Northern Chapter Focus is on Community

From left to right: Todd McDonald, Jack Aschenback, Mike LynchOne year ago when the incoming Northern Chapter Executive Board took office, their first actions were to conduct a Board meeting focusing on how the Board could make a difference, both within the Chapter and in area communities. Secondly, the Board concentrated on how they were going to achieve this when the world economy was going down the tubes and the luxury of golf was becoming space available.

The answer was simple, “Give more than you receive” and maybe, just maybe, there would be a return or reward. That’s just what the Board did. They got involved in the community building a home with Habitat for Humanity in Fernandina Beach, Florida. Not only did they help build a home, the entire Chapter raised extra funds, over $1,800.00 from personal donations of the Chapters Professionals to help a family in need. This relationship with Habitat for Humanity will continue for many years to come.

At the same time, a partnership was developed with Capt. Gary Wilson of the Salvation Army of Jacksonville. In January of 2009, a program called “Shirts Fore Shirts” was introduced to the Chapter members. The program was a no brainier Simply bring in a used shirt for donation to the Salvation Army and get 25 percent off the purchase of a new shirt. Members didn’t bring one, they brought five or six.

Through November 2009 many clubs reported record sales and donations, a pure win-win situation. Clubs receiving outstanding success and recognition were Todd Bork from San Jose Country Club, John Upton of the Palencia Club, Todd McDonald from Amelia National, and Ed Tucker from Sawgrass Country Club. All totaled, the Chapter has collected more than 2,000 shirts for donation to the Salvation Army and the rehabilitation of those in need. This not including a drive to have club members donate other articles to help with the cause. And, that they did.

Not only did we open up community involvement, but from this, we found out more about our Professionals’ personal involvement with their communities. For example, Jon Fine of Windy Harbor Golf Club partakes in a community theater, or Jack Aschenbach of Amelia National reading to a third grade class, or Wes Tucker of St.Johns Golf Club avidly supports the First Tee of St. Johns County, or Gerry James who visits and mentors those incarcerated as a minister of God. It is amazing what a gift of giving will give in return. A smile, a hand shake, a hug, a thank you, it’s all priceless.

There will be more community involvement in 2010.

The Executive Board

President, Todd McDonald
Vice President, Mike Lynch
Secretary, Jack Aschenbach


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