WAILEA - The biggest draw in women's golf for the past decade, Michelle Wie, has committed to support the season-ending Hawaii State Junior Golf Association (HSJGA) Tournament of Champions at Wailea Golf Club on Dec. 15-16.
The contest is the most prestigious junior golf event in Wie's native State of Hawaii.
In a record-setting 2002 season, Wie won the 15- to 18-year-old division as a 12-year-old member of the HSJGA, capturing national attention and launching an international career.
“This is my chance to give back to the organization and help the young golfers in Hawaii grow in this game that’s given me so much,” Michelle Wie said.
Wie will assume the title sponsorship of the event and utilize her considerable presence to energize fundraising efforts for the HSJGA.
She will also donate time and collectibles, plus match the first $10,000 in donations in an online fundraising campaign.
Her efforts will ensure Hawaii's junior golfers continue to experience a "first-class" competition featuring tournament winners from the 2012 schedule.
"The HSJGA and I go way back to when I was just a kid who loved to hit the ball a long way," Wie said.
"They gave me the opportunity to develop my game and competitive drive in an open, nurturing environment. They really made it possible for me to take my game to the next level."
The HSJGA Tournament of Champions has been a highlight on the schedule since its founding in 1998. The 2012 Michelle Wie HSJGA Tournament of Champions edition anticipates more than 75 entries, including 50 winners of 23 HSJGA tournaments during the calendar year.
Other notable past champions include Alex Ching, Stephanie Kono, Lorens Chan, Cassy Isagawa, Tadd Fujikawa and Miki Ueoka.
"I really don't think Michelle realizes the enormity of her positive impact on junior golf, not only in Hawaii but across the United States and the world for that matter," said Mary Bea Porter-King, HSJGA president.
"The HSJGA is so proud of the way she has started her career on the LPGA Tour while being a full-time student at Stanford. We are so happy to have her back home to ignite more interest in junior golf in Hawaii and help the HSJGA 'Develop Tomorrow's Leader's One Swing at a Time.' "
Wie is the most recognizable alumnus in the history of the HSJGA. In turn, the association gave Wie a grounding in fundamentals that grew during her meteoric rise.
"I am so proud of Michelle in reaching out to the HSJGA to build a partnership. She is truly leading by example by giving back," said Porter-King.
Founded in 1998, the HSJGA has offered the opportunity for thousands of Hawaii juniors to experience the benefits found in the game of golf through tournaments, team competitions and college workshops.
With Wie's support, the future of the HSJGA continues its forward progress.
The 2013 schedule anticipates even more junior golfers competing in over 25 events in Hawaii.
Along with talented professional stars like Wie, the HSJGA has counted doctors, lawyers, musicians, accountants, business owners and teachers among its alumni.
The skills young golfers develop in the program have helped scores of Hawaii juniors earn scholarships from college programs across the nation.