BRASELTON, Ga. — The Gary Gilchrist Golf Academy, a full-time signature golf instruction program, announced its sponsorship of the American Junior Golf Association as an Official Partner. The partnership features an endowment of an Achieving Competitive Excellence (ACE) Grant and the naming rights to the Gary Gilchrist Golf Academy Junior All-Star Series, which will provide juniors access to national competitive golf opportunities.
“In looking to partner with an academy, we believe the Gary Gilchrist Golf Academy shares similar values and morales as the AJGA in representing and advancing junior golf,” said Jason Etzen, the AJGA’s executive vice president of corporate partnerships. “We are proud of our association with such a first class organization.”
Through the ACE Grant program, the AJGA offers financial assistance to juniors who can compete at the national junior golf level, but are limited because of financial constraints. The AJGA believes the opportunity to earn a college golf scholarship should not be limited to juniors who can afford to travel and play a national junior golf schedule. The Gary Gilchrist Golf Academy will fund its grant fully by 2011 through an AJGA auction of one full-tuition scholarship at the Academy. The gift will be the AJGA’s fifth endowment commitment in the ACE Grant program’s history.
The Gary Gilchrist Golf Academy Junior All-Star Series is a collection of 10 events specifically designed for boys and girls ages 12–15 and presents opportunities for younger members to develop their skills and earn entry into Open tournaments. Juniors are limited to a maximum combination of five AJGA Open and Junior All-Star Series events during a calendar year. The series concludes with the Junior All-Star Invitational over Columbus Day weekend for winners and top finishers in the Gary Gilchrist Golf Academy / Montverde Academy Junior All-Star Series events.
“A partnership with the AJGA is a tremendous privilege for us,” Gilchrist said. “When it comes to preparing juniors for college there is no better competitive platform than the AJGA and we look forward to being the sponsor of the Junior All-Star Series.”
Gilchrist’s signature golf instruction program debuted in 2008 at Mission Inn Golf and Tennis Resort located in Howey-in-the-Hills, Fla., and plans are in the works for another academy to open in 2009 at Cypress Ridge Golf Club in Arroyo Grande, Calif. The philosophy of the academy includes technical training, high-level academics, fitness, sports psychology and tournament competition experience.
“We are excited to partner with the Gary Gilchrist Golf Academy for the Gary Gilchrist Golf Academy / Montverde Academy Junior All-Star Series,” Etzen said. “Through their support we will be able to upgrade the series to a higher level. We also appreciate the Gary Gilchrist Golf Academy’s commitment to endowing an ACE Grant, a much-needed program in junior golf.”
With over a decade developing some of today's most well-known and respected golfers, Gary Gilchrist has a proven track record for training champions. He served as Director of Golf at IMG Academies in Bradenton, Fla., for 11 years and recently left the IJGA in South Carolina where he served as the Director of Golf for three years. Gilchrist has directed the development of 75 AJGA Rolex Junior All-Americans, six AJGA Rolex Junior Players of the Year, two AJGA Jerry Cole Sportsmanship award winners, two U.S. Amateur champions, two U.S. Junior champions, an NCAA Women's champion, and one Public Links champion.
The American Junior Golf Association is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization dedicated to the overall growth and development of young men and women who aspire to earn college golf scholarships through competitive junior golf. The AJGA, the largest Association of its kind, has an annual junior membership (boys and girls ages 12-18) of more than 5,000 junior golfers from 49 states and 30 foreign countries.
Titleist, the AJGA’s National Sponsor, has been the catalyst and driving force behind the Association’s success since 1989. Rolex Watch USA, which is in its third decade of support, became the inaugural AJGA Premier Partner in 2004. In 2007, after 12 years of support, Polo Ralph Lauren became the AJGA’s second Premier Partner.
AJGA alumni have risen to the top of amateur, collegiate and professional golf. More than 160 former AJGA juniors currently play on the PGA and LPGA Tours and have compiled more than 300 wins. AJGA alumni include Tiger Woods, Phil Mickelson, Jim Furyk, Stewart Cink, Davis Love III, Cristie Kerr, Pat Hurst, Paula Creamer, Brittany Lincicome, Morgan Pressel and Julieta Granada.
For more information, please contact Roseanna Smith (email@example.com) in the AJGA Sponsorship Department at (678) 425-1741.