Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

Farley Well-Suited to Be First Tee Leader; Club Pro Enthusiastic about Role with the Merged Facilities

Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

Farley Well-Suited to Be First Tee Leader; Club Pro Enthusiastic about Role with the Merged Facilities

Article excerpt

Byline: Garry Smits

Boots Farley says he's long had a calling to promote the game he loves by helping children learn golf's rules, etiquette, values and skills.

The newest chapter in his life could be the last, professionally, at the age of 58. But the Jacksonville native and club professional feels as enthusiastic as one of his junior golfers getting the hang of the game days away from assuming the position of executive director of the newly formed First Tee of North Florida - a merger of the First Tee facilities in Jacksonville and St. Augustine.

"This is the pinnacle to my career," said Farley, a Wolfson graduate who also has worked as a club pro and teacher at Deerwood, Hidden Hills, the Ravines and the Jacksonville Beach Golf Course. "It's the end of the path I chose so many years ago. I've always been junior-golf oriented since I got into the business, and this is the culmination of everything I've worked for."

"In expanding our combined First Tee chapter, we needed to reach out to pros and general managers of potential affiliates," said Chip Trefry, president and chairman of the First Tee of North Florida. "We could not have found a better guy than Boots. He knows everybody. Boots is the perfect guy to bring the two First Tee staffs together."

The First Tee is the World Golf Foundation initiative launched in 1997 to make golf more affordable and accessible to children and youth. But hand-in-hand with golf instruction and competition are instilling the First Tee's Core Values - honesty, integrity, sportsmanship, respect, confidence, responsibility, perseverance, courtesy and judgment.

"As a PGA professional all my life, I know the values of what golf instills in people," Farley said. "The core values of the First Tee are what made the job attractive to me. Those values and everything they offer can carry you through everything. It's not about golf. It's about life. Golf is just the vehicle."

Farley's credentials in working with junior golf are impressive. …

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