June 1 - 7, 2020

Volunteer of the Year


photo of Ken Porter

Ken moved to the Columbus area from Kentucky eight years ago. He is a big golf fan and within two years of the move began signing up for the Memorial Tournament. He has been a Courtesy Car volunteer all six years and in 2014 Ken worked 14 shifts for 98 plus hours and was one of our special volunteers at the zoo for Volunteer Night. I say 98 hours plus because on many occasions, Ken has stayed over his shifts waiting for that delayed airplane or running someone to their hotel after the Courtesy Cars "posted hours". Since 2012 Ken has volunteered over 200 hours.

Like many of our volunteers, Ken signed up for Courtesy Cars because he thought meeting the pros would be fun. He fondly remembers a late night airport pickup that he unselfishly stayed over for. Ken had no idea that the pro he was waiting for was from the same area of Kentucky as he was and they had great conversation on their way to the hotel. A nice welcome for this young, new pro on his initial visit to The Memorial Tournament and Columbus, OH.

As the years have progressed, Ken has given up his driving role to assume the Captain work behind the Courtesy Car desk. He does a great job making sure all our VIP's get to where they need to go and keeps our volunteers busy. In addition, he helps us the entire two week period taking shifts for car check-in on the front end and the back end of the Tournament.
Ken will tell you the highlight of his past 6 years was when his grand-daughter "Annika" got to meet her namesake Annika Sorenstam last year. Volunteering with the wonderful people he has met over the last six years has made his adjustment to Columbus from Kentucky easier and from these relationships he is now a regular volunteer for the Red Cross and the Nationwide Web.com Tournament. Ken is truly a blessing to Courtesy Cars/Transportation and the Memorial Tournament is lucky to have him.

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: