Who hasn’t heard of Serena Williams? Even if sports aren’t your thing, you’ve definitely heard Serena’s name associated with the best of the best in tennis. She is universally recognized as one of the greatest tennis players of all time, after all. More recently, she's also been in the news after having a precious baby girl (Alexis Olympia Ohanian Jr.) with husband and Reddit co-founder Alexis Ohanian.
So, whether you're familiar with her as a phenomenal athlete or a celebrity, there is plenty more to know! She's been making headlines throughout her career, since the early 2000s, and rightly so! After all, she first ranked number one in the world for female tennis players at the age of 20. Serena Williams is not only a record-shattering tennis player and mother; she's also an activist, humanitarian, and all-around incredible person.
Familiarize yourself with Serena's story, and check out these 30 facts you probably didn't know about Serena Williams!
What's her name?
via: GettySerena’s middle name is Jameka.
She goes for gold.
via: GettySpecifically, four. She’s won four Olympic gold medals.
You may have seen her on certain TV shows.
Serena has also acted, in shows like Law & Order: SVU, ER, and she’s even done a bit of voice acting in Avatar: The Last Airbender.
Her birthday is coming up soon!
Our tennis queen was born on September 26, 1981.
She has two favorite animals, and they’re both great.
Serena Williams was born in Michigan.
via: GettySaginaw, Michigan, to be exact.
Her skills have really paid off.
via: GettySerena was won more in prize money from her career than any other female athlete—over $84 million.
Serena and her mother are both Jehovah’s Witnesses.
via: GettySerena was raised as such, though she doesn’t follow every practice. She does often thank Jehovah after winning matches!
With all the traveling she does, she has a favorite city.
via: Getty(It’s Rome.)
Which makes sense, as it’s where she found love!
via: GettySerena and her husband, Alex Ohanian, reportedly met at a hotel in Rome, back in 2015. How much work does it take to be number one? Find out on the next page!
Her sister is tennis pro Venus Williams.
via: GettySerena is the younger sister by fifteen months.
Serena has been playing tennis for a long time.
via: GettyShe started at age three—it helps that her father was a tennis coach!
She has an appreciation for other sports, too.
Her favorite sport to watch besides tennis is gymnastics.
Serena became the oldest female tennis player to be ranked number 1.
via: GettyRankings began in 1975, and Serena broke this record in 2013, at the age of 31. It was the sixth time in her career she’d been ranked number 1.
In 2007, Serena appeared in rapper Common’s music video.In Common’s "I Want You" music video, she appears alongside performers Alicia Keys and Kanye West. Next, we've got more on Serena, from the strangest thing in her gym bag to the song that gets her through a rigorous workout!
The oddest thing in her gym bag is OPI nail polish.
via: GettyThen again, she does have her own OPI line.
And the most embarrassing song stored on her phone is…
“MMMBop" by Hanson. How ‘90s of her!
What gets her through a tough workout?
Cranking David Bowie’s “Fame." Sound advice for anyone putting together a workout playlist!
Serena won her first major title in 1999.
via: GettyAfter beating Martina Hingis in the final, she got her first title at the U.S. Open.
Serena Williams is very well-read.
via: GettyHer favorite author is Maya Angelou. Next up, how Serena Williams is a multilingual powerhouse doing good around the world!
Color me surprised!
via: GettySerena’s favorite color is purple.
She’s got a go-to kitchen gadget.
Which is her toaster oven. Same, tbh.
Did you know she speaks French fluently?
In 2008, she established the Serena Williams Foundation.
via: GettyHer nonprofit was founded to help both American youth touched by violent crime and children around the world.
As such, she has helped to build a school in Uganda.
There’s a reason she’s the best.
via: GettySerena had been ranked no. 1 for 253 weeks in her career.
She also hold a record for consecutive weeks at no. 1.
via: GettySerena is tied only with Steffi Graf for longest consecutive weeks ranked number 1, with 186 weeks.
Serena has great musical tastes.
Her favorite singers include Mariah Carey and Brandy.
In 2011, she was appointed a UNICEF international goodwill ambassador.
via: GettyMakes sense—she’s definitely done a lot of good!
Serena Williams has collected 23 Grand Slam titles.
via: GettyThis surpassed Steffi Graf for the Open Era Lead! Share this story with anyone who ought to know a little more about our tennis queen!