Clinton to play in Pacific Rubiales Colombia Pro-Am

Poroy/Getty Images
President Clinton teed it up earlier this year at the PGA TOUR's Humana Challenge in partnership with the Clinton Foundation.
January 30, 2012
Nationwide Tour staff

BOGOTA, Colombia -- The PGA TOUR, Pacific Rubiales Energy and the William J. Clinton Foundation announced today that President Clinton will travel to Bogota, Colombia in February and attend the Nationwide Tour's Pacific Rubiales Colombia Championship. The tournament will be presented by Samsung and will support the Clinton Foundation's work through the Clinton Giustra Sustainable Growth Initiative (CGSGI) in Colombia.


President Clinton will participate in tournament activities, including the Wednesday, Feb. 15th Pro-Am, featuring Nationwide Tour professionals, government officials, Pacific Rubiales executives, clients and guests. It will be the first time a sitting or former president of the United States has attended a Nationwide Tour event.

The Pacific Rubiales Colombia Championship presented by Samsung is set for the week of Feb. 13-19 at the Country Club of Bogota. It is the Nationwide Tour's season-opening event of 2012 and one of 27 that will be played in 17 states in the U.S. and Colombia, Chile, Mexico and Panama.

CGSGI was established in June 2007 by President Clinton and philanthropist Frank Giustra, and its economic and social development projects span Colombia, Peru, Mexico, and Haiti. In Colombia, CGSGI works to support entrepreneurship, create jobs, strengthen child nutrition, and expand access to health services in remote areas. CGSGI's projects address these challenges by providing more Colombians access to economic opportunities, education, and health and nutrition services. CGSGI has launched several projects to develop sustainable, market-driven businesses in Bogota and some of the most under-resourced areas of Colombia, including Cartagena, Barranquilla, Soacha and Quibdo.

CGSGI joins several other charitable organizations that will benefit from the Pacific Rubiales Colombia Championship including Water for Colombia, Manolo Cardonas Foundation, Angelitos de Luz, AMATE and Colombian Humanitaria.

Top 10: Presidents in Golf

For nearly a century the game of golf has offered refuge and recreation to the men who have held America's highest office. Check out the Top 10 Presidents in golf.

"President Clinton's participation with the Nationwide Tour in Colombia extends the very positive relationship the PGA TOUR has enjoyed with him dating back to his presidency," said PGA TOUR commissioner Tim Finchem. "While we share an affinity for the game of golf with the President, we are bonded by our shared values of giving back."

"I am pleased that my Foundation is teaming up with the PGA TOUR and Pacific Rubiales Energy to support CGSGI's work in Colombia," said President Clinton. "The Clinton Foundation is committed to reducing economic inequality in Colombia and throughout the globe, and this tournament provides a unique opportunity to advance this work."

"Staging the Pacific Rubiales Colombia Championship with our new friends in Colombia over the past couple of years has been an exciting process," said Nationwide Tour president Bill Calfee. "When you visit Colombia, experience its culture and meet its people, the perception and reality gap really hits home. This is not only an exciting international sporting endeavor, it is an opportunity to partner with President Clinton to share the story of the new Colombia with the world."

"This year's selected charity for the Pacific Rubiales Colombia Championship is CGSGI. We are honored to welcome President Clinton, a long-time friend of our country, back to Colombia," said Jose Francisco Arata, president and executive director of Pacific Rubiales Energy. "This event helps demonstrate on a global stage the progressive climate in Colombia and the value of investing in our country. Within our borders, it is a powerful platform to work with President Clinton and our charitable recipients to positively impact the communities around the country where there is great need."

Better health through golf
President Bill Clinton shared his message through golf and a partnership with the Humana Challenge. Story

More on Health Matters conference

"To have CGSGI as the selected charity for our tournament this year is a great opportunity for the event and the country of Colombia," said German Calle, tournament director of the Pacific Rubiales Colombia Championship. "To host such a world-class event shows that Colombia is on a continuous path towards President Santos main government policy, democratic prosperity."

The involvement of current or past U.S. presidents with the PGA TOUR and its events has a rich history. Presidents dating back to Dwight D. Eisenhower and including Gerald R. Ford, George H.W. Bush, Bill Clinton, George W. Bush and Barack Obama have all enjoyed a passion for the game and brought that passion to the PGA TOUR via pro-am events, The Presidents Cup, The First Tee and other activities.

President Clinton's visit to Colombia comes on the heels of recent activation of the Clinton Foundation's partnership with the PGA TOUR in Palm Springs, California. The Clinton Foundation, PGA TOUR, and Humana initiated an eight-year agreement to create the new Humana Challenge, formerly the Bob Hope Classic. The Humana Challenge's goal is to promote healthy living and work across sectors to improve the lives of people around the world. A focal event at the Humana Challenge was a one-day conference hosted by the Clinton Foundation called Health Matters: Activating Wellness In Every Generation, featuring leading advocates for health and wellness.

First played in 2010, the Pacific Rubiales Colombia Championship presented by Samsung was the Nationwide Tour's first tournament in South America and the first time a PGA TOUR-sanctioned event had been played for official money on the continent.