PGA HOPE National Golf & Wellness Week takes place October 14-18 at the Congressional Country Club

by | Oct 14, 2021 | Golf Training

PGA REACH, the PGA of America’s 501 (c) (3) non-profit foundation, will host PGA HOPE National Golf & Wellness Week 2021 at the Congressional Country Club in Bethesda, Maryland October 14-18.

Through a partnership between PGA REACH and the Congressional Country Club, a group of veterans who have completed their local PGA HOPE (Helping Our Patriots Everywhere) program and have been nominated by their respective PGA sections will participate in the four day program that is offered advanced golf lessons and wellness training. Each participating veteran receives a specially designed golf and wellness toolkit that includes golf training tips and wellness exercises that promote and maintain a healthy and active lifestyle.

PGA HOPE is a national program introducing golf veterans to improve their physical, mental, social and emotional wellbeing. PGA HOPE helps veterans reintegrate into their communities through the social interaction that the game offers. The PGA Professionals-led program is offered free of charge to veterans, and there are currently 165 PGA HOPE chapters across the country that positively impact more than 3,500 veterans annually.

Congressional Country Club’s PGA Director of Athletics Jason Epstein and his PGA members are assisted by Judy Alvarez, PGA / LPGA, the PGA HOPE National Lead Trainer, to deliver the golf lessons for PGA HOPE National Golf & Wellness Week . Wellness and healthy living training is provided by veteran health care executives for the Cohen Veterans Network (CVN) in Stamford, Connecticut. The curriculum covers topics such as public speaking, stress management, mental health and life skills.

“It is rewarding to see these great heroes experience PGA HOPE National Golf & Wellness Week, and then bring the lessons learned back to their respective PGA sections to inspire more veterans to participate in PGA HOPE programs that benefit from PGA- Professionals are directed, “said PGA of America President Jim Richerson. “This is such a momentous program and nothing is more powerful than hearing from military veterans that PGA HOPE saved their lives and made them meaningful again.”

After serving as PGA HOPE Ambassadors 2019, Squad Leaders Casey Dorrell and Will Stockholm will lead and inspire the new veteran team on their way to becoming PGA HOPE Ambassadors.

2021 PGA HOPE ambassador

Casey Dorrell: Delta Squad Leader | PGA HOPE Southwest Ambassador | Class of 2019

Will Stockholm: Sierra Squad Leader | PGA HOPE Ambassador to Northern California | Class of 2019

Sergio Avendano US Air Force | PGA HOPE South Texas

Waco Blakley US Marine Corps & US Air Force | PGA HOPE South Central

Shawn Donald US Marine Corps | PGA HOPE Nebraska

Kevin Farrell US Army | PGA HOPE South Ohio

Jared fears the US Marine Corps | PGA HOPE Minnesota

Thomas Gilmore US Army | PGA HOPE Georgia

Paul Hauck US Army | PGA HOPE North Texas

Harold Hill US Coast Guard (Reserve) | PGA HOPE Carolinas

Jennifer Lewis US Marine Corps | PGA HOPE New England

Rhonda Liddell US Navy | PGA HOPE Northeast NY

Deborah Martinez-Garibay US Army | PGA HOPE southwest

Ralph Mayo Jr. US Marine Corps & US Army (Reserve) | PGA HOPE Connecticut

James Nelson US Army | PGA HOPE Illinois

Jennifer Nunez US Army | PGA HOPE Kentucky

Christina Olivarez US Army | PGA HOPE South Florida

Gerry Ortiz US Army | PGA HOPE Philadelphia

Gabriel Potter US Marine Corps | PGA HOPE mid-Atlantic

John Reissenweber US Army | PGA HOPE Northern California

Jared Forest US Air Force | PGA HOPE New Jersey

Scott Smallter US Navy | PGA HOPE Western New York

World Golf Hall of Fame, 3-time major champion and Vietnam veteran Larry Nelson will be a special guest on site during the program. On the final day, a golf event will be held at the Congressional Country Club where the veterans will play with PGA Professionals, participating dignitaries and corporate partners before returning to their home markets to act as ambassadors for PGA HOPE.

The week also kicks off the 4th PGA National Day of HOPE on Veterans Day, Thursday November 11th. Celebrating PGA National Day of HOPE has two goals: to commemorate our nation’s heroes who protect our freedom; Raise awareness and support for PGA HOPE, the military flagship program for PGA REACH. For information on PGA National Day of HOPE activities and PGA section activations, please visit the OneCause fundraiser page at

“The Congressional Country Club is incredibly proud to host PGA HOPE programs as we see firsthand the immense benefits that this program offers military veterans,” said Greg Laubach, president of the Congressional Country Club. “These veterans are America’s heroes, and everyone has made sacrifices for our great country. PGA HOPE, through community and golf, is a way for Congress to recognize and repay those who have given so much. “

For more information on PGA HOPE National Golf & Wellness Week and PGA National Day of HOPE, or to make a donation, visit