Billie Jean King praises women’s rights icon


Tennis legend Billie Jean King has treated the audience at a Rochester speaking event to a few souvenirs.

The 72-year-old Hall of Famer was the keynote speaker Wednesday at an annual luncheon honoring the birthday of suffragist Susan B. Anthony, who was born on Feb. 15, 1820. Anthony lived in Rochester for more than 50 years and is buried in a cemetery in the city.

King said during her speech that Anthony’s life continues to inspire those fighting for equality, and she urged attendees to “keep making history.”

After her speech, King used a racket to swat more than a couple dozen autographed tennis balls into the crowd.

King was a trailblazer for women’s sports in the 1970s, famously playing Bobby Riggs in the “Battle of the Sexes” match in 1973.