News

HSJGA BRINGS FIRST TEE-HAWAII UNDER ITS UMBRELLA

Lihue, Hawaii (January 12, 2021) – The HSJGA has partnered with youth development organization First Tee to manage First Tee – Hawaii, effective January 1, 2021. This new partnership strengthens the opportunities to impact the growth of golf in Hawaii for HSJGA which has been primarily known for it’s competitive programming, team events, national and international travel opportunities, and pathway to college for Hawaii’s junior golfers. Under the HSJGA, First Tee — Hawaii will play an important role of introducing youth to the game of golf and using it as a powerful vehicle to empower kids to build inner strength and life skills they can carry to everything that they do.

First Tee – Hawaii has been in operation since 2017 and has made a strong impact, primarily on Oahu, delivering experiences that build character using the game of golf. First Tee, Mark Rolfing and HSJGA began discussions in late 2019 on how the two organizations could partner in an effort to expand First Tee – Hawaii and reach more kids. Over the past year the leadership from HSJGA and First Tee – Hawaii have worked closely in an effort to transition to a model that will bolster the impact of the two organizations and reach more kids from across the state. Moving forward, the golf industry will see a new Board of Directors, Staff Structure and Operational Committees that will lead the HSJGA and provide programs that enable kids to build the strength of character that empowers them through a lifetime of new challenges.

Statement from Mary Bea Porter-King – President, HSJGA

“I have always felt golf is a great game, especially for children, it’s a game for a lifetime.  It teaches so many life lessons helping children better prepare for the future. One of the primary goals of the HSJGA is to grow the game, so I am confident with the addition of First Tee — Hawaii programming under the leadership of the HSJGA, we will continue to grow the game and develop confident and healthy children to become future leaders in our communities.”  

 Statement from Mark Rolfing – Secretary, HSJGA

“The focus and commitment to growing the game locally is more important than ever before. In dealing with the current pandemic and the challenges related to Hawaii travel, we must focus on the game here in our own back yard for golf to remain sustainable long term.”

Meet the new Board – HERE

Junior Golf Pathway – HERE

Statement from Matt Rollins- Executive Director, Hawaii State Junior Golf Association

“I feel this is a great opportunity for the two organizations to combine efforts and identify gaps that exist in the industry in Hawaii. If we focus our efforts on geographical and underserved areas in Hawaii that don’t have junior golf programming, this could be such a benefit to those communities. Also, if we focus on the school system and the Community Program that partners with youth associations then we will be providing opportunities that don’t currently exist and growing the game locally.”

The HSJGA is ready to expand its impact on kids through golf, and will be working closely with its industry partners to ensure a positive impact and great opportunities for Hawaii’s youth.

For more information, please visit HSJGA.org and firstteehawaii.org or contact Lauren Yama, Director of Communications & Special Events at lauren@hsjga.org or 808-532-0559.