Friday, December 29, 2006

New to the Scene: Golf Foundation of Texas

A press release crossed the transom in the Texas Golf wire room not too long ago, a press release announcing the 2007 Golf Expo in Austin on March 9-11.

Described as the "largest golf exposition in Central Texas," the 2007 Golf Expo "will feature new products and seminars, and welcome golf professionals, retailers, manufacturers and golfers of all skill levels to gather, train, educate and see the latest, up-to-date equipment in the game today." Admission will be $8 to $10 at the door, or free for those who join the Golf Foundation of Texas.

And that's what caught my eye: Golf Foundation of Texas. What is the GFT? What's its purpose? Who's behind it? The GFT was new to me.

The Golf Foundation of Texas was announced in early December, it turns out (by the well-connected PR firm of Meng & Associations, which has many high-profile clients in the golf industry).

Here is part of the press release announcing the formation of the GFT:

AUSTIN, Texas — The future of Texas golfers has never been brighter, and the newly established Golf Foundation of Texas plans to ensure that future with new
financial scholarships for young Texas golfers. Created to educate and inspire Texans that have an interest in golf, the all-new Golf Foundation of Texas (GFT) is a non-profit organization dedicated to providing educational opportunities for the purpose of promoting golf and fostering interest in the game.

As its primary mission, the Golf Foundation of Texas is awarding financial scholarships to high school seniors who are planning to attend Texas-accredited institutions.

"Many young adults enjoy sports of all kinds, and it’s through their participation of sports and golf that they learn important life skills," says Amy Blakely, marketing director for the Golf Foundation of Texas. "Golf offers the opportunity to experience the rewards of personal achievement and teaches self-discipline, co-operation and respect. Our primary goal is to provide young Texans with the chances they need to receive those rewards and to create educational opportunities through the advancement of golf."

In an email, Ms. Blakely identified the Golf Foundation of Texas board members:

  • Nick Spiropolous, Lakeway (interim executive director)
  • Don Blakely, Liberty Hill
  • Matt Morrow, Georgetown
  • Kelly Webb, Round Rock
  • Guy Gabarino, Round Rock
  • Theresa Carney, Austin

The Golf Foundation of Texas is a non-profit 501(c)(3) organization.

"Like many Texans, we want to make a brighter future for the next generation. By joining the Foundation, or by making a contribution, golfers and businesses can make these scholarships possible," Amy Blakely said. "It’s up to all of us to ensure the golfing lifestyle is enjoyed by Texans, now and in the future."

The 2007 Golf Expo in Austin in March is considered the group's kick-off event. For more information on the expo, or the Golf Foundation of Texas, visit the GFT Web site at www.txgolf.org, or call 800-694-8680.

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