FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: June 21, 2021
Emily Tillo, THE PLAYERS Championship, firstname.lastname@example.org, 904-424-8572
Matt Welch named THE PLAYERS 2022 Tournament Chairman; Kevin Copeland joins volunteer leadership team as newest Vice-Chairman
Ponte Vedra Beach, Florida – THE PLAYERS Championship announced today that Matt Welch has been named its 2022 Tournament Chairman. Welch succeeds Troy Smith for the role that oversees the 1,500+ volunteers who support the PGA TOUR’s flagship event. In addition, Kevin Copeland has been appointed Vice-Chairman, joining Houston Bowles, Lee Nimnicht, Tyler Oldenburg and Marc Hassan. The volunteer leadership team, commonly known as the Red and Blue Coats, manages the 47 committees responsible for the operations integral to the championship’s success.
Entering his 15th year as a volunteer with THE PLAYERS, Welch has managed a variety of committees, including ShotLink, parking, ecology, golf cart management, stadium village and disabled guest services.
“I am truly honored to assume the role of Chairman for THE PLAYERS Championship 2022,” said Welch. “THE PLAYERS and its past Chairmen have entrusted me with the responsibility of working alongside the greatest volunteers in golf to present this signature event to the world and make a year-round, positive impact on Northeast Florida. I am so grateful for this opportunity.”
Welch retired in 2015 as President of Elkins Constructors, Inc. with 32 years of service., where he led many notable construction projects in Northeast Florida. He continues to serve the industry as a construction consultant while maintaining an active presence on several boards and organizations, including the Board of Supervisors for the Clay County Utility Authority and the Board of Directors for Catholic Charities. A Georgia native, Welch graduated from the Georgia Institute of Technology with a bachelor’s degree in Civil Engineering. Welch and his wife, Susan, live in Fleming Island.
Kevin Copeland began volunteering with THE PLAYERS in 2017 and has directed the efforts of numerous committees, including volunteer shuttle, golf cart management and hospitality services at Benefactor and The Patio locations.
As the newest Vice-Chairman, Copeland will oversee the Volunteer Services division, which supervises apparel, credentials, concessions, office and volunteer personnel, photography, recognition, supplies, volunteer information, offsite shuttle and volunteer transportation.
Copeland currently serves as Senior Vice President, Head of Check Fraud Strategy and Analytics for Bank of America, where he manages a worldwide team responsible for predictive processes to prevent and stop fraud.
Copeland has called Jacksonville home for 25 years and is active with a number of youth advocacy organizations, including the Children’s Home Society (CHS) of North Florida, where he serves as Board Chairman, and Coding Sharks, a STEM-based nonprofit that he founded. A graduate of the University of Central Florida, Copeland has two sons, Aiden and Sebastian, and enjoys outdoor adventures and nature.
“It is truly an honor to be able to assist our 1,500-plus volunteers in moving this pre-eminent event into the future,” said Copeland. “Having witnessed firsthand THE PLAYERS Championship’s positive growth and change over the last 20 years, I am really looking forward to giving back to our community through this new leadership role while continuing to cultivate and inspire the next strong group of leaders.”
THE PLAYERS 2022 is March 8-13, 2022. Volunteer registration is slated to open in the fall. Please visit THEPLAYERS.com/volunteer for more information.
Photos: Click here to download high resolution versions of the above photos. Please credit PGA TOUR.
About THE PLAYERS Championship
THE PLAYERS Championship annually combines the strongest field in golf with the world-class venue that is THE PLAYERS Stadium Course at TPC Sawgrass. Optum®, Morgan Stanley and Grant Thornton LLP are the exclusive Proud Partners of THE PLAYERS. Proceeds from THE PLAYERS benefit Northeast Florida charities and have totaled more than $100 million since it began in 1974 and moved to Ponte Vedra Beach in 1977. For more on THE PLAYERS, visit THEPLAYERS.com. For more on the surrounding areas, visit floridashistoriccoast.com or visitjacksonville.com.
Optum is a leading information and technology-enabled health services business dedicated to helping make the health system work better for everyone. With more than 180,000 people worldwide, Optum delivers intelligent, integrated solutions that help to modernize the health system and improve overall population health. Optum is part of UnitedHealth Group (NYSE:UNH). For more information, visit optum.com
About Morgan Stanley
Morgan Stanley (NYSE: MS) is a leading global financial services firm providing investment banking, securities, wealth management and investment management services. With offices in more than 42 countries, the Firm’s employees serve clients worldwide including corporations, governments, institutions and individuals. For more information about Morgan Stanley, please visit http://www.morganstanley.com.
About Grant Thornton LLP
Founded in Chicago in 1924, Grant Thornton LLP (Grant Thornton) is the U.S. member firm of Grant Thornton International Ltd, one of the world’s leading organizations of independent audit, tax and advisory firms. Grant Thornton, which has revenues in excess of $1.9 billion and operates more than 50 offices, works with a broad range of dynamic publicly and privately held companies, government agencies, financial institutions, and civic and religious organizations.
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