Viva Las Vegas! Viva The Rite Aid Foundation!
Annual Rite Aid Charity Golf Classic Raises Millions For Worthy Causes
It was an exciting few days in Las Vegas for those who attended The Rite Aid Foundation Charity Golf Classic. Bright lights, great entertainment and perfect weather on five picturesque golf courses were the backdrop for an event that brings Rite Aid’s supplier community together in support of The Rite Aid Foundation.
More than 230 supplier partners participated in the event in early April—raising nearly $2.3 million dollars to support the charitable giving of The Foundation. Since its inception in 2001, more than $15.5 million has been awarded through the annual Golf Classic to improve the lives of children and adults in the communities Rite Aid serves. Last year, The Foundation funded 266 programs in 171 cities across 30 states and the District of Columbia, totaling more than $1.9 Million.
Chairman, President and CEO John Standley thanked the suppliers for their commitment to The Foundation. “Without each and every one of you, The Rite Aid Foundation simply would not be able to make the difference it does in the communities we serve. As with running and growing our business, your partnership is key.”
“This is the 12th year for The Rite Aid Foundation Charity Golf Classic and it just gets stronger and stronger. The Foundation provides a great opportunity for us to reach out in our communities and help people who are really in need,” said newly appointed Foundation President Ken Martindale.
For Tim Phillips, sales director for Unilever, the annual tournament is closely aligned with his company’s values. “One of our core values at Unilever is to really try to help out the communities we serve, much like Rite Aid does, so it’s a real synergy between our two strategies. It’s a pleasure for us to be an Eagle sponsor for this event and we look forward to it every year.”
One of this year’s highlights was the chance to meet celebrity golfers Doug Flutie, whose professional football career spanned 19 years, and former NFL linebacker Jack Ham, whose illustrious career with the Pittsburgh Steelers in the 1970s led to his induction into the Pro Football Hall of Fame in 1988. To honor the outstanding achievements of each, a $5000 donation from The Foundation was made to The Doug Flutie, Jr. Foundation for Autism and DebRA of America, a nationwide charitable organization that focuses primarily on kids struggling to cope with a rare genetic skin disorder.
Flutie said he has seen first-hand the difference that charitable organizations can make in the lives of children, including his own son who suffers with autism. “I love being involved with businesses that give back to their communities. There is just so much need for charitable support. We sponsored a water sport camp for children with autism. I saw my son do things that I never thought he could do and right away I could see the difference that a charity organization can make. It just makes you want to do more.”
“Giving back to the communities is a win-win. There are so many kids out there who need help and support, and this is a great way for Rite Aid to help,” said Ham.
Flutie and Ham weren’t the only celebrities on the links during the tournament, after Nate Hart, co-president of Echo Bridge Home Entertainment, sunk a 165-foot hole-in-one on the 12th hole at the Cascata course to win $50,000 from The Rite Aid Foundation. This achievement has only been recorded twice before in the history of the tournament. Supplier partners not lucky enough to score a hole-in-one still had the chance to score one of many tournament and raffle prizes given away during the event.
Although not every supplier won a prize, each left with something even better—a feeling of pride in supporting the charitable organizations that receive funds granted through The Foundation. “We feel very good about everything that The Rite Aid Foundation is doing, so much so that we stepped up to become an Eagle sponsor for the first time this year,” said John Parke, E&J Gallo Winery managing director, west. “This is an exceptional event.”Anheuser Busch is another proud Eagle sponsor of the tournament. Chris Williams, vice president of national retail sales for Anheuser Busch, said, “The Rite Aid Foundation demonstrates a partnership with the community. It demonstrates branding for Rite Aid, so it brings the relevance of the store back to the community. For us as a supplier partner, it just shows the different ways we can connect, not just with retailers, but with the shoppers and beyond to the community.”