FRANKLIN, Tenn. (July 13, 2023) – The Tennessee Golf Foundation is pleased to announce that Andy Mears has been hired as the new Regional Director for West Tennessee. He will begin work in this role on August 1, 2023.
Mears joins the Tennessee Golf Foundation staff after seven years with the First Tee, first in Greater Chicago and then in Sarasota, Florida. Prior to that, he served as the Director of Golf Operations for the Freedom Golf Association, an organization devoted to bringing golf and its life-enhancing benefits to those facing unique challenges tied to physical disabilities and other hurdles.
Mears is a 35-year member of the PGA of America and has served on numerous PGA boards and committees at both the Section and Chapter levels. He was recently named the 2023 North Florida PGA Youth Development Award winner.
“We are extremely excited to have Andy Mears join our team at the Tennessee Golf Foundation as our Regional Director for West Tennessee,” said Whit Turnbow, president of the Tennessee Golf Foundation. “Andy brings a wealth of experience and energy to the region as part of our ongoing effort to make a positive impact on the lives of kids and families through the game of golf.”
“We’re confident the communities in West Tennessee will benefit from Andy’s passion to share the game and be of service to both current and future generations of golfers.”
As the TGF Regional Director in West Tennessee, Mears will be charged with driving the Tennessee Golf Foundation’s mission of promoting the game and its life-enhancing values with an emphasis on serving youth, veterans and the disadvantaged through the western portion of the state.
Mears will work closely with the TGF’s leadership team to deliver high quality programs to the West Tennessee golf community, such as First Tee, the Sneds Tour junior golf events and the Tennessee Middle School Golf Association program. He will also work with the TGF’s Allied Golf Associations to assist with the delivery and growth of highly impactful programs such as PGA HOPE for military veterans, PGA Junior League, PGA Drive, Chip and Putt, as well as assisting with Tennessee’s Special Olympics golf programs and Tennessee Golf Association events.
“I am honored and excited to be named Tennessee Golf Foundation Regional Director for West Tennessee,” Mears said. “Creating youth development programs for young people through the game of golf and growing opportunities for everyone to enjoy the game is what I love to do. I will bring my enthusiasm, commitment, and experience to the West Tennessee region to continue its great golf and community service tradition.”
Originally from the Village of Paw Paw in Michigan, Mears attended Ferris State University, where he studied Professional Golf Management. He has since compiled a long and distinguished career in playerdevelopment, non-profit organization management, golf facility operations, as well as sales management and training.
Mears has four grown children and one grandchild. He and his fiancée, Denise, plan to relocate to theMemphis area in early August and are looking forward to becoming part of the Tennessee golf community, as well as being closer to family.
ABOUT FIRST TEE: First Tee (www.firsttee.org) is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit youth development organizationthat is supported by the PGA TOUR. Its mission is to impact the lives of young people by providing educational programs that build character and instill life-enhancing values through the game of golf. In 2022, First Tee celebrated its 25th anniversary and reaching millions of young people through its network of 150 chapters, 10,000 schools and 1,700 youth centers. Headquartered in Ponte Vedra Beach, Florida, USA, programs are delivered in all 50 United States and select international locations. President George W. Bush serves as Honorary Chair.
ABOUT THE TENNESSEE GOLF FOUNDATION: The TGF operates out of Golf House Tennessee, located in Franklin, and is home to the state’s governing bodies of golf – the Tennessee Golf Association, the Tennessee Section PGA and TGF Junior Golf. Golf House Tennessee also features The Little Course at Conner Lane – a state-of-the-art learning center with a nine-hole, par-three course and driving range with programming for all ages and skill levels. The TGF focuses on initiatives for juniors, veterans and the disadvantaged, with such offerings as the Sneds Tour, the Tennessee PGA Junior Golf Academy, Special Olympics Golf, PGA HOPE, The First Tee, Tennessee Middle School Golf and the Scott Stallings Kids Play Free Program.