June 1 - 7, 2020

Volunteer of the Year


photo of Kenneth Starr

A selfless member of the courtesy cars committee, Ken Starr represents a group of individuals who support the Memorial outside of the spotlight. The courtesy car committee is made up of approximately 220 volunteers who dedicate their time to insure a critical element of the Tournament runs efficiently and effectively. The committee's efforts begin well before and extend well after the Tournament by supplying a work force to deliver and return the fleet of Tournament vehicles. During Tournament week the committee spends countless hours to insure players, their families and guests, and Tournament officials and guests are transported to their expectations; all of this done without the benefit of viewing the actual golf tournament.

As the 2004 Volunteer of the Year, Ken Starr represents the true definition of the word volunteer. His commitment to the Memorial and Children's Hospital is seen through the effort he has put forth over the past seven years within the courtesy car committee. As a retired truck driver the courtesy car committee fits his strengths perfectly. He has proven over the years to be an invaluable asset and a tremendous leader for the committee.

Ken recently celebrated his 50th wedding anniversary with his wife Kathryn. They are proud parents to four (4) grown daughters and six (6) grandchildren.

Lauretta Godbout, Courtesy Car Chair, relays a great story about Ken:

Ken has always taken on some of the least glamorous jobs that are part of the Courtesy Car area. For instance, Ken volunteers each year to be our late-night guy; picking up players, family members or others that are part of the Memorial Tournament that arrive in Columbus after 1AM. In addition, Ken has also helped us with operations at the airport a few days after the Tournament. He arrives at the airport early on the Tuesday after Tournament to get the Tournament vehicles moved to a central location so that our volunteers can drive them back to the clubhouse - he makes the process so easy for us. This past year, Ken went the extra mile. When we arrived with volunteers to drive our vehicles back, we learned that about 10 of our cars would not start. Ken drove his truck up to each of those vehicles to give it a jump start. All this happened during a steady, cold rain.

About the Award

Volunteers are at the heart of the Memorial Tournament’s dedication to the Memorial Tournament Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU) at Nationwide Children’s Hospital. Every year thousands of volunteers share their passion for helping others by giving their time and talents to the success of the Tournament.

More than thirty Nationwide Children's Hospital Auxilians serve on the the Memorial Tournament Volunteer Committee, benefiting Nationwide Children's Hospital. They are responsible for recruiting, scheduling and managing volunteers throughout the Tournament. This dedicated committee, representing the Memorial Tournament and Nationwide Children's Hospital, works to ensure professionalism from all Tournament volunteers.

For every hour worked by one of the volunteers of the Memorial Tournament Volunteer Committee, a donation is made to the Memorial Tournament NICU. It is in recognition of these selfless men and women that the Tournament annually honors an individual as the Volunteer of the Year.

The program began in 2003 and has since celebrated a recipient of the coveted award each year.

The Memorial Tournament Volunteer Committee kicks off the nomination process each year by requesting that each of the 15 committees recommend potential candidates. From those recommendations the top three candidates are chosen and voted on by a select committee of Tournament Officials. The Volunteer of the year is formally announced each May just prior to the start of Tournament week.

The Memorial's Volunteer of the Year award is supported by: