Hot on the heels of the 50th anniversary of the Original 9 signing their famous $1 contracts with promoter Gladys Heldman in September 1970, Billie Jean King has released a compelling audio documentary in which she reflects on those tumultuous times, and the developments that followed.
The Dollar Rebellion: How Billie Jean King and the Original 9 Became the Change They Wanted To See ranges from the legendary King’s sporty upbringing by strict yet supportive parents, to the gender inequalities that were only exacerbated by the introduction of Open Tennis in 1968, to the lasting impact of the nine trailblazing women who risked their careers to form their own circuit.
Noting that, half a century later, WTA stars continue to dominate Forbes magazine’s list of the earning power of female athletes on and off the court, King states: “You can trace that back to the Original 9, starting that tournament in Houston. That is the birth of women’s professional tennis.”
My new Audible Original, The Dollar Rebellion, is out today.— Billie Jean King (@BillieJeanKing) November 19, 2020
I can’t wait for you to hear the story of the Original Nine in my own words.
Listen now only on @audible_com. https://t.co/SVr29JVW2R#OriginalNine #HistoryMatters pic.twitter.com/0lOzSk79AF
Alongside King, the Original 9 comprises Peaches Bartkowicz, Rosie Casals, Judy Dalton, Julie Heldman, Kerry Melville Reid, Kristy Pigeon, Nancy Richey and Valerie Ziegenfuss.
Collectively, they are on the ballot for induction to the International Tennis Hall of Fame in the contributor category – the first group to be considered for the honor. Results of the vote for the Class of 2021 are expected to be announced in January.
Billie Jean King’s audio documentary is available on Amazon’s Audible Original platform.