“Do the next right thing… Be the example.”
To introduce The I AM a Golfer Foundation one must appreciate that the future is sometimes about embracing history. Golf has such a rich history of magnificent courses, and Cedar Crest Golf Club, home to The I AM a Golfer Foundation is one of those venues.
Opening in 1919 Cedar Crest Golf Club (then Cedar Crest Country Club) was designed by renowned course architect A.W. Tillinghast. Cedar Crest hosted the 1926 Dallas Open, and in 1927 Walter Hagan won the PGA Championship that was contested at the South Dallas venue.. In 1946 Cedar Crest Golf Course became a public facility owned by the City of Dallas and continued hosting prestigious events such as the 1954 USGA Public Links Championship, and the 1954 NGA National Negro Open, with Dr. Charlie Sifford claiming the title. Venues like Cedar Crest Golf Club are true landmarks in the history of golf in the United States.
Ira Malayo is the General Manager and Director of Golf at Cedar Crest Golf Club. Ira was introduced to the game as a youth at the very club he manages. Malayo grew up around the game, making golf a career and becoming a PGA Professional in 2007. He founded The I Am a Golfer foundation in 2018 to bring underserved youth to the game, and to preserve and enhance Cedar Crest Golf Club. The creation of a board for the foundation reunited Ira with Chuck Walker who had been a driving force in the First Tee of Greater Dallas. Walker became the Executive Director of the foundation, and the original programs put on at Cedar Crest Golf Club caught the interest of influential community supporters. These individuals recognized that their resources could raise the impact The I AM a Golfer Foundation could achieve by becoming a catalyst for community renewal and preservation at Cedar Crest Golf Club. . Through its Junior Golf Academy, paid internship program for high school and college students, and subsequent scholarship program, by 2021 the I AM a Golfer Foundation had reached 145 youth..
A year-long campaign launched in 2021 helped to raise funds to create a “Legends Plaza” at the entryway of Cedar Crest Golf Course. This unique area will feature statues of Walter Hagen and Dr. Charlie Sifford. Funds from the campaign will also assist with redeveloping the practice area. These facility enhancements, a public/private partnership with the City of Dallas and The I AM a Golfer Foundation, have awakened a resurgence to the greenspace that is Cedar Crest Golf Club, and the surrounding community. Proceeds from the Grassroots Grant were used to expand the programs for The I Am a Golfer Foundation that will allow it to serve 400 youth in 2023. The ripple effects in and around Cedar Crest Golf Club are changing the community and every youth that become a part of The I Am a Golfer Foundation. To find out how you can be a part of the future please go to www.iamagolfer.com