Kellmeyer is the first inductee for the sport of tennis.
"What a surprise and honor," Kellmeyer said when notified. "If I haven't learned anything in this lifetime, it is that no one gets anywhere alone and I have been one lucky lady to have others there to help me along the way. It's extra special, also, to be honored in my hometown."
Born in Wheeling, Kellmeer and her family relocated to Pittsburgh for two years before they settled in Charleston when she was 6 years old. Her love for tennis started early and she was winning local titles at the Charleston Tennis Club at age 11. She won two state singles titles at Oglebay Park in Wheeling (1957-58) before she became, at age 15, the youngest woman at the time to compete in the U.S. Nationals at Forest Hills, N.Y.
A U.S. Wightman Cup Team member in 1963, she went on to be the No. 1 player from 1964-66 at the University of Miami, where she also became the first woman to compete on a Division 1 men's team. As an adult, she was ranked nationally in both singles and doubles and competed at Wimbledon and the U.S. Open.
In 1966, while serving as athletic director at Marymount College in Boca Raton, Fla., she spearheaded a lawsuit that led to the dismantling of an Association for Intercollegiate Athletics for Women rule that had prohibited athletic scholarships from being awarded to female athletes at colleges across the nation. The landmark case paved the way for Title IX and contributed greatly to the increase of female athletes in intercollegiate athletics.
From 1973-76, she was the tour director for the Virginia Slims Circuit and, in 1973, she became the first employee, and director, of the World Tennis Association and has played a critical role for four decades in the development of women's tennis around the world for the WTA.
The WTA Player Service Award is named the "Peachy Kellmeyer Player Service Award" and she was inducted into the International Tennis Hall of Fame in 2011. The Hall Museum, located in Newport, R.I., also features a permanent Peachy Kellmeyer exhibit.
The 82-year-old West Virginia Sports Writers Association originated the Hall of Fame in 1950 with inductee plaques located in the upper lobby of the Charleston Civic Center Coliseum.