APGA Champion Willie Mack III Earns Sponsor Exemption at World Wide Technology Championship at Mayakoba
Talent is often evenly distributed amongst communities. Opportunity, however, is not.
This discrepancy for those that have talent, but do not always get the opportunity to utilize it is at the core of our goal of building, retaining and growing a highly competent, competitive and diverse pipeline of future leaders.
Consider Willie Mack III, a 33-year-old professional golfer who has spent a decade grinding it out to make it onto golf's biggest stage -- the PGA TOUR. Mack has made a living on the Advocates Professional Golf Association (APGA), a tour created to help minorities and other underrepresented golfers gain traction in the highly competitive world of golf.
His incredible story of perseverance -- rising amateur, hand-me down clubs, homelessness and even a near-death experience -- is well documented. But his story is also just beginning to take shape as his grit and determination is starting to pay off.
Mack caught a break in early 2021 when he received a sponsor exemption -- actually, he replaced a prior exemption that had to drop out due to COVID-19 -- to play in the Farmers Insurance Open. This was his first PGA TOUR appearance. He played well enough to make the cut in two more PGA TOUR events (the Rocket Mortgage Classic and the John Deere Classic). And, in August, he won the Mastercard APGA Tour Championship.
Mack told Golf Channel after his APGA victory he's been able to play better with the opportunities that have come along.
World Wide Technology is excited to be giving Mack an opportunity to continue his inspiring story by giving him a sponsorship exemption to the upcoming World Wide Technology Championship at Mayakoba, a PGA TOUR event with 500 FedExCup points awarded to the champion.
"I'm super grateful (for the exemption) and just excited to get there," he said. "I've had a couple of starts this year where things went well so hopefully I can start this new season off a bit just how I ended it last year."
People do great things when they are able to pursue their passion, but opportunity can sometimes stand in the way. When we invest in others, such as Mack, we enable them to deliver tangible outcomes that better themselves and their communities.
Our hope is for Mack to continue his stretch of success at Mayakoba and use it as a launchpad to further a career that can inspire others to pursue similar opportunities.
"When I played in the Rocket Mortgage Classic earlier this year there were a lot of people that came out and supported me, and that was nice to see," he said. "Just being able to try and do my role and play well and maybe get a few more people into the game of golf that wouldn't normally have the chance to play. That's how I got started -- seeing Tiger Woods on TV and what not."
Diversity has been a critical enabler of WWT's success since the company was founded more than 30 years ago, and it is key to our ability in making a positive difference in the world -- for our people, the communities in which we serve, our customers and partners.
By supporting the APGA as title sponsor of its Player Development Program and providing Mack a sponsor exemption, we're investing in underrepresented communities and giving them an opportunity to make a difference in their lives and others.
We're incredibly proud to give Mack the opportunity to continue his journey. And, on behalf of all of WWT, go get 'em!