PGA/LPGA Professional Renee Powell of East Canton, Ohio, spent a busy weekend celebrating Black History Month and marking the 65th anniversary year of her family-owned Clearview Golf Club. Powell was a guest on ABC's "Good Morning America," Feb. 11, and was honored on the court of the New Jersey Nets, Feb. 12, during an NBA game with the New York Knicks.
Powell represented her late father, William Powell, the recipient of the 2009 PGA Distinguished Service Award and pioneer in golf diversity, who was invited to appear at a game by the New Jersey Nets before his death on Dec. 31, 2009. The Nets sponsor a series, "Ordinary People Doing Extraordinary Things," during home games throughout February.
BLACK HISTORY MONTH
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Powell built Clearview Golf Club in 1946, making him the only African-American to build, own, and operate a golf course in the United States. Clearview is a member of the National Register of Historic Places, and one of only two Ohio golf courses earning that designation.
"I wish that my father would have been with me to enjoy the attention and the tribute," said Renee Powell, the 2003 PGA First Lady of Golf. "I had the feeling that he was directing things from a higher position."
According to New Jersey Nets Community Relations Assistant Mike Wisniewski, the goal of the program is to raise awareness of individuals who have had a positive impact in the African-American culture, in either the past or the present.
"We saw William Powell's story and we thought it was wonderful," said Wisniewski. "Not many people from this area were aware of what he had done so we wanted to put a spotlight on his accomplishments."
"I was amazed that a team that is not even in our state is aware of my father's significant contributions to the country and recognized him in this manner," said Powell. "My dad would have been very humbled by the honor.
"As for ABC, Robin Roberts is a great fan of Mr. P.'s, and she did a story on him when he received the PGA of America Distinguished Service Award in 2009. As this is the 65th anniversary of Clearview, Robin thought it would be a wonderful time to do an update on Clearview, to talk about its history and the legacy of my dad."
Powell said that she is embarking on a national fund-raising capital campaign to ensure the heritage of William Powell and the legacy of education and research at Clearview.
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