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Maynard awarded highest civilian honor in South Carolina

September 25, 2015 12:45 PM

By Jonathon Braden
USTA South Carolina

Rex Maynard has a new award for his already crowded trophy case, and it might be the most prestigious honor the longtime tennis advocate has earned.

Maynard was presented with the Order of the Palmetto on Thursday night in Belton, his hometown and where he's spent almost all his life. The award is considered the highest civilian honor given to South Carolina citizens for their lifetime service and achievements to the state or the U.S. It was first awarded by Governor John C. West in 1971.

A reception was held in Maynard's honor last week. From left to right: Thomas McAllister; Kathleen McAllister, who nominated Maynard for the honor; Rep. Mike Gambrell of Anderson; Maynard; and Sen. Billy O'Dell of Ware Shoals. Rep. Gambrell and Sen. O'Dell presented the Order of the Palmetto on behalf of Gov. Nikki Haley. (Submitted photo)

Throughout his life, Maynard has volunteered with numerous civic and religious organizations. In the tennis world, he's known as a spirited volunteer who has given years of his life to the sport.

"The generous contribution of your time and talents to so many organizations throughout the area and your passion for the game of tennis have not gone unnoticed and will have a lasting impact for years to come," Gov. Nikki Haley wrote in a letter to Maynard. "In the world of making a positive difference, you have been an incredibly effective leader to those around you."

Since the late 1970s, Maynard has led the Palmetto Championships, South Carolina's state qualifier for boys and girls interested in playing at USTA National Championships. Maynard also has served on the boards of USTA South Carolina, USTA Southern and the USTA, as well as on numerous USTA committees.

In recent years, Maynard has received a number of awards as organizations have sought to honor him for his decades of service. Last year, the USTA awarded Maynard with the Eve Kraft Community Service Award, which is given to individuals who have made significant contributions over a long period of time to tennis in their communities.

Click here to learn why Maynard gives to Belton more than anywhere else.