Altvater: Augusta National admits first female members: Condoleezza Rice, Darla MooreWritten by Fred Altvater | | BackNine@toledofreepress.com
Augusta National Golf Club, home of the Masters, has been a men-only private club since its inception in 1932. Just because it has decided to add two female members, don’t expect the famous Green Jacket to suddenly turn pink.
Founding members Bobby Jones and Clifford Roberts envisioned a club steeped in southern hospitality and charm. A club based on the morals and culture of the male-dominated society of the 1930s.
Times have changed. Women have taken over leadership roles in business and government and demand seats in tightly held men-only clubs and organizations across the country.
Women’s activist Martha Burk of the National Council of Women’s Organizations demonstrated against and campaigned several years about the lack of female members in Augusta National.
But until recently, the membership at Augusta National held firm to their right to allow only members of their own choosing and would not bow to public sentiment or outside pressure.
The time has finally come for Augusta National to extend membership to two very deserving ladies.
Augusta National Chairman Billy Payne announced Monday that former Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice and South Carolina financier Darla Moore were invited to join the club.
Before entering government service, Rice was a professor of political science and a provost at Stanford University. She has served on the National Security Council and was national security adviser for President George W. Bush before becoming the secretary of state. She is an avid golf fan, and, since leaving public service, has returned to the faculty at Stanford.
Moore is a graduate of South Carolina University and has endowed the Moore School of Business at SCU. She received her master’s of business administration from George Washington University and made a name for herself by taking bankrupt companies and making them profitable while at Chemical Bank in the 1980s.
She was named president of Rainwater Inc. in 1993 and has been credited with vastly increasing that company’s assets. Fortune Magazine named Moore one of the 50 Most Powerful Women in Business in 1998.
Augusta National admitted two women to its membership. What will we see next, flying pigs or ice water in hell?
For golf tips and video, visit www.toledoohiogolflessons.com. Follow on Twitter: @tolohgolfr.