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March 9, 2022

Tim Finchem

Induction Speech

TIM FINCHEM: Where's Davis going? He's supposed to help with this stuff. Davis Love, as he said in his comments, going way back into the '80s, I don't know how Davis does it because he's currently building four golf courses in four places in the country. He's built a tournament in Hilton Head or Sea Island. He fishes all the time. He skis. And he gets by -- I don't understand how somebody can do it, but he does it. He was a great selection to help me.

I'm just going to say it's been a long night, so I'm going to say a few just thank yous, if that's all right.

I absolutely enjoyed my tenure at the PGA TOUR. There's nothing I would have liked to do better. Working with the caliber of people that populate this building now is just such fun. The people are smart, energetic. They want to do change. They want to get ahead. And it's meant a lot, I think, for Jay to cultivate that kind of group of people that he'll have under his wing as he moves forward.

I want to thank the Hall of Fame members for coming tonight. You are the bedrock for the World Golf Hall of Fame, and to have you at these events is terrific. Some of you I haven't seen in a few years, and it was great to see you tonight.

Of course I'm delighted that Tiger is here. Thinking back about it, Tiger played the U.S. Amateur right over here across the street a long time ago. He played really well, but I didn't pay that much attention to him because I had to go get on an airplane and go to Akron and be there for a PGA TOUR event. And I got up there, and TOUR players usually, when they get done with their rounds, they head for the hills, get ready to get down the road, and get ready for the next tournament. But at this one, I couldn't find any guys around, and I went in the clubhouse, and it was packed, and it was packed because the players had gathered around a television to watch Tiger playing down here in the Amateur.

It sort of taught me a lesson, and I started thinking about how this man can impact huge numbers of people the way he does. And the more I thought about it and then our teams thought about it in terms of measuring, we came up with some very sophisticated ways to measure the certain things that happen. And the thing we wanted to measure was to answer this question: Is Tiger Woods the most noticeable or recognizable person on the planet? And the information came back to us that indeed he was the only living individual on the planet in terms of how many people can be in that position.

It started us thinking even more, and I think, as I look down at Charlie, I think he has the potential, the only person I know that can pass Tiger by in terms of being recognized throughout the globe. So, Charlie, we're going to be watching you on that one.


A few thank yous. I want to thank Deane Beman. Deane Beman, I think a lot of you might not recognize the fact that when Deane came down here and took over the PGA TOUR and started to build it, the net worth of the PGA TOUR was $150,000. You think about that for a minute. And he took it from where it was to great heights in a short period of time before he decided he wanted to leave and started to play some golf.

We talked about Dick Ferris and Peter Ueberroth tonight, but I want to mention one thing that was mentioned earlier in that discussion, and that is that both Dick and Peter, while they were partners in major business activity, including Pebble Beach, they also were fully and completely dedicated to helping the game of golf and helping the PGA TOUR.

The interesting thing about them was that they would play off each other, and when you went to them with a challenge, they would work on it and come back, particularly in Peter's way, of quietly explaining how it could be done better. They were great at that, and having that capability to share with us made our life a lot easier in terms of growing the game of golf.

I also want to thank the Bushes, President Bush 41, President Bush 43. In both cases, when we approached both of those gentlemen to assist us to grow The First Tee and really reach thousands and thousands of young people, they jumped at it, and they've been jumping at it ever since, and they've been very active. Except for 41, of course, passed, but it was an incredible partnership.

And lastly, this is a very personal item, I just want to mention to you how proud I am of my family. We have a great family in our house. I have a son and a daughter-in-law, who lives with my son elsewhere but not that far away, about an hour away. We have three girls who visit us occasionally, and they're here tonight. We have, as of three weeks ago, two baby identical, 100 percent identical girls born to our oldest daughter Kelly. And then we have my wife Holly.

Holly I think of as the MVP of our family day in and day out. She is the smartest person I know. She can run around me like nobody's business. She takes on challenges that I personally don't think she should take on, but takes them on, makes them happen. She raises money incredibly, at an incredible level in the Jacksonville area, and I am just so blessed to have her as my partner.

Holly, in front of all these folks, I want to thank you again for agreeing to marry me. Thank you.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

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