Press Release: Program Director Hire

Charlottesville, VA (March 6, 2018): The First Tee of the Virginia Blue Ridge announced today that Bruce Blair has been appointed as the Program Director, a new position for the organization. Blair will manage the recent fast-growing programs of The First Tee of the Virginia Blue Ridge which serves the Charlottesville and central Virginia area. Having served as a senior program director at the Staunton-Augusta YMCA for 5 years, Blair brings a wealth of experience in sports-based youth development programs to further expand the influence and impact of The First Tee of the Virginia Blue Ridge to the local community. The First Tee of the Virginia Blue Ridge, founded in 2016, is a local chapter of the international nonprofit youth development organization. With offices right next to the Birdwood Golf Course in Charlottesville, The First Tee of the Virginia Blue Ridge has a mission “to positively impact the lives of all young people, by providing transformational, educational programs that build character, instill life-enhancing values, and promote healthy choices through the game of golf.” As participant numbers increased from 118 in 2016 to 167 in 2017 and the partnership with local schools, the Boys and Girls Club of Central Virginia, and other youth-serving nonprofits is growing, Jin Ellington, the Executive Director of the First Tee of the Virginia Blue Ridge, felt the need to hire a Program Director. “We are trying to inspire, educate, and transform the lives of as many youth in the area as possible through our teaching of core values and life skills. With the addition of a Program Director to the team, we can meet the demands of growth within the community while focusing on taking our program quality and impact to the next level,” described Ellington about her vision for the growth of the organization. After a few months of searching, The First Tee of the Virginia Blue Ridge found their perfect fit. Blair has a passion for youth development utilizing sports as the vehicle. He received a Bachelor’s in Sport and Business Administration from Ball State University and a Master’s degree in Sports and Recreation from James Madison University. With over 11 years of youth development experience at JMU, various non-profit organizations, and the Staunton-Augusta YMCA, Blair is ready to help The First Tee of the Virginia Blue Ridge to reach a new level with his experiences in and his passion for youth development. “I consider myself as a forward-thinking visionary who is passionate about serving the community, impacting the lives of others, and developing young leaders who will be college-ready, career-ready, and community-ready,” said Blair.