Andrea Jaeger details her true passion in ‘First Service’ book

Andrea Jaeger

October 20, 2021

Andrea Jaeger (40)

Andrea Jaeger gained notoriety for her dominance on the court. But it has been her second act off the court that’s been most rewarding.

Her memoir, First Service: Following God’s Calling and Finding Life Purpose, chronicles this journey. Rising to prominence as a young tennis sensation during the 1980s, Andrea Jaeger found herself unfulfilled. She has since dedicated her entire life to philanthropy and religion. In doing so, she discovered her true calling.

Although most of the book is about her pursuit of a higher purpose, it’s necessary to explore how she arrived on this path. First Service begins by detailing her tennis career. As a teenage star, she quickly found success at an early age. In fact, at just 15 years old, she was the youngest to be seeded at Wimbledon. This was a record at the time. From there, she climbed to the No. 2 ranking in the world. She also reached the semifinals or finals at least once in every Grand Slam.

While her accolades and accomplishments have been impressive, she has not been immune to setbacks. However, even when injuries derailed her career prematurely, Andrea Jaeger continued to flourish. She drew her perseverance and resilience from her love of tennis, faith, and God, a relationship she developed since childhood. Unwavering commitment to these beliefs has endured throughout her life. No matter what challenges she faced, this faith has carried her through. And this spiritual journey drove her to new pursuits as well. While tennis opened up opportunities, she has always chased another mission. She desired only to help others.

When she retired from professional tennis in 1985, Andrea Jaeger charted a new career in service. Tennis provided a platform, and the proceeds, to fuel her real passion. Since then, she has devoted all her time, fame, and resources to help children with cancer and reaching those in need. This culminated in the creation of the Little Star Foundation. It was built around a simple goal. The nonprofit is designed to improve the lives of children around the world who have cancer or in need. Programs and activities support these participants and their physical, mental, and emotional health. Throughout the pages of First Service, it’s evident that Andrea Jaeger views this organization as her greatest accomplishment. And many others would agree. In operation for over 36 years, the Little Star Foundation has earned countless awards and recognition worldwide.

Despite being published nearly two decades ago, First Service has never been more relevant. Mental and personal health have gained increased attention as athletes feel more empowered to speak out. While today’s athletes are commanding headlines, it’s important to remember that Andrea Jaeger was a trailblazer in many ways. Unafraid to follow her heart, she walked away from the game, choosing instead to pursue more rewarding interests.