ear Friends of Steve Twenty-five years is a long run for a charity golf event. Who knows how many of the estimated 150,000 amateur charity golf events out there have reached this milestone? Even the other Cox Classic—hosted the past 18 years by the Omaha Community Foundation, with support from the PGA—announced last fall that their tournament days were over. Thanks for your service Omaha Community Foundation; if your presenting sponsor, Lexus, still has some game, please send them our way! So how does an event keep going after #25—a milestone year—to get to #26? It helps when the event honors a beloved friend, colleague, and cancer victim who died far too young at 32. It also helps when you have a great volunteer team made up of committed, resourceful, and inspired people. Over time, the Cox Classic volunteers have become the equivalent of family and the event a kind of family reunion. Ultimately though, any event that sustains itself over the long haul has a soul. The soul is where all energy and inspiration are drawn. The soul is often closely linked to the cause for which the funds raised are targeted or to the direct beneficiaries associated with that cause or to a person who’s memorialized through the event—or all three together. For the Cox Classic, the soul originates with our namesake, Steve Cox. Those
who witnessed his epic battle with cancer—whose hearts were broken when he passed and who were changed forever by his irrepressibly positive outlook—knew something had to be done. To let his passing become a mere footnote in the otherwise busy, chaotic lives we all lead would have been a tragic waste. But our #26 has been also fortified by the energy from a “hometown” resource in the fight: the Rutgers Cancer Institute of New Jersey. Buzzing with brilliant doctors and staff who are in the trenches every day, the Institute is engaged in innovative patient care, leading-edge research, and aggressive clinical trials that are helping to decrease the death rate from cancer. New drugs, personalized medicine, and precise targeting of drug therapy are having a big impact while lessening the physical toll on those hit with cancer. Thanks to places like the Rutgers Cancer Institute of New Jersey, great news is now replacing sad news for many families and victims of cancer. And what could be better for the soul than that? Then you meet beneficiaries like today’s keynote speaker, Kelsey Flanigan. Hurdles in life are always relative, but few of us have had to deal with what has been thrown in young Kelsey’s direction. Her life credo: “I Can, I Will.” Indeed, Kelsey, a 2013 Rutgers
grad, is an amazing example of the power of persistence, positive outlook, and a strong supportive network of family and friends. That supportive network also features a highly competent and caring medical team from the Rutgers Cancer Institute of New Jersey, including another Rutgers alumnus, Dr. Shabbar Danish. As Chief of Neurosurgery at the Institute, Dr. Danish played a pivotal role in Kelsey’s story. In fact, while Kelsey explored many institutions and avenues of treatment, through it all Dr. Danish was always there to answer any of her questions or concerns. “The Institute’s staff is wonderful,” says Kelsey, “as is Dr. Danish. We have a unique bond and he’s always there for me.”
Thank you all for your generous support, and for making the Cox Classic part of your first Monday of October tradition.
So as we christen #26, celebrate our past, and revel in all the good that has come from the Cox Classic, we are not resting on our laurels. In fact, there are no laurels in what we do. No surprise, the Cox Classic’s soul—originating with friend, Steve, but amplified by heroes like Kelsey and Dr. Danish—is all we need.
