Ribbon cutting ceremony pictured are: Robert Williams USGA, Mario Chiodo, Ty Votaw PGA TOUR, Jack Peter Chief Operating Officer of The World Golf Hall of Fame & Museum, Renee Powell, First Ohio Golf Hall of Fame and First Lady of Golf Award by The PGA of America 2003. Cutting the ribbon is Dr. Charlie Sifford, Dr. Johnny A. Gaffney Jacksonville Florida City Council Member, Wendell Haskin PGA, Steve Mona CEO of the World Golf Foundation, Pete McDaniel lead writer for the project, and James Lacey Dent on the African American professional golf stars
Sculptor Mario Chiodo of Chioda Art Development out of Napa Valley, Ca., brought his vision of African American Golf pioneers that rises toward the ceiling and serves as a spectacular centerpiece for the exhibit. Tiger Woods is one step from the top of the bronze sculpture.
Story and photos by Frank Powell
The exhibit opened one day before a major milestone, the 50th Anniversary of Pete Brown’s historic win across the Red River in a little Oklahoma border town called Burneyville that nobody had ever heard of.
The Memorabilia highlights the long, rich history of African Americans in golf starting with pioneers like John Shippen in the late 1800s to Dr. Charlie Sifford, who broke golf’s color barrier as the first official TOUR pro and became the first African American inducted into the World Golf Hall of Fame remains the only Black in the WGHOF. And only Tiger Woods, who is of African American descent, is a shoo-in to join him. However, that doesn’t diminish the importance of the exhibit, for it not only acknowledges, but honors the contributions of myriad of Blacks to the development of the game in this country.