Nike names building after Serena Williams
Sportswear company Nike has announced it will name one of its buildings after tennis legend Serena Williams.
In a statement on Thursday, Nike said the new Serena Williams Building demonstrates its commitment to championing athletes.
At 1 million square feet, the Serena Williams Building will include 140,000 square feet of showrooms and workspace, a footwear materials library, a color lab, and the two-story, 140-seat Olympia Theater, named after the tennis star’s daughter.
The building is also where Nike will house the company’s Consumer Creation teams, giving them access to 200,000 square feet of lab space for developing and testing new products for the company.
“These residents, representing Design, Consumer Insights, the Women’s, Men’s and Kids constructs, and Apparel and Footwear Product Merchandising, spend their days collaborating on and creating the future of sport,” Nike said in a statement.
John Hoke, Nike’s chief design officer, said the new building embodies Williams’s legacy as a “force for positive change.”
“Architecture has long been a creative catalyst for Nike. A manifestation of form and function following footprint, this building embodies Serena’s legacy as a force for positive change. It is the art to the LeBron James Innovation Center’s science, allowing us to know and serve athletes like never before,” Hoke said in a statement.
Williams, a 23-time Grand Slam champion, recently joined a bid to purchase English Premier League soccer club Chelsea F.C. from Russian oligarch Roman Abramovich, who was sanctioned by Western powers amid Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.
Williams, considered to be one of the greatest athletes ever, expressed her gratitude toward Nike for naming the building after her in an Instagram post.
“When I was just a kid I visited the @nike campus and I saw that athletes get buildings! After that visit, I knew I wanted two things; to be a Nike athlete and to have a building. I set my goals high,” Williams wrote. “And now, here we are — officially unveiling the Serena building at the Nike campus. Blood sweat and many tears, many trophies — it is beyond an honor and giving me chill bumps. I am so grateful to Nike and the Nike team. Can you believe it? I have a BUILDING Y’ALL!!! This is CRAZY!!!”