Kelsey, Brendan, and Caitlin Flanigan at 2015 Turkey Trot 5K in Flemington, NJ
Chairman Steven A. Cox Foundation
Do not let what you cannot do interfere with what you can do. ~John Wooden
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Susan Campbell ~ David Chmiel ~ Henry Cox, Chairman Emeritus ~ John Dowd ~ Michael Faletto ~ Paul Ferriero Mike Forrestall ~ Fred Greenspan ~ Mike Marion ~ Tim Omaggio ~ Rich Szigety ~ Chris Thedinga 13 Fredon-Marksboro Road, Newton, NJ 07860 / (973) 600-2848 / www.coxcharityclassic.com
She Can, She Will
ith college behind her, Kelsey Flanigan was ready to take the world by storm. The slim, strikingly attractive 23-year-old had graduated from Rutgers in 2013, where she majored in journalism, sang a capella, and was a member of a student sketch comedy club. She loved films and writing. Her plan was to head to Los Angeles and get a job in filmmaking, or maybe become a writer for “Saturday Night Live.” Perhaps she’d try acting or stand-up comedy. No dream was too big. But in early 2014, Flanigan had to put her dreams on hold. This young woman who’d never been sick a day in her life, who exercised, kickboxed, practiced yoga, and ate a vegan diet to stay healthy, was diagnosed with a brain tumor: a
Flanigan knows an astrocytoma is nothing to take lightly. In the fight of her young life, she is working hard to keep negative thoughts at bay. “On my worst days I’ve felt an inner strength pushing me,” she says. “It’s a strength I’ll try to never let go of.” OUT OF THE BLUE Her ordeal began in the fall of 2013. She was getting ready to begin her job search in earnest, but wanted to do some traveling first. In late November she and a friend went to Thailand, a country she had always wanted to visit. Staying in hostels, they island-hopped by boat, visiting some of the world’s most beautiful beaches. Two days before they were to return home, the young women
Learn how a recent college grad diagnosed with a brain tumor is finding inner strength thanks to the help of the Brain and Spine Tumor Program at Rutgers Cancer Institute of New Jersey. By Mary Ann Littell grade III astrocytoma. This rare tumor involves astrocytes— star-shaped cells with ‘arms’ that penetrate into many areas of the brain. In the world of brain tumors, all are worrisome; it’s just a matter of degree. An astrocytoma is a serious and insidious tumor that requires aggressive therapy. She underwent treatment at Rutgers Cancer Institute of New Jersey and at Robert Wood Johnson University Hospital (RWJ), the flagship hospital for the Cancer Institute. It included removal of the tumor by neurosurgeon Shabbar Danish, MD. It was a grueling process, though you’d never guess it by looking at her now. Flanigan says she’s in “recovery mode.” Only instead of polishing her comedy routine or loading her car for the trip to California, she’s having chemotherapy to maintain her current state of health, which she describes as “stable.”
boarded a boat for a final island trip. Suddenly, Flanigan slumped to the deck. She awakened a few minutes later, bruised and bloody, with a swollen tongue. Her friend stood worriedly over her. “You had a seizure,” she said. Feeling weak and disoriented, Flanigan sat for a few minutes to clear her head. The two then left the boat and went to a local clinic, a visit that proved frustrating. “They didn’t take me seriously,” Flanigan says. “They thought I was just another delusional American backpacker and sent me away with anxiety medication and a powder for dehydration.” Their appetite for sightseeing gone, they stayed at the hostel until their return flight two days later. “I wasn’t really afraid,” Flanigan recalls. “I couldn’t believe anything was seriously
wrong. But the seizure was terrifying. What if it happened again?” Her mind wandered to the severe headache she’d had the day before. She had dismissed it, thinking it was a migraine or some other minor ‘bug’ she’d picked up somewhere. But now she was not so sure.
One memory of that day stands out vividly: the neurosurgeon offering words of comfort, calmly giving Flanigan and her mother time to compose themselves. “He was very caring and patient,” she continues. “He let me cry. When I was done, he explained what we had to do.”
Arriving home in Pittstown, New Jersey, Flanigan was so tired that she waited until the following day to tell her parents what happened. Her mother took her to a physician right away and Flanigan had an MRI. The physician called the mother and daughter into his office. Pointing to a large, dark shadow on the MRI, he said, “That’s a tumor, a big one. You need to see a neurosurgeon right away—like today.” He recommended Shabbar Danish, saying he was “one of the best around.” In shock, they went straight to his office, her father rushing from work to meet them there.
On January 30, 2014, Flanigan underwent a craniotomy at RWJ. In the five-hour procedure, Danish first made an incision in the scalp, then drilled a series of small holes in the skull and connected them to remove a section of bone. “We excised the most malignant part of the tumor but could not get it all without affecting neurological function,” says the neurosurgeon. “There are many risks with this type of surgery—including the possibility of neurological deficit, stroke, hemorrhage, or infection. She came through really well.” Danish was there when Flanigan regained consciousness in the recovery room, and she recalls him playfully giving her a fist bump.
She Can, She Will COURSE OF ACTION Dr. Danish, the chief of neurosurgical oncology at the Cancer Institute, specializes in hard-to-treat cancers, including primary brain and spine tumors as well as secondary tumors that begin in the breast, lung, or prostate and spread to other parts of the body. He specializes in minimally and noninvasive solutions to treat brain and spine cancer, and has research interests and publications in both fields. His multidisciplinary team includes neuro-oncologists, radiation oncologists, neurosurgeons, nurses, social workers, and other specialists. After assessing Flanigan’s tumor, which involved most of the right frontal lobe, an area of the brain that controls key neurological functions, the neurosurgeon told Flanigan she needed surgery to remove it. The next step would be radiation and chemotherapy. “The idea of having a tumor was bad enough,” Flanigan recalls. But someone cutting it out of my brain was even more terrifying.”
