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Golf: Hadley donates $20,000 to Napa Valley scholarship fund

Golf: Hadley donates $20,000 to Napa Valley scholarship fund

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Chesson Hadley

Posing at Alpha Omega Winery in Rutherford with a $20,000 donation to the Napa Valley Community Foundation’s The Fruit of the Vine Scholarship Fund are, from left, vintners Robin and Michelle Baggett, Vice President of Development and Communications for Napa Valley Community Foundation Lindy Solow Bouwer, PGA Tour golfer Chesson Hadley and his wife, Amanda Hadley, and scholarship recipients Kenya Cruz and Bertha Gallegos.

RUTHERFORD — PGA Tour golfer Chesson Hadley and wife Amanda Hadley, in the Napa Valley this week for the PGA Tour’s Fortinet Championship at Silverado Resort and Spa, joined Alpha Omega vintners Robin and Michelle Baggett on Tuesday to present a $20,000 ceremonial check to the Napa Valley Community Foundation’s The Fruit of the Vine Scholarship Fund at the family-owned winery.

“We’d like to extend our deepest thanks to the Hadleys for their wonderful contribution to NVCF’s Fruit of the Vine Scholarship,” NVCF President Terence Mulligan said. “Vine Scholarships are awarded with a preference for first-generation students, many of whom are the children of winery and vineyard employees. NVCF is also truly grateful to Alpha Omega Collective and Alpha Omega Collective Foundation for their own generosity to NVCF and for letting its customers, members, and visitors know about Napa Valley Community Foundation’s work.”

To help students in college this fall, the Hadleys donated the funds earlier this year through the Chesson and Amanda Hadley Family Fund to the Alpha Omega Collective Foundation, which in turn donated 100% of the monies to the NVCF. The Fruit of the Vine Scholarship Fund benefits graduating Napa County high school seniors and Napa Valley College transfer students who will find the cost of higher education a financial hardship. Preference is given to applicants who are the first in their family to attend college or are employed, or have a parent or guardian who is employed, in the Napa County wine or grape industry.

The Hadleys met two Vine recipients, Mills College sophomore Bertha Gallegos and Sonoma State University junior Kenya Cruz, and Lindy Solow Bouwer, NVCF Vice President of Development and Communications, at the check presentation. The Vine Scholarship allows the Hadleys to give back to a place where they receive much pleasure.

“Napa is Amanda’s and my favorite place,” Chesson said. “We honeymooned here. We love the food, the climate, the views and the wine, of course. It’s just a special place that has a lot of meaning to us and where we like to celebrate different milestones.”

The Hadleys chose the Vine Scholarship after Michelle Baggett, Executive Director of the Alpha Omega Collective Foundation, presented them several foundation options for helping youths in Napa Valley.

“Chesson and Amanda are passionate about charities that give growth and prosperity to the educational, mental and physical well-being of children,” Michelle Baggett said. “They essentially have chosen to support the growth of Napa Valley by giving first-generation, college-bound children whose families work in Napa Valley an opportunity to have an education which may bring them back to their hometown community to be a part of its sustainability.”

The gift from the Hadleys to NVCF via the AOC Foundation marks another way the Baggetts direct and encourage Alpha Omega wine enthusiasts to help the Napa Valley community. After the North Bay Fires in 2017, Alpha Omega hosted two Big Bottle Benefit BBQs, underwriting the costs of both, and raising $100,000 for wildfire relief, of which $95,000 went to the NVCF’s Disaster Relief Fund. The other $5,000 went to the Rutherford Volunteer Fire Department.

To help those affected by the 2020 fires in Napa County, the NVCF received $25,000 from Alpha Omega supporters who either made donations at the winery’s request or purchased wine during virtual tastings where a percentage of the sales went to the NVCF.

Ironically, it was at the PGA Tour’s 2017 tournament in Napa, then called the Safeway Open, when the Baggetts and Hadleys first philanthropically merged after meeting that summer. Inspired by the Hadleys and PGA member Scott Brown and his wife, Allison, the Baggetts donated 10% of their tasting room wine sales, $10,000, during the tournament to Samaritan’s Purse, a faith-based disaster relief agency that responded to hurricanes Maria, Irma, Harvey and Jose. On the final day of the tournament, the North Bay fires erupted.

“It is an honor to call Chesson and Amanda our friends,” Robin Baggett said. “It is rare to find more giving and wonderful people than the Hadleys. Their support of our community and others shows that their passion to give back knows no borders.”

To show their appreciation for the Hadleys and their support of Napa Valley, the Baggetts presented the Hadleys with a 6L of Alpha Omega ERA Napa Valley, Alpha Omega’s flagship wine and Chesson’s favorite.

The Alpha Omega Collective Foundation is the philanthropic arm of the Alpha Omega Collective and a

501(c)(3) organization whose mission is to inspire and encourage charitable giving in the next generation of Napa Valley’s leaders. The foundation supports organizations and initiatives that energize the valley with a sense of responsibility for building on a strong tradition of goodwill and aims to empower all people and visionary companies to realize their value to philanthropic causes.

The foundation does not use any donated funds for administrative or fundraising costs; therefore, 100% of all monies raised go directly towards its mission. Founded in 2018, the collective is the umbrella brand for the Baggetts’ wineries — Alpha Omega in Napa Valley, Tolosa in San Luis Obispo’s Edna Valley, and Perinet in Spain’s Priorat region.

The foundation works with local donors and nonprofits to tackle the most important challenges the valley faces. Now celebrating 26 years of service to the community, the foundation has distributed more than $85 million in grants to improve the quality of life for residents of the region, and currently serves as the philanthropic partner to thousands of individuals, families, nonprofit agencies and corporations in Napa Valley and beyond.

The Napa Valley Community Disaster Relief Fund is managed by Napa Valley Community Foundation and was established with a $10 million lead gift from Napa Valley Vintners following the 2014 South Napa Earthquake. So far, the fund has distributed more than $25 million for relief and recovery from recent disasters.

PGA Tour golfer Chesson Hadley and Vice President of Development and Communications for Napa Valley Community Foundation Lindy Solow Bouwer talk about Hadley's donation.

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