Ohio native and golf legend Jack Nicklaus was honored as the 2013 Ambassador of Golf by Northern Ohio Golf Charities Wednesday at Firestone Country Club.
Legends never leave their sport behind.
World Golf Hall of Fame Member Jack Nicklaus is one of those legends. The kind of legend that never lets go of his passion for his game.
An Ohio native, Nicklaus, now 73, notched 18 professional major championships – more than any player in history. But his impact on the sport extends beyond the wins. For that, he was named the 2013 Ambassador of Golf by Northern Ohio Golf Charities.
“Jack Nicklaus is the embodiment of all that the Ambassador of Golf Award represents. On and off the golf course he has represented the game and its ideals with the utmost in class and dignity," PGA Tour Commissioner Tim Finchem said in a press release. "He has excelled in all facets of our sport. As a player, there is perhaps no equal.”
Tiger Woods admits that Nicklaus’ impact on the game is timeless.
“What he has meant to the game of golf and the generations he has influenced, it’s pretty incredible,” Woods said.
Off the course, Nicklaus has been a prolific golf course designer, tournament host and successful business man. And, as a philanthropist, he has leveraged his position as a sports legend, throwing his support behind numerous charities, most notably the Nicklaus Children's Health Care Foundation.
“Golf has given everything to my family and me, so if I am able to give back in any way, great or small, I have tried to do that,” Nicklaus said in a release. “… Golf has not only shown it has the ability to create communities and economic benefit, but the game has the unique ability to teach wonderful life lessons and character-building values, be it honesty, integrity, sportsmanship or discipline.”
It’s fitting, too, that Nicklaus would be honored with Ambassador of Golf award at Firestone Country Club. His career was punctuated by several wins on the course including PGA Tour victories at the 1968 American Golf Classic, the 1975 PGA Championship and the 1976 World Series of Golf.
“This has been a pretty special place to me,” Nicklaus said.