Danish, well-known for his rapport with patients, has fellowship training in high-tech procedures to fight cancer. An assistant professor of neurosurgery at Rutgers Robert Wood Johnson Medical School, he is the director of the Stereotactic and Functional Neurosurgery Program at RWJ. This tool is designed to treat lesions and tumors in the brain and upper spinal cord without harming healthy surrounding tissue. Unfortunately, Flanigan’s tumor was too large for this type of procedure. To plan her next phase of treatment, Flanigan and her parents researched and visited major cancer centers across the country, including Duke and the University of Pennsylvania. But in the end, she opted to return to the Rutgers Cancer Institute. “I felt comfortable here and was confident I was getting the best care,” she says. “Dr. Danish is great. No matter how many questions we have,
he’s never too busy to answer them. He’s always there for us, whenever we call or email him. There’s a connection I’ve never had with any other doctor.” STRONGER DAY BY DAY On May 14, 2014, Flanigan had a second craniotomy at RWJ to remove remaining traces of the tumor. She came through the procedure well. Afterward she rested at home, napping and going outside for short walks. In addition to her yoga she took up reiki, a Japanese technique for stress reduction that is believed to promote healing. “Reiki is tied in to mental health,” she comments. “It made my mind feel strong and I believe that helped me recover physically.” At home, her mother cooked nutritious meals for her, and as Flanigan began to feel better, the two cooked together. Her father, an airline pilot, took her out to lunch and on a short trip to Seattle. “Recovering from the surgeries was hard—for me, my parents and my brother and sister,” Flanigan admits. “My family all sacrificed a lot of their time to be with me during my recovery. They’ve been amazing, my support system. Without them, I don’t know what I would have done.” During this period of recovery she spent hours in bed, feeling like her life was on hold. “I needed to do something to help pass the time,” she says. Throughout her treatment she’d been keeping a journal, which ended up as a regular blog feature on The Huffington Post. huffingtonpost.com/ kelsey-flanigan/ “I’ve always loved to write and the blog has been a great way of expressing how I feel,” she says.
FIGHTING SPIRIT During the summer of 2014 Flanigan underwent radiation, five days a week for six and a half weeks. She was treated with temozolomide, an oral chemotherapy drug for malignant brain tumors. Once that was finished, she took a four-week hiatus, then began maintenance chemotherapy with the same drug, five days a month for six months. Once Flanigan began radiation she lost her hair. Buying a wig was an experience she never thought she’d have, but it turned out to have a plus side, connecting her with another caring community: the stylists at Splitenz Studio. The salon in Clinton, New Jersey, has its own wig specialist, Zee Entrabartolo. Flanigan calls her the ‘wig guru.’ “Her foundation, Hair to Share, raises money each year to make wigs more affordable for women with cancer,” says Flanigan. “It’s such a great cause, something I’d like to get involved with one day.” Flanigan finished her maintenance therapy in late March. Research does not show any added benefit from this therapy beyond six months, says Danish. She’ll be monitored closely, with frequent MRIs and blood work every few weeks. “The tumor will always be there,” explains Danish. “It could return. We don’t know when—it may take many years. Right now she’s stable and doing well. If Kelsey needs us, we’ll be here for her.” As Flanigan continues her recovery, she still dreams of going to Los Angeles and finding a career in film or comedy. But right now she takes things day by day. “Sure, sometimes I ask, ‘Why me?’” she says. “But I’m so thankful to have come this far and to have connected with such a caring network of people, from my surgeon on down.” Her blog is smart and spunky and reflects her fighting spirit. “My ‘mellow vegan, yet aggressive kickboxing lifestyle’ seems to be working for me,” she writes. “Because sometimes you just need to punch something.” Reprinted Courtesy of Rutgers Cancer Institute of New Jersey Kelsey Flanigan photography: Nick Romanenko Dr. Danish photography: John Emerson
Rutgers Cancer Institute of New Jersey
utgers Cancer Institute of New Jersey is the State’s only National Cancer Institute-designated Comprehensive Cancer Center and stands as one of only 45 such centers in the United States. The Cancer Institute of New Jersey has successfully gained national stature as a recognized leader in research and clinical care − developing the latest medicines and clinical trials, at the forefront of precision medicine, and serving as a magnet for the country’s leading cancer researchers, clinicians, and industry. Rutgers Cancer Institute is dedicated to improving the detection, treatment and care of patients with cancer, and to serving as an educational resource for cancer prevention.
Physician-scientists at Rutgers Cancer Institute engage in translational research, transforming their laboratory discoveries into clinical practice. Rutgers Cancer Institute delivers advanced comprehensive care for adults and children. As part of Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey, the Cancer Institute of New Jersey is one of the leading cancer research facilities in the country attracting millions of dollars each year in federal, state and
private source grants. Research programs and core facilities at Rutgers Cancer Institute enhance and support the cancer research of close to 200 members at Rutgers Robert Wood Johnson Medical School, School of Public Health and New Jersey Medical School, as well as Princeton University, and the Institute for Advanced Study in Princeton. Basic scientists, clinical researchers, and population scientists meet regularly to exchange information and ensure that laboratory discoveries are refined and applied to clinical care as quickly as possible, that clinical observations reach laboratory researchers on a continuing basis, and
that prevention strategies are interwoven in to all research programs. Understanding the molecular and biological nature of cancer influences how physicians at the Cancer Institute of New Jersey think about cancer prevention, prognosis and treatment. Information about molecular and biological characteristics of a tumor can be used to design more rigorous treatment strategies for patients who
cannot be cured by current standard methods. Opportunities to manage cancer have increased and clinical trials have yielded results that will have a profound effect in the prevention and treatment of many cancers. Clinical trials test new treatments and new ways of using existing treatments for cancer. At the Cancer Institute of New Jersey, researchers use these studies to answer questions about a treatment and to make sure it is safe and effective. There are several types of clinical trials currently underway at the Cancer Institute of New Jersey including treatment, prevention, screening and behavioral /quality of life. As New Jersey’s only NCIdesignated Comprehensive Cancer Center, patients have access to treatment options not available at other institutions within the state such as precision medicine. Rutgers Cancer Institute of New Jersey is at the forefront of precision medicine. The center’s precision medicine initiative, performs gene sequencing of patients’ tumors to reveal their unique characteristics and help doctors tailor individualized therapies or treatments. The center’s precision medicine program is fueled by a Molecular Tumor Board that brings together all clinical oncology disciplines, pathology, systems biology, genetics and other basic science faculty members to address individual patient treatment options based on molecular abnormalities identified through extensive genomic testing.
At Rutgers Cancer Institute of New Jersey, a dedicated team of nationally renowned specialists including medical oncologists, surgical oncologists, radiation oncologists, social workers and nurses identify and meet the needs of the individual patient. Each multidisciplinary team focuses on a specific disease and is led by a physician who is a clinical and academic expert in the cause and treatment of that disease. Multidisciplinary, clinical programs at the Rutgers Cancer Institute of New Jersey include: Stacy Goldstein Breast Cancer Center, Blood and Marrow Transplant Program, Gastrointestinal/Hepatobiliary Oncology Program, Fannie E. Rippel Center for Women’s Reproductive Cancers, Leukemia/Lymphoma/ Hematologic Malignancies, Liver Cancer and Bile Duct Cancer Care Program, Melanoma and Soft Tissue Oncology Program, Neuro-oncology Program, Pediatric Hematology/Oncology Program, Phase I / Developmental Therapeutics Program, Prostate Cancer Program, Thoracic Oncology Program, and Urologic Oncology Program. Dr. Robert DiPaola Director, Rutgers Cancer Institute of New Jersey
C O N G R AT U L AT I O N S O N # 2 6 Office of the Director Rutgers Cancer Institute of New Jersey Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey 195 Little Albany Street New Brunswick, New Jersey 08903-2681
Phone: (732) 235-8064 Fax: (732) 235-8094 cinj.org
October 5, 2015 Dear Friends of Steve: Rutgers Cancer Institute of New Jersey is honored to be the beneficiary of the 26th Annual Cox Charity Classic. Your contributions to help those battling cancer over the years have had a great impact. Honoring the legacy of Steve Cox helps us all to remember that while we have made progress in the fight against cancer – a disease that touches so many – much still remains to be done. As the State’s only National Cancer Institute-designated Comprehensive Cancer Center, Rutgers Cancer Institute of New Jersey stands as one of only 45 such centers in the United States. The Cancer Institute of New Jersey has successfully gained national stature as a recognized leader in research and clinical care − developing the latest medicines and clinical trials and serving as a magnet for the country's leading cancer researchers, clinicians, hospitals and industry. New Jersey's citizens have benefited greatly from access to in-state quality care provided by the Cancer Institute of New Jersey. Funding generated from the Cox Classic will help advance the research being conducted in our Prostate Cancer Program, help to continue the patient care and education programs of our LIFE Center, and will support the Steven A. Cox Scholarship in Cancer Research at Rutgers University. We congratulate the Steven A. Cox Foundation for helping to make a difference and are grateful to be a part of this wonderful tradition. Sincerely,
Robert S. DiPaola, MD Director Rutgers Cancer Institute of New Jersey
WE COULDN’T HAVE DONE IT WITHOUT YOU! To all the participants at the 26th Annual Cox Classic, thank you for helping us in the fight against cancer!
