John Deere, helping to provide both equitable and inclusive opportunities to women and young females.
DAYTONA BEACH, Fla., July 20, 2022 – The Ladies Professional Golf Association (LPGA) Foundation announced today the next recipients of the Renee Powell Grant. The grant program honors Renee Powell’s lifelong commitment to golf and will help assist current and prospective LPGA*USGA Girls Golf sites create partnerships and outreach opportunities with youth organizations serving Black girls.
Sites were selected based on their geographic location, current LPGA*USGA Girls Golf membership demographics, and longstanding commitment to engaging Black girls in their program.
The 13 sites that will receive $30,000 in grant funding are:
- LPGA*USGA Girls Golf – Atlanta – Charlie Yates
- LPGA*USGA Girls Golf – Mobile, AL at Azalea City Golf Course
- LPGA*USGA Girls Golf – Conyers
- LPGA*USGA Girls Golf – A Perfect Swing of Charlotte
- LPGA*USGA Girls Golf – Detroit East
- LPGA*USGA Girls Golf – Houston at Hermann Park Golf Course
- LPGA*USGA Girls Golf – First Tee – Virginia Peninsula
- LPGA*USGA Girls Golf – Doris Ross Reddick Elementary
- LPGA*USGA Girls Golf – Southeast LA at SCGA Junior
- LPGA*USGA Girls Golf – First Tee – Greater Baltimore
- LPGA*USGA Girls Golf – Greater Cleveland
- LPGA*USGA Girls Golf – First Tee – Central Ohio – Heritage Golf Club
- LPGA*USGA Girls Golf – First Tee – Lake County
“For a long time, I was sort of a lone ranger out there,” said Renee Powell, the second African American woman to ever play on the LPGA Tour. “To see young girls now that love the game and look like me, that have great ambitions to continue to play and to eventually play on the LPGA Tour, it's wonderful to see. They are so positive, which is good. They have goals, and they're competing. I have never seen so many young girls of color that are playing the game and loving the game, so it makes me feel really good about it.”
“The Renee Powell Grant will help support the program in many ways. There is no charge for girls to join our Girls Golf program,” said Maulana Dotch, Site Director for LPGA*USGA Girls Golf – Houston at Hermann Park Golf Course. “The grant will help cover expenses for instruction, clinics, golf course access fees, and needed equipment and supplies to operate and instruct the classes. We want to be able to help with golf clubs for the girls, helping the families ensure that the girls get what they need. Lastly, we plan to use some funds to do more community outreach. We do not want any girl to feel left out. Once they are a part of our program, we want them to be and feel like a golfer.”
Awarded through the LPGA Foundation and the LPGA Renee Powell Fund, grants provide access, instruction, equipment and additional expenses required to be introduced to the game of golf and stay engaged with the sport. Through this effort, the LPGA Foundation continues to further its commitment to creating an engaging, safe, inclusive and diverse environment to empower, inspire and transform the lives of all women and girls through the game of golf.
At the Renee Powell Clearview Legacy Benefit on June 27 at East Potomac Golf Links in Washington, D.C., an additional $10,000 in Renee Powell Grant funding was awarded to three programs in the local community who are changing the face of golf: Wake Robin Golf Club; Girls Golf – First Tee – Greater Washington D.C.; and Golf. My Future. My Game.
“It is indeed an honor and a privilege for Girls Golf Conyers to receive the Renee Powell Grant,” said Executive Director, Carolina Mincey. “This grant will allow us to continue to change the face of golf through many more girls. Because of this grant, we will be able host an event that will allow many girls within the community an opportunity to learn and play the game. We are excited to be able to purchase training aids, offer scholarships toward membership fees, reduce fees and purchase equipment to assist and guide the girls for better performance.”
LPGA*USGA Girls Golf alumna Mariah Stackhouse, who was recently named a Girls Golf Ambassador, spoke of the Renee Powell Grants’ impact on growing the game.
"I think one of the best ways that we're going to grow the game of golf and get young girls involved is to create opportunities for camaraderie and friendship while learning this game, and that’s what the LPGA*USGA Girls Golf program offered me growing up,” said Stackhouse. "It was a space to be around a lot of other girls who are also enjoying playing the game but building those friendships and making it exciting to continue to show up at the golf course. It’s about introduction to coaching, but most importantly, camaraderie and building that love for the game. That's what kids need in order to be passionate about it.”
Thanks to efforts including the LPGA’s #HoodieForGolf, which raised over $390k for the Renee Powell Fund and Clearview Legacy Foundation, Renee Powell Grants continue to impact LPGA*USGA Girls Golf programs that serve Black communities. This year’s grants are also made possible with support from John Deere, helping to provide both equitable and inclusive opportunities to women and young females. In addition to grant funding, John Deere will sponsor a behind-the-scenes experience at the 2022 Kroger Queen City Championship presented by P&G, hosted at Kenwood Country Club in Cincinnati, Ohio.
“Renee Powell has paved the way for Black women around the world to not only think differently about the game of golf but to dream big,” said Mara Downing, Vice President of Corporate Communications & Brand at John Deere. “Renee’s influential legacy of challenging the status quo inspires other women to embrace new opportunities and diversify the playing field. This grant is just one way to help lives leap forward – a goal we strive to do every day at John Deere.”
Renee Powell Grant funds are directed towards financial aid for Girls Golf members community outreach, partnerships with local youth groups, securing golf course access, transportation to/from the golf course or facility, to increase staffing, and purchase of equipment. Along with the grant funding, the LPGA will provide access to the LPGA’s cultural sensitivity training, assist with connecting the Site Director with a local youth organization serving Black girls, along with branded items and giveaways for the Girls Golf Experience, lesson plans for the program, and at least one LPGA HQ representative to assist with Girls Golf Experience event planning.
Operated in partnership by the LPGA Foundation and the United States Golf Association (USGA), LPGA*USGA Girls Golf is the only national program of its kind that specializes in providing a girl-friendly environment for juniors to play the game of golf. Girls Golf sites provide girls with quality golf instruction led by LPGA and PGA teaching professionals, teaching them valuable life skills along the way. In addition to empowering and inspiring girls, LPGA*USGA Girls Golf is on a continued mission to “change the face of golf.”
“[Renee Powell’s] story is truly remarkable,” said LPGA commissioner Mollie Marcoux Samaan. “She is such a pioneer. She changed golf and continues to change golf through her foundation. She is working day in and day out to provide opportunities. The LPGA wants to do the same thing. We want to introduce the game to people who might not otherwise have the opportunity. And we want to change their lives through the game.”
To make a contribution towards the Renee Powell Grant, please visit www.girlsgolf.org/give.