Ashlee was invited because of her commitment to the ideals of The First Tee® and her outstanding academic and community service achievements. Ashlee is a senior at The Neighborhood Academy and will be attending Hood College or Towson State University in the fall.
Ashlee and her mother Juanita were flown to Washington by The First Tee®’s home office and treated to a tour of our nation’s capitol that included a private tour of the Capital Building and time at several museums. All expenses were paid for the pair by the home office of The First Tee® and were accompanied on the trip by TFTP Board President John Douglas and TFT’s Senior Coordinator for Scholastic Opportunities Trish Lange. Also along as honored guests were The First Tee of Augusta Georgia participant Jeffrey Tran and his father Ray.
At the dinner the night before the breakfast, John was far more nervous than Ashlee. According to John, “Ashlee’s experience at The Neighborhood Academy, a faith-based independent college preparatory school for Pittsburgh’s financially disadvantaged youth, excelling in her studies, as a sportswoman and a volunteer prepared her wonderfully for this experience.”
Joining Ashlee from the world of golf were PGA Tour Commissioner Tim Finchem, USGA Executive Director David Fay, CEO of The First Tee Joe Louis Barrow and three-time US Open Champion and member of the World Golf Hall of Fame, Hale Irwin.
During the breakfast, Ashlee spoke eloquently about the challenges she has faced in her life and how participation in The First Tee, with its nine core values, has enabled her to do well in school and set and achieve long and short term goals. She informed the audience that one of her long-term goals is to pursue a career in forensic science.
This was an extraordinary opportunity for Ashlee and an example of the life-changing events available through The First Tee® programs. We congratulate Ashlee and take pride in her accomplishments knowing full well that we provide the environment for our participants to thrive, but it is Ashlee’s personal drive and determination that has led her to the heights she has achieved. We wish her well and know that she will always be part of The First Tee® of Pittsburgh’s family.