Canadian golf icon and philanthropist to help foster donor relationships and support the advancement of First Tee programming for children and families across Canada
TORONTO, February 21, 2023 – Golf Canada and the Golf Canada Foundation are pleased to announce that Canadian Golf Hall of Famer and dedicated philanthropist Mike Weir has been named the first official First Tee – Canada ambassador.
As an ambassador for First Tee – Canada, Weir will support the program through attendance at fundraising events, helping to foster donor relationships, and broadening the reach of First Tee – Canada’s positive impact on children and families.
Born and raised in Bright’s Grove, Ont., the eight-time PGA TOUR winner and 2003 Masters champion has been a philanthropic supporter of Canadian youth for nearly 20 years through the charitable work of the Mike Weir Foundation.
First Tee – Canada provides affordable access to golf for youth across the country, striving to diversify and grow the game of golf to reflect the strengths of Canada’s multiculturalism more closely. Inclusive programming is delivered at golf courses, schools, and community centres introducing golf and providing life-enhancing experiences through sport to children.
“I am honoured to take on the role of First Tee – Canada ambassador,” said Weir. “Historically, golf has not been the most accessible sport for families to get involved with, and I am proud to be part of a program that is working with donors and community leaders to break down those barriers. My passion for golf and supporting children’s development is well aligned with the First Tee – Canada’s mission and I am excited to contribute wherever I can.”
“We are extremely proud to welcome Mike Weir as a First Tee – Canada ambassador,” said Golf Canada Chief Sport Officer Kevin Blue. “Mike has meant so much to Canadian golf and his altruism and charitable experience will help generate meaningful awareness of First Tee across the Canadian philanthropic community. We highly anticipate Mike’s ambassadorship adding to the continued advancement of the program, and its ability to positively impact Canadian youth.”
Weir, who took up the game at Huron Oaks near Sarnia, Ont. was recently named International Team Captain of the 2024 Presidents Cup at Royal Montreal Golf Club. As a philanthropist, the Mike Weir Foundation has raised over $8,000,000 for Canadian children’s charities since 2004.
“I have tried to use my platform for good and being a First Tee – Canada ambassador is an extension of that commitment,” added Weir. “I hope that my involvement can inspire supporters looking to introduce more children and families to the sport I love, especially those who may have otherwise not had the opportunity. I want to welcome youth to experience the game and develop important life skills they can carry forward through life off the course.”
Launched in 2020 with the generous support of the Golf Canada Foundation and its network of donors, First Tee – Canada has operating chapters in Ontario, British Columbia, Quebec, the Atlantic region, and a newly launched Prairies region. With programming in schools, at community centres, and at golf courses, Golf Canada’s goal is to welcome 100,000 First Tee – Canada participants by 2024.