Thank you! S U P P O RT. R U T G E R S . E D U
October 5, 2015 Dear Friends of Steve, Once again, it is our pleasure to congratulate all of the participants in and supporters of the Cox Charity Classic. Your efforts continue to make a significant difference in the lives of those touched by cancer. At Celgene, we share your dedication to improving the lives of patients with cancer and other serious diseases and continue our unrelenting pursuit of new and innovative therapies. We are honored to partner each year with the Stephen A. Cox Foundation and salute the tremendous work you do on behalf of patients everywhere. Please accept our congratulations on this event and let us add our most heartfelt thanks to the many supporters that make it possible. Sincerely,
Greg Geissman Senior Director, Public Relations Celgene Corporation
Committed to Improving the Lives of Patients WorldwideÂŽ www.celgene.com
September 9, 2015 Friends of Steve, Welcome to the 26th annual Cox Classic. Your participation in the Cox Classic enables the Steven A. Cox Foundation to support Rutgers Cancer Institute of New Jersey. The Cox Classic is more than just a great day of golf with friends and colleagues. It is a day of remembering Steve Cox and supporting people dedicated to finding a cure for cancer. We are proud of our long term association with the event. We congratulate the Cox Foundation for 26 years of dedication, commitment and support of the charities. On behalf of the employees of The Hibbert Group I thank you for your participation and hope that you have a fantastic day of golf, competition and friendship. Sincerely,
Timothy J. Moonan Chief Executive Officer The Hibbert Group
We applaud your impressive efforts! The Hibbert Group is proud proud to once again serve as as Presenting Sponsor for the 26th Annual 25th Annual Steven A. Cox Charity Classic Classic and its worthwhile causes.
Comprehensive Marketing Services
Database Services | Customer Engagement | Global Fulfillment | Professional Services | Life Sciences | Digital Solutions www.hibbert.com • P.O. Box 8116, Trenton, NJ 08650-0116 • 1-888-HIBBERT (442-2378) • 609-394-7500
For please callcall 1-888-HIBBERT (442-2378) ext. 6867, Formore moreinformation, information, please 1-888-HIBBERT (442-2378) ext. 6867, or visit us at www.hibbertgroup.com. or visit us at www.hibbert.com.
Empire Golf Management & New Jersey National Golf Club welcome all “Friends of Steve” October 5, 2015 Dear Friends of Steve, Welcome Back! As you know, the Cox Charity Classic has become one of the signature annual events on the New Jersey National Golf Club calendar, and we are thrilled to keep with tradition, and once again serve as the host venue for this fantastic event. It’s great to see Val Skinner’s continued support of this event, and participation from the LPGA Tour players is truly inspiring. Thanks to the commitment of so many individuals, this event pays tribute to the life of Steven A. Cox, while benefiting the wonderful work being done at Rutgers Cancer Institute of New Jersey. The golf course is in great shape, and the staff at New Jersey National will ensure that the 26th Annual Cox Charity Classic is a memorable experience. It’s a privilege for Empire Golf Management and the entire staff at NJN to be part of such a special day. Enjoy the day as you tee-it-up with friends and colleagues to honor Steve’s legacy, and support other worthy causes. Sincerely,
Eric Bergstol Owner & Founder Empire Golf Management
A premier private golf club nestled among the sweeping Somerset Hills, golf membership at New Jersey National (NJN) is unlike any other private club membership in the area, featuring: • Club max benefits: membership privileges at sister courses in the area. • NJN is a Reciprocal Access Club within the Pacific Links International portfolio. Members can enjoy exclusive playing privileges and discounted greens fees (up to 50% off) at a collection of more than 60 premier private golf clubs domestically & internationally.
For information on membership, golf outings or special events, please contact Pierre Bohemond at 908.781.9400 ext. 1104 or email@example.com.
One Membership... Many Golf Courses!
