“Bermuda Black Golf Summit & Championship”


The “Bermuda Black Golf Summit & Championship” will be held in Bermuda from November 2nd to 7th, the Bermuda Tourism Authority [BTA] announced today.

“This inaugural event is as much about the business of golf as it is about playing the game itself. And it was created by brains right here in Bermuda,” BTA Interim CEO Glenn Jones said.

Mr Jones, BTA’s Hazel Clarke and golf pro Kim Swan:

Mr Jones added, “The objective is simple: this event aims, on a global scale, to topple barriers and create pathways to diversity in the sport of golf. We’re looking to attract golf industry thought leaders, senior executives from top sporting brands and everyday people who love golf.

“Our analysis shows that the prominence of Black Lives Matter and the explosion of golf’s popularity recently make this exactly the right time for Bermuda to lead with the introduction of the Black Golf Summit and Championship.”

BTA Director of Sports Business Development Hazel Clark said, “The Summit will be followed by the Black Golf Championship which will provide participants with the opportunity to compete in a unique and exciting format, represent their communities, earn bragging rights and seize the first-ever championship trophy.

“Our year-one goal is 24 foursomes arriving in Bermuda. We’ll also build in time for these visitors to enjoy the island’s history, culture and food.

“A great benefit of this event is that it satisfies more than one important National Tourism Plan goal. The first is golf. The other is Black travel. It’s a reminder that Black consumers have diverse travel desires and Bermuda has many ways to engage with them.”

BTA Interim CEO Glenn Jones’ remarks:

The Bermuda Tourism Authority is proud to be the island’s advocate for golf not because we want the destination to compete in this game, but because we know the destination can win. Bermuda can win at golf. And lead.

So what is our game plan for victory? Allow me to walk you through:

  • In 2018, the National Tourism Plan guides us to focus on sports groups and we hand that mandate to our brilliant Director of Sports Business Development to take us forward;
  • This resulted in the BTA sports strategy which puts golf right in the bullseye of sports most likely to drive visitor arrivals and visitor spending;
  • Next the BTA woos the PGA TOUR, bringing the Bermuda Championship here to Port Royal Golf Course in 2019… a five-year deal for a pinnacle golf event at our gem of a public golf course
  • The BTA sports team then went out and got an American Junior Golf Association event too. COVID-19 interrupted that event, but we are not deterred, that event will happen soon.

Our victory plan is resilient. And it’s still evolving. This much is clear: whenever an organization has a targeted, well thought out plan in a specific area, it’s poised to do great things.

Today, during Black History Month in the United States, I’m pleased to announce the Bermuda Tourism Authority will bring yet another golf event to Bermuda this calendar year. It is the Bermuda Black Golf Summit & Championship, November 2nd to 7th.

This inaugural event is as much about the business of golf as it is about playing the game itself. And it was created by brains right here in Bermuda.

The objective is simple: this event aims, on a global scale, to topple barriers and create pathways to diversity in the sport of golf. We’re looking to attract golf industry thought leaders, senior executives from top sporting brands and everyday people who love golf.

Our analysis shows that the prominence of Black Lives Matter and the explosion of golf’s popularity recently make this exactly the right time for Bermuda to lead… with the introduction of the Black Golf Summit and Championship.

It’s really the combination of two events:

  • 1. Black Golf Club Presidents’ Summit
  • 2. And the Bermuda Black Golf Clubs Championship

Both will happen here in Bermuda. And strategically, this event will take place immediately after the Bermuda Championship. This creates a scenario where golf thought leaders can arrive early for the PGA TOUR event… and golf fans and players here for the championship will be encouraged to stay late to help us topple racial barriers in the sport of golf.

Whether it’s a golf vacation… a pinnacle golf event like the Bermuda Championship… or a world class junior golf event… Bermuda is already a fierce competitor in this sport. She has the assets—more golf courses per square mile than anyplace else. She has the weather—you can play here year-round. And her people have the passion—this country certainly loves the game of golf.

And now we have a golf thought leadership event to be proud of… homegrown. It is the Bermuda Black Golf Summit and Championship coming this November.

The goal is to win more golf business for Bermuda. And we’re totally excited about it. We can’t wait.

I offer my congratulations to our team leader on sports, Hazel Clark. Her squad has done a fantastic job with this event and with golf generally. I invite her to say a few words.

BTA Director of Sports Business Development Hazel Clark’s remarks:

Thank you Glenn and thank you for your leadership and support!

I want to begin by thanking the members of our newly formed Black Sports Stakeholders Committee, all respected leaders in our community, who have passionately contributed to the development and advancement of sports locally in a myriad of ways. A major driver for the win Glenn just talked about, is this group of trusted partners.

The BTA would also like to acknowledge our delivery partners PGA Magazine and Ellison Consulting who will lend their expertise and contacts to ensure the Black Golf Summit and Championship is a success for many years to come. We believe it can be a signature tourism event as it grows year-to-year.

The event program will commence with the first-ever annual Black Golf Summit, conceptualized around diversity-driven dialogue. Diversity in sport is something I advocated for during my own athletic career and I’m proud to make it part of business development at the Bermuda Tourism Authority.

The Summit will be followed by the Black Golf Championship which will provide participants with the opportunity to compete in a unique and exciting format, represent their communities, earn bragging rights and seize the first-ever championship trophy. Our year-one goal is 24 foursomes arriving in Bermuda. We’ll also build in time for these visitors to enjoy the island’s history, culture and food.

A great benefit of this event is that it satisfies more than one important National Tourism Plan goal. The first is golf. The other is Black travel. It’s a reminder that Black consumers have diverse travel desires and Bermuda has many ways to engage with them.

In its entirety this event will underscore Bermuda’s position as an influential global leader on the promotion of diversity and inclusion and help establish a critical framework that can create unprecedented worldwide access and opportunities in Golf. Now more than ever, racial disparity and inequality are at the forefront of global consciousness and Bermuda has proven it is prepared to unite, to topple barriers and lead the fight against racism.

On this point, this is so much more than a summit and a round of golf. This new venture will establish and support community programs and initiatives here in Bermuda. It will create pathways for local children to gain accessibility to the sport of Golf and also find careers in the sport. And we’ll use this opportunity to celebrate Bermuda’s Black golf legacy… by sharing the inspirational journeys of the pioneers that paved the way like golfer Louis “Kid” Corbin who pushed through adversity to lead the charge against segregation in Golf. There is no doubt our beloved Bermudian heroes will play an integral role in our storytelling around this event.

To get this right, we’ll be looking for sponsors across our community—and around the world. We know there are companies and foundations with values that match the ambitions of the Black Golf Summit & Championship. It will take a substantial fundraising effort to meet this bold mission. We know the work will be worthwhile because the benefits are things worth believing in: unity, youth development, innovation and equality. We look forward to welcoming, you all back this fall for this new Bermuda Tourism Authority event.

Nelson Mandela once said, “Sport has the power to change the world, It has the power to unite the world in a way that little else does. It is time for us to proudly take a swing at the barriers that have previously limited us and embrace the power of diversity. We have shown our strength when we stand united and hope you will be motivated to lend your resources and efforts to this to truly make a difference and strive for a culture of equality for our community and communities everywhere.”

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