To read the full interview at Forbes, click here

Evolution of Prize Money: Part 4 - It Takes Passion