No professional sport gives back quite like golf.
The PGA announced Wednesday that the PGA TOUR and its tournaments donated a record-setting $166 million to charitable causes last year. For those counting, that’s a staggering $2.46 billion since the first charitable contribution came through in 1938 at the Palm Beach Invitational.
The good news was delivered by PGA TOUR Commissioner Jay Monahan, who was accompanied by Bob Steber, a tournament volunteer for 50 years who has only missed one day on the “job.”
Steber’s presence was absolutely appropriate. The PGA leans on over 100,000 volunteers to organize tournaments so they can be formatted into non-profits with 100% of the proceeds going to charity.
“The record-breaking charitable donations are due to the hard work and selfless efforts of many and will ensure that numerous lives continue to be positively impacted in the communities where we play,” Jay Monahan said during a press conference at the Farmers Insurance Open. “PGA TOUR fans, tournaments, players, sponsors and volunteers together all helped make this possible.”
So where is the money going? Hospitals, food banks, children’s and military organizations, and “growth-of-the-game programs” top the list.
According to the PGA TOUR, the tournaments that collected the most money (all more than $10 million) in 2016 were the AT&T Pebble Beach National Pro-Am, Valero Texas Open, DEAN & DELUCA Invitational and the John Deere Classic.
There’s no doubt golf is a driver for making the world a better place, and the PGA TOUR continues to tee up countless opportunities.