Legendary Palisades High School tennis coach Bud Kling was inducted into the Southern California Jewish Sports Hall of Fame on June 26.
The honorees include high school, college, professional and amateur standouts, media representatives and community members. The Hall of Fame, which was established in 1990, honors men and women who have played a significant role in shaping the sports history of the Southern California community. More than 200 outstanding sports personalities are included in the Hall of Fame honor roll.
Kling joins several Palisadians who have been previously honored, including Kathy Kohner (Zuckerman) aka Gidget (surfing), Geoffrey and Mitchell Schwartz (Palisades High School standouts, who went on to play in the NFL), Gene Selznick (volleyball) and Amy Alcott (golf).
Kling, who leads all coaches in the City Section with 50 team titles (including boys and girls teams), was inducted into the Los Angeles City Section Hall of Fame in 2017.
Kling grew up on the Westside and earned his bachelor’s and master’s degrees from UCLA in 1969 and 1972, respectively.
He came to Palisades High School in 1977 as a substitute teacher and by the next year he was full-time. He had previously coached football at University High, but became the boys tennis coach at Pali and over the years his teams have won four national championships.
In 1984, Kling also took over the girls program, coaching until 2008. He returned as coach in 2015. During those 26 years, his teams took 17 City titles.
Kling is a two-time State Coach of the Year and has been a finalist for National Coach of the Year.
He and wife, Cheryl, have two children, Ryan and Alex, both of whom played for Kling at PaliHi.
In a 2019 UCLA Alumni story, Kling said, “Over the length of my career I have had a lot of great kids. I’ve watched them grow up and I have been able to keep up with many of my past players on our own alumni page on Facebook. It’s a thrill to watch players work hard and improve. Since tennis is an individual sport, for many it is their first time being on a team. They learn a lot on how to work as a group and depend on each other.”