The Valero Texas Open at La Cantera & PGA TOUR Aim to Reach $1 Billion Milestone

The PGA TOUR and its tournaments are celebrating the spirit of giving and teamwork through Drive to a Billion, a campaign aimed at reaching the $1 billion milestone in total charitable contributions within the year. The campaign will benefit more tha 100 cities and towns where PGA TOUR, Champions Tour and Nationwide Tour tournaments are played, and will include community and on-site activities showcasing the good works and partnerships in each area.To commemorate the first recorded donation of $10,000 made by the Palm Beach Invitational on Long Island in 1938, a ceremonial tee shot will be hit at events on all three Tours this year with a special 1938 driver, which will act as a “torch” for the Drive to a Billion campaign as it travels the country. At the Valero Texas Open at the Westin La Cantera Resort, the ceremonial tee shot took place at noon today at the driving range at The Resort Course to launch tournament week activities. Bill Greehey, chairman & CEO of Valero Energy Corporation, defending champion Bart Bryant and six children representing charities supported by Valero Texas Open and the Valero Texas Open Benefit for Children Golf Classic simultaneously hit a tee shot using vintage 1938 persimmon headed drivers.


“We are excited and proud to be a part of the PGA TOUR’s celebration of golf’s commitment to charity. It is a commitment that sets us apart from all other major professional sports in the United States. Over the past four years, that commitment has been particularly strong in San Antonio, where Valero has succeeded in placing the Valero Texas Open in the top five on the PGA TOUR in charitable giving,” says Tony Piazzi, president & CEO of Golf San Antonio.


A cornerstone of the program is “Giving Back Day,” where each tournament celebrates the organizations and people who have dedicated themselves to improving the community. As part of “Giving Back Day,” PGA TOUR players and wives will participate in community service activities to spotlight longtime charity partners. During the Valero Texas Open, PGA TOUR player, to be named, will visit Respite Care of San Antonio and spend some time with children who live at Respite Care Davidson House.Entering the 2005 season, the TOUR and its tournaments have generated more than $909 million for charity since 1938. Locally, the Texas Open has generated over $12.7 million for charity; with $8.7 million of that total being contributed since Valero Energy Corporation became the title sponsor in 2002. The Valero Texas Open has been recognized as the fifth most charitable TOUR event for the past two years. Over 300 children’s charities and schools have been beneficiaries of the Valero Texas Open, making this historic tournament a cornerstone of many San Antonio and area charitable organizations.


“Everyone who has ever attended or been involved with the Valero Texas Open at La Cantera can take pride in knowing that their ticket purchases and donations of time and money have directly benefited people in need in this community,” said PGA TOUR Commissioner Tim Finchem. “The PGA TOUR’s mission is rooted in giving back and we look forward to celebrating this memorable milestone with the tournaments, fans, players and sponsors who support us in each town we visit.”


Other elements of the Drive to a Billion campaign include:
·Commemorative Drive to a Billion collector pins which are available online at www.pgatour.com.
·A National television and print PSA campaign. TV spots during the week of the Valero Texas Open at La Cantera will be tagged with the local tournament. The television spots include:
o“Signs” – Features Davis Love III, John Daly, Todd Hamilton, Jay Haas, Stewart Cink and Kenny Perry standing with groups of beneficiaries in front of road signs in New York, Dallas, Monterey, Chicago, Phoenix and Houston that show dollar amounts donated to those communities, instead of city populations.


o“History” – A poignant montage of images from the past and present that captures players and charities that have benefited from the PGA TOUR and its tournaments over the years.

How the PGA TOUR Gives Back
In addition to relying on almost 80,000 volunteers a year to run its events, nearly all of the TOUR’s tournaments are 501(c)(3) organizations, designed to donate 100 percent of net proceeds to local charities. The TOUR and its tournaments visit more than 85 communities and partner with more than 2,000 charities every year – from hospitals and youth development organizations, to growth-of-the-game programs and food banks.


The TOUR reached the $500 million mark in 1999 and has been focused on significantly increasing donations to charity every year. Due to the success and health of the organization, the TOUR will reach the $1 billion dollar milestone by giving the second $500 million in just 7 years.


About Golf San Antonio
Golf San Antonio (GSA) is a not-for-profit organization committed to using golf as a tool to make a positive, lasting economic, social and charitable impact on San Antonio and other communities. This mission is shared by GSA’s corporate partner, Valero Energy Corporation. GSA’s signature line of business is producing and managing the Valero Texas Open at La Cantera. Golf San Antonio’s Web site address is www.golfsanantonio.org.


About Valero Energy Corporation
Valero Energy Corporation is a Fortune 500 company based in San Antonio, with approximately 22,000 employees and annual revenue of about $70 billion. The company owns and operates 18 refineries throughout the United States, Canada and the Caribbean with a combined throughput capacity of approximately 3.3 million barrels per day, making it the largest refiner in North America. Valero is also one of the nation's largest retail operators with more than 4,700 retail and branded wholesale outlets in the United States, Canada and the Caribbean under various brand names including Valero, Diamond Shamrock, Shamrock, Ultramar, and Beacon. Please visit www.valero.com for more information.


About the PGA TOUR
The PGA TOUR is a tax-exempt membership organization of professional golfers. Its primary purpose is to provide significant competitive earnings opportunities for past, current and future members of the PGA TOUR, Champions Tour and Nationwide Tour; to protect the integrity of the game; and to help grow the reach of the game in the U.S. and around the world. Approximately 110 events will be contested on the three Tours in 2004, for nearly $320 million in prize money. The PGA TOUR’s Web site address is www.pgatour.com.

 

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