Reception Program Agenda Welcome
Mike Marion, Chair, Steven A. Cox Foundation
Presenting Sponsors Pierre Bohemond, General Manager, New Jersey National Tim Moonan, CEO, The Hibbert Group Greg Geissman, Senior Director, Celgene Corporation
Kelsey Flanigan, Brain Cancer Survivor and Advocate introduced by Dr. Shabbar Danish, Rutgers Cancer Institute of New Jersey
Annual Toast to Steve Cox Henry Cox, Chairman Emeritus, Steve A. Cox Foundation
Friend of Steve Video Winners
Val Skinner, Founder, Val Skinner Foundation and LPGA Pros In the Fight to Eradicate Breast Cancer
Susan Campbell, Trustee, Steven A. Cox Foundation Do not let what you cannot do interfere with what you can do. ~John Wooden Tim Omaggio, President, Steven A. Cox Foundation
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The Stars Align! VAL SKINNER Born in Hamilton, Montana, and with ties to Nebraska, Cox Classic legend Val Skinner now calls Bay Head NJ her home. After completing a storied collegiate career at Oklahoma State University, Val joined the LPGA Tour in 1983. During her highly successful run on the LPGA Tour, Val racked up six wins and some $2.5 million in career earnings. Val later joined the Legends Tour, and became a commentator for the Golf Channel. Val has also become a champion in the fight against cancer through her tireless work with the Val Skinner Foundation and the LIFE Center at the Rutgers Cancer Institute of New Jersey. Look for Val today on the 7th tee, and a “Hit with the Pro” opportunity. KRIS TSCHETTER Born in Detroit, Michigan, and with ties to South Dakota, Kris
LEE LOPEZ A returning “Friend of Steve”, Lee is a native of Whittier, California, where she played golf at La Serna high. Finished her collegiate golf career at UCLA, where she earned First Team All America and All PAC 10 honors. Lee has twelve top ten finishes on the Symetra Tour since her rookie season in 2014. Look for Lee today on the 4th tee, and a “Hit with the Pro” opportunity. BRIANNA DO Hailing from Long Beach, California, Brianna was a member of the 2007 Junior Solheim Cup team. She played collegiate golf at UCLA, where she earned Second Team All PAC 10 honors. In 2011, Brianna won the U.S. Women’s Amateur Public Links Championship at Bandon Dunes Golf Resort in Oregon. An up-and-coming player, Brianna has already
The 26th Annual features greats from yesterday, today & tomorrow! now lives in Warrenton, Virginia. She joined the LPGA Tour after completing an outstanding collegiate career at TCU, where she was a three time All SWC honoree. She has two wins, ten 2nd place finishes, 50 top tens, and almost three million dollars in career earnings. In addition to her accomplishments on the course, Kris has also written a book about her amazing friendship with the great Ben Hogan. Look for Kris today on the 15th tee, and a “Beat the Pro” Closest to the Pin competition!!
experienced playing on LPGA tour. Look for Brianna today on the 11th tee, and a “Hit with the Pro” opportunity. CASEY GRICE Casey is a Texas native, where she was an individual class 5A high school champion. She played golf collegiately at UNC-Chapel Hill, where she was a two-time First Team All ACC honoree. Since joining the Symetra Tour, Casey has earned a number of top ten finishes. Look for Casey today on the 1st tee, and a “Hit with the Pro” opportunity.
BROOKE PANCAKE Brooke is a native of Chattanooga, Tennessee. She played collegiate golf for the Crimson Tide of the University of Alabama, where she finished her career as an All American on the course and in the classroom. After completing an outstanding collegiate career, Brooke joined the LPGA Tour in 2012. Look for Brooke today on the 8th tee, and a “Beat the Pro” Long Drive competition!!
MADELEINE SHIELS Madeleine was born and raised in Boise, Idaho. She played golf collegiately as a Nebraska Cornhusker, where she earned First Team All B1G honors. Madeleine won her first Symetra Tour title in 2015, taking honors with a two stroke win at the FireKeepers Casino Hotel Championship. Look for Madeleine today on the 17th tee, and a “Hit with the Pro” Do not let what you cannot do interfere with what you can do. ~John Wooden opportunity.
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nnie Park nnie is a 20-year-old former USC player from Levittown, New York, who has jumped 15th to seventh on the Symetra Tour money list with $42,596 and with three wins on the Symetra Tour has earned a berth on the 2016 LPGA Tour! Annie attended USC and came the to the university ranked as the No. 18 junior in the country by AJGA and played as an amateur in the 2012 U.S. Women’s Open. Look for Annie today on the 10th tee, and a “Beat the Pro” Long Drive competition!
