Augusta National and the Masters Golf Tournament Female Membership – Staying the Course? A Notre Dame case study prepared by research assistants Andrew Nelson, Ashish Singh, and Ray Swart under the direction of Professor J. S. O’Rourke, IV
Agenda • Introduction • Augusta National Golf Club • The Masters Golf Tournament • The Case: April – September • CBS • The Sponsors • The PGA • The NCWO • Martha Burk • William “Hootie” Johnson • The Case Continues • Discussion Questions
Augusta National Golf Club • History • Membership • • 300 Members • • By invitation only • • First African American in 1990 • • Currently no female members
The Masters Golf Tournament • History • One of the most prestigious • events in the world • 2002 - $5.5 million purse • $3.3 million to charity • The Green Jacket
April, 2002 At the 2002 Masters in April, Lloyd Ward comments to reporters that the leaders at Augusta should admit a female member and that they should do it soon.
June 12 Martha Burk writes a letter requesting that Augusta open their membership to women.
July 9 A day after responding to Ms. Burk with a personal letter, William Johnson issues a press release saying Augusta will not be “bullied, threatened or intimidated.” He goes on to say that perhaps some day a female will be admitted but it will not be, “at the point of a bayonet.”
July 30 Ms. Burk sends letters to the C.E.O.’s of the television sponsors and the commissioner of the PGA asking them to suspend their sponsorship of the Masters Golf Tournament. Douglas Daft Coca-Cola Samuel Palmisano IBM Sanford Weill Citigroup Mark LaNeve Cadillac Tim Finchem PGA Richard Wagoner General Motors
August 30 Mr. Johnson releases the television sponsors from their commitment to the 2003 tournament.
September 18 Ms. Burk asks CBS to suspend broadcasting the Masters.
September 19 Sean McManus replies that CBS intends to cover the 2003 tournament.
Columbia Broadcasting System • Partnership with the Masters since 1956 • Unique relationship with the Masters • 2002 fees for airing the Masters - $5 million • Prestige more important than revenue
The Professional Golfers’ Association • Founded in 1916 • Largest sports organization in the world • Conducts 40 annual tournaments • Requires host clubs to have diversity policies • The Masters is not an official PGA event
The National Council of Women’s Organizations • Oldest and largest coalition • 160 member organizations • 7 million women • Goals • Structure
Martha Burk, Ph.D. • Chair of the NCWO • Moral issue, not a legal issue • Initiated action after reading Lloyd Ward’s comments • Methodical pursuit
William “Hootie” Johnson • Chairman of Augusta National Golf Club • Recent actions are an enigma • • More African American members • • Civil Rights movement • • Darla Moore
Early October Augusta members break the “code of silence.” Sanford Weill Kenneth Chenault Lloyd Ward
November 12 The final word? vs.
Discussion Questions • What are the basic business issues in the case? • Should Augusta admit a female member? If so, when? How? • Who are the key stakeholders other than those mentioned? • Should the NCWO continue to press the issue? If so, how? • What are the possible ramifications for both Augusta and the NCWO? • What problems might prominent members of Augusta face? • What other courses of action could have been pursued • by key individuals?