We have written about our days as a caddie and our tremendously good fortune to have been awarded an Evans Scholarship, which funded our passage through college and became the foundation for everything following that we may have accomplished in life. The other day, out of the blue, I thought let's write a post about the founding, development and growth of the caddie scholarship program, supplementing the well known and documented story of Chick Evan's legacy, with original research, if we could turn up anything. Let's honor the program, I thought, and the people who founded it and developed it, and get the story out there.
So I sat down at my laptop, logged on to my account on the www.newspaper.com website and typed in "Evans Scholars." The earliest article that popped was dated March 1934. It was a short feature on the first two Evans Scholars, Harold Fink (who, as I, caddied at Glen View Club in Golf, Illinois) and Harold MacInnes.
Here it is.
YOUTHS GIVEN SCHOLARSHIP BY CHICK EVANS TO RECEIVE THEIR DIPLOMAS FROM NORTHWESTERN----------------
By ROBERT WALTON
EVANSTON, Ill, March 11-- (AP) -- In Northwestern university's graduating class this year are two youths whose college educations resulted in part from their ability on the golf course -- not as players, but as caddies.
|Miami (Okla.) Daily News Record, March 12, 1934|
A one-time caddie who developed into a great star but who never forgot the days when he trudged the fairways carrying a bag of golf sticks, made their college education possible -- Chick Evans, winner of both the national open and the national amateur championships in 1916.
W. G. A. Direction
It was four years ago that Evans provided its scholarships and put them under direction of the Western Golf Association and the university.
Now the first two recipients, Harold Fink and James McGinnis, of Chicago, are winding up their college and will receive diplomas in June. Five other "Evans Scholars" are now in school.
Two scholarships are awarded annually on an elimination basis. Each club in the association is privileged to nominate one of its caddies and the final selection is based upon scholastic ability, character, physical fitness, years of service as a caddy and leadership qualities.On Purple Varsity
Besides receiving tuition and other financial assistance, the recipients are given individual attention by the university and special quarters in the men's dormitories at reduced rates.Of the caddies now attending the university Fink and Tom Saielli, a sophomore, are members of the Northwestern golf team. The latter is a stellar player and much is expected of him during the coming season in the Big Ten.
From that humble beginning, the Evans Scholar program has grown to produce almost 10,000 alumni, all young men and women who needed help to get through college and worked in their tender years, with no guarantee of reward, for the opportunity to get it.
Identifying potential news and information sources is in the first stages of our blogging process. I paged through some more of the thousands of articles that appeared and put my brain on background processing mode, knowing that I would come back to the task days or weeks later, with more sharply defined organizing themes and messaging in mind.
Then I got an email from the Evans Scholar Foundation. I learned that Jim Moore had died the same day that the research and writing impulse popped into my head. For almost half a century Jim Moore was the consistent driving force behind Evans Scholar program. He will be more than missed.
Here, in full, is the obituary written in Golf Week.
And here is the more conventional remembrance put out by the Western Golf Association.
Jim Moore, Western Golf Association, Evans Scholars Program leader, diesA Colorado alum wrote about Jim earlier this summer.
The influence of Moore particularly hits home in Colorado this year with the BMW Championship PGA Tour playoff event being contested at Cherry Hills Country Club Sept. 4-7. All the net proceeds from the BMW Championship go to the Evans Scholars Foundation, with more than $16 million having been contributed since 2007. George Solich is the general chairman for this year's BMW Championship.
"Particularly in Colorado, Jim Moore has seen it all" regarding the Evans Scholar program at CU, Mate noted. "He saw the purchase of the Evans Scholars house (in the late 1960s), saw the program grow and saw all of us go through.
"The Evans Scholars program is named after Chick Evans but it could easily be the Jim Moore Scholarship. The impact he's had ... there are 10,000 alumni and 80 percent probably fell on his watch. Jim is such a humble guy -- he never asked for any credit -- but the things that stand out are his passion for the program and his positivity. He's always been such a positive influence. I don't know a single Evans Scholar that doesn't have a positive memory of Jim Moore. We owe so much to him."
It's little wonder why, in 2008, the same year Moore became the WGA's senior vice president of foundation advancement, a gala was thrown in his honor. More than 800 people feted him in the Grand Ballroom of Chicago's Navy Pier.
Moore has a room in his home with numerous cherished items collected over the years. There's a photo from that Jim Moore Gala at Navy Pier. There's a picture with him, the Solich brothers and Jack Nicklaus (left). There's a photo of him with another CU Evans Scholar alum -- and WGA director -- Bob Webster. But the first item in the room that Moore shows guests is a glass-engraved tribute he received from family members.
His life has clearly been well-lived on more than one front.
As Moore said in 2008, "I'm a fortunate guy in that I have two families that I love very much. If I've had a little impact on some of your lives, I'm happy with that. I'm pleased and proud of that. But I can tell you that each of you has had a greater impact on me."
It seems like everyone has a Jim Moore story -- or at least deeply ingrained memories of Moore and his ever-smiling presence.
I last saw Jim Moore five years ago after not having seen or spoken to him in about 35 years. In Tysons Corner, Virginia, I walked into a room of about fifty people at an alumni gathering. He crossed the crowded room and walked straight over to me, greeted me by name before I had a chance to pen a name tag, and initiated a conversation about my days at Glen View Club and the University of Wisconsin. In Jim Moore's mind, I was not merely one of a crowd of 10,000 alums, but an individual with with a real life and a unique story. If there had been any doubt about my continued support for the program, it would have been obliterated then and there.
Jim Moore was a special man who led a special life who touched countless people. When they have that celebration of life they had better book a spacious venue, for thousands no doubt look forward to recalling, remembering and reminiscing about a life fully and freely led.