Defending Champs October 5, 2015 Dear Friends of Steve,
2014 Cox Classic Champs pictured from left to right: Andrew Schwaeber, Kevin Epstein, and Andy Brooks, with LPGA legend Pat Bradley.
Thank you for your participation in the Cox Charity Classic. Your consistent compassion for families throughout New Jersey who are dealing with cancer is needed and valued. The funds we have raised together for Rutgers Cancer Institute of New Jersey continue to make a substantial impact on better outcomes in the fight against cancer. Honoring the legacy of Steven A. Cox reminds us all that we must continue to push for what those who lost their battle needed most, a cure. Our missions in the fight against cancer are similar; LIFE (LPGA Pros In the Fight to Eradicate breast cancer) also honors the legacy of a dear friend and fellow professional, Heather Farr, who lost her fight against breast cancer at the age of 28. Our friendship and love for Heather through her experience is what helped to create the LIFE Center at Rutgers Cancer Institute of New Jersey. The LIFE Center brings together a multidisciplinary team of cancer experts to educate healthcare professionals and the women and families they serve about cancer risk, screening and prevention. These experts include medical oncologists, surgeons, genetic counselors, psychologist, social workers and nurse practitioners. We continue to expand our education priorities through two innovative programs for our young generation. BIOCONECT (biology of cancer, on-line education connecting teens) a learning model for science and biology classes on cancer genetics for high schools students and BOLD, Bioconect Oncology Leadership Development created to educate New Jerseyâ€™s youth about careers in cancer research. Through a new partnership with Discovery Education, LIFE and Rutgers Cancer Institute of New Jersey, BIOCONECT, which started at home in New Jersey High Schools, will be available NATIONWIDE late 2015. Discovery Educationâ€™s digital platform will provide 3.5 million educators and 38 million students nationwide access to our BICONECT learning model. Thank you so very much for your generosity and friendship to the Cox Charity Classic and for providing Rutgers Cancer Institute of New Jersey and the LIFE Center the privilege to work for a cancer free world. Sincerely,
Do not let what you cannot do interfere with what you can do. ~John Wooden
Val Skinner LIFE Founder
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Teams Of Distinction With 67 winning foursomes over the past 25 years, we’ve simply outgrown the Winner’s Trophy. Immortalized here are the past champs of the Cox Classic… 2014 NEW JERSEY NATIONAL Andy Brooks, Kevin Epstein, Andrew Schwaeber
2006 (cont.) FIDDLER’S ELBOW MEADOW Grant Hendricks, Mike Racanelli, Rich Racanelli, Joe Roberto
2004 (cont.) FIDDLER’S ELBOW RIVER Mike Breen, Bob Carney, Julie Carney, Mike Marion
2013 NEW JERSEY NATIONAL Bill Bergen, John Moore, Kevin Monaghan, John Kearney
FIDDLER’S ELBOW FOREST Todd Christie, Michael Davis, Stephen Mara, Brian Toolan
FIDDLER’S ELBOW MEADOW Greg Wienboldt, Rudy Agostino, Tony Heaton, Bill Lees
HAWK POINTE Ken Peterson, Bob Schwartz, Jerry Setzer, Phil Zusi
FIDDLER’S ELBOW FOREST John Nesvig, Neil Mulcahy, Steve McKiernan, Toby Byrne
2005 BASKING RIDGE C.C. Morris Eliasoff, John Farugia, Josh Garey, Steve Kalman
STANTON RIDGE Jack Conway, Rob Dicarlo, Ken Fivek
