20 Military Veterans with Disabilities Named PGA HOPE Ambassadors

20 Military Veterans with Disabilities Named PGA HOPE Ambassadors

November 11, 2019 by PGA

PGA REACH, the 501(c)(3) charitable foundation of the PGA of America, has announced that 20 military Veterans have been named PGA HOPE Ambassadors in celebration of Veterans Day and the 3rd Annual PGA National Day of HOPE.

PGA National Day of HOPE has two goals: Celebrate our nation’s heroes; and raise awareness and support for PGA HOPE (Helping Our Patriots Everywhere), the signature military program for PGA REACH. PGA HOPE is a national program that introduces golf to military Veterans to enhance their physical, mental, social and emotional well-being.

PGA HOPE helps Veterans assimilate back into their communities through the social interaction the game of golf provides, and is offered at no cost to Veterans. Led by PGA Professionals, there are currently more than 90 PGA HOPE programs, helping approximately 2,500 Veterans annually.

The 20 Veterans were named PGA HOPE Ambassadors following the completion of a specialized training program during the Inaugural PGA HOPE National Golf & Wellness Week, which was conducted in October, at Congressional Country Club in Bethesda, Maryland. The four-day program included advanced golf instruction and wellness training.

Each participating Veteran received a specially designed golf and wellness tool kit that included golf training tips, exercises and other recommendations for healthy living. Each new PGA HOPE Ambassador will now represent their respective PGA of America Section and support their fellow Veterans in communities across the country during PGA HOPE clinics and training programs.

20 New PGA HOPE Ambassadors:

Veteran Section Branch
Josh Swindle Carolinas U.S. Army
Eric Schuster Central NY U.S. Army
Bill Wiegand Gateway U.S. Air Force
William Caywood Indiana U.S. Army
Janus Persaud Metropolitan U.S. Marines
Matt Underwood Middle Atlantic U.S. Navy
Daniel Brazzell Midwest U.S. Marines
David Karl Nebraska U.S. Air Force
Chris Solivan New Jersey U.S. Marines
Douglas Jackson North Florida U.S. Marines
Will Stockholm Northern California U.S. Marines
Randy Shack Northern Texas U.S. Army
Sean Sanders Philadelphia U.S. Army
Mary Anderson-Kokell South Florida U.S. Army
Burton Jones Southern Ohio U.S. Air Force
Casey Dorrell Southwest U.S. Army
Clark Harrison Tennessee U.S. Army
Dennis McClure Tri-State U.S. Army
Nick Martone Western NY U.S. Marines
Joseph Robinson Colorado U.S. Army

Key responsibilities for the new PGA HOPE Ambassadors include:

  • Attend PGA HOPE programming, graduations and PGA HOPE fundraising events.
  • Actively discuss and advocate for the PGA HOPE program; recruit Veterans in their home community; educate interested individuals about PGA HOPE.
  • Commit to a personal health and wellness regimen.
  • Commit to positively represent the PGA HOPE program and empower other Veterans to embrace healthier, more positive choices.

“We congratulate each of these 20 heroes on their successful completion of PGA HOPE National Golf & Wellness Week,” said PGA REACH Senior Director Ryan Cannon. “Their commitment to protecting our freedoms and helping others provides inspiration to us all.”

On Sunday, Nov. 17, to further support PGA National Day of HOPE, “CBS Sunday Morning” is scheduled to highlight the golf journey of Renee Powell, PGA/LPGA, the PGA Head Professional at Clearview Golf Club, in East Canton, Ohio—site of the groundbreaking Clearview HOPE program. Powell, a member of the PGA of America Hall of Fame and Board of Directors, and the second woman of color to compete on the LPGA Tour, hosts the first-ever PGA HOPE program specifically for women Veterans. Six of these Veterans participating in the program experienced the opportunity of a lifetime last summer, as they traveled to Scotland in July to spend a week in St. Andrews.

For more information on PGA National Day of HOPE and/or to make a donation, please click here.