Mike started out as one of my private golf students and today I am honored to call him friend. He is a good player but like most he allows the bad shot to take over too much mental space which leads to more poor shots. What impresses me about Mike is his desire to keep practicing and playing even as he deals with debilitating pain which is probably why we get a long so well.
When he asked about being a volunteer, I was not surprised. People see that I have a lot of kids and they always ask but Mike was the first to follow through by completing all of the necessary background checks and training that First Tee requires. He really enjoys watching the kids and is their biggest cheerleader. When I was informed that he was awarded Volunteer of the Year for 2022 and that they wanted him to attend a special event, I laughed. There was no way that Mike was going to a special event, if he was getting an award it would need to be in front of his players.
It took two tries to present it since his back was not cooperating but we did it. He was completely unaware of what was happening at the time. Congratulations Mike!!!
Q: How does it feel to receive this award?
A: It is an honor to receive an award for GIVING.
Q: How did you get started playing golf?
A: Curiosity, my friend started to play and I went along with him.
Q: What prompted you to start volunteering?
A: I had been taking lessons with Glen for several weeks and he mentioned that he also taught kids as part of the First Tee program, so I asked if he needed any help.
Q: What do you enjoy the most about volunteering?
A: Giving back is the greatest lesson, no matter how or when I have found it to be the greatest reward that I have experienced in my life.
Q: When you are not playing golf what do you like to do?
A: Watch and play sports, spend time with family.
Q: Who is your favorite golfer and why?
A: Bernard Langer, his dedication to be the best.
Q: Most people who are experiencing the kind of pain that you are, would just stop volunteering until they are well. Why is it important for you to keep your commitment no matter what?
A: I was taught by my father a long time ago, if you make a commitment you keep it no matter what. As the classes went on I observed that this was much more than teaching golf, Glen had a group of people who cared about teaching respect, family, and integrity etc. (Glen, Danni, Mayda, Mateo, Zack, Stan, Reva) It has truly been a privilege to be involved with Glen and his crew, it is not often you get to spend time with such good people.