2012 NEW JERSEY NATIONAL Rick Zeien, John Barletta, Mark Mitola and Dan Lynn 2011 NEW JERSEY NATIONAL John Moore, Kevin Monaghan, John Kearney, Bill Bergen 2010 NEW JERSEY NATIONAL Dan Greenspan, Kevin Riordan, Brad Franks, Thomas Lantzounis 2009 NEW JERSEY NATIONAL Rich Marion, John Marion, Bill Marion, Steve Marion, Matt Marion 2008 FIDDLER’S ELBOW RIVER Tom Consol, Mike Kalinak, Bill Stake, Chet Oldakowski FIDDLER’S ELBOW MEADOW Bill Bergen, Tom Bishop, John Kearney, John Moore 2007 ROYCE BROOK GOLF CLUB Chet Oldakowski, Bill Stake, Michael Kalinak, Tom Consol 2006 FIDDLER’S ELBOW RIVER Carl Carlson, Michael Collins, Dick Heptig, Jeff Starr
NEW JERSEY NATIONAL Allen Mendelson, Carl Carlson, Richard Heptig, Joe Walsh FIDDLER’S ELBOW RIVER Thomas Hauck, Patrick Rauchet, Bill Eifert, Jamie Benton FIDDLER’S ELBOW MEADOW Robert Kantor, Bruce Rittenberg, Lou Polonkay, Scott Klatsky FIDDLER’S ELBOW FOREST Rick Bebiasi, Danny Cifelli, Pete Dasaro, Todd Christie 2004 ROYCE BROOK EAST Bill Allen, Warren Dodge, Josh Weingast, Gus DiBiase ROYCE BROOK WEST Dale Shankland, Alvaro Sanz, Sherman Spencer, Ron Kotz NEW JERSEY NATIONAL Doug Roeder, George Otras, John Donnelly, Alex Mironovich
ROYCE BROOK EAST Joe Gallo, Dean DelVecchio, Ron Spears, Tony Leggio 2003 ROYCE BROOK WEST John Kearney, Thom Bishop, John Moore, Kevin Monaghan NEW JERSEY NATIONAL John Donofrio, Michael Donofrio, Fred Gorra, John Mignone FIDDLER’S ELBOW RIVER Ed Brauman, Keith Brauman, Dave Dance, Mike Mancini FIDDLER’S ELBOW MEADOW Bill Cunningham, Gary Helm, Kevin Kelly, Walt Ward FIDDLER’S ELBOW FOREST Jack Frekker, Jon Nesvig, Connie Weaver, Chris Wightman 2002 FIDDLER’S ELBOW MEADOW Mark Nolan, John Fabian, Bob Melvin, Dennis Donnelly
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2002 (cont.) FIDDLER’S ELBOW RIVER Gary Helm, Bill Cunningham, Walt Ward,Randy Cherkas
2000 (cont.) FIDDLER’S ELBOW FOREST Michael King, Toby Price, John Donnelly, Jon Kayser
1997 (cont.) FIDDLER’S ELBOW RIVER Betty Tolerico, Joe Tolerico, Pete Granwehr, John Morales
FIDDLER’S ELBOW FOREST Jim McFarland, Lou Jablonski, Tom Clark, Regina Egea
STANTON RIDGE Jeff Long, Jim Deam, Bob Failing
STANTON RIDGE Ron Furman, Brian Sikorsky, Howard Hambleton, Chris Kenealy
STANTON RIDGE Ian Perrin, Chris Kurtz, Alan Goldin, Lee Albertson
1999 SOMERSET HILLS Jim Bellis, Mike Lupica, Dave Renzulli, Brian Thebault
NEW JERSEY NATIONAL Cathy Constable, Jeff Constable, Ron Furman, Judith Kenny
STANTON RIDGE Ray Dundas, Bill Morningstar, Jed Petrick, Jay Altmeyer
FIDDLER’S ELBOW MEADOW John Nesvig, Neil Mulchahy, Steve McKiernan, Toby Byrne
FIDDLER’S ELBOW MEADOW Jack Griffin, Michael Liu, Larry Travaglia, Roger Clarke
FIDDLER’S ELBOW RIVER Bob Carney, Julie Carney, Mike Marion, Father Tom Hartman
FIDDLER’S ELBOW RIVER Ron Bozak, A. Freedburg, Gerry Helm, Jerry Lewis
2001 FIDDLER’S ELBOW FOREST Cliff Clark, Tim O’Brien, Dave Peacock, Gene Thaw
NEW JERSEY NATIONAL Tom Bishop, Bill Dittman, Kevin Monaghan, John Moore
1996 FIDDLER’S ELBOW MEADOW Jeff Bauer, Bill Donlin, John Gutman, Dan Fleishman FIDDLER’S ELBOW RIVER Lori Davis, Gary Fuller, Jerry Wakin, John Schule 1995 KNOLL COUNTRY CLUB Dave Long, Bob Forbes, Nancy Telliho, George Burnett 1994 CRYSTAL SPRINGS C.C. Tom Evans, Doug Ritter, Kim Hillers, Mark Dowley 1993 ROXITICUS COUNTRY CLUB Mark Syp, Bob Carlin, Russ Terry, Steve Nazaryk
STANTON RIDGE Bob Bruder, Chris Kurtz, Ian Perrin, Alan Goldin
1998 SOMERSET HILLS Steve Witkoff, Bo Dietl, Jeffery Goldberger, David Edelsteine
NEW JERSEