Local First Tee golfer reflects on golf program

11 August 2020
First Tee Participant Justin Green at the 2019 Pure Insurance First Tee Open at Pebble Beach

Justin Green, First Tee golfer and Norfolk Academy senior, recently participated in a tournament where he represented his beloved First Tee of Hampton Roads.

See what he had to say about his experience with The First Tee, and the values it has brought him.

"Well, I have been involved with The First Tee for twelve years and have reached the Ace Class, which is the highest level of its Life Skills classes. Also, The First Tee is a place where I practice my golf skills at least three times a week. Last month I verbally committed to play D1 golf at Howard University in Washington DC. I’ve practically spent all my summers at The First Tee either as a camper or as a volunteer worker. It is truly a safe haven place for me because I know the people there are
always glad to see me. I have met a lot of my best friends at The First Tee and I’m able to cherish some of my most amazing memories with them, such as making my first hole in one there, as well as being selected to represent the Hampton Roads chapter of The First Tee at an internationally televised golf tournament at Pebble Beach. While at the tournament, I played alongside Masters Champion, Larry Mize.

However, the most impactful part for me being at The First Tee is the opportunity to speak at public events and to give back to my community. When I volunteer each year at the First Tee’s Special Olympics events, I can see how happy the participants are to be playing golf. Golf is a game that gives me so much joy, and I love to share that passion with others. The First Tee finds a way to spread golf to people that would have never thought about playing the sport. This past year, my Ace class met kids from orphanages to introduce them to the game of golf. The smiles across the room were so beautiful when they had a chance to swing a golf club. At the end of the program, I asked the kids to raise their hands if they wanted to start playing golf now. All 30 of the kids’ hands were raised! Seeing those kids raise their hands with smiles was truly my favorite part. I just love being part of an organization that has such a positive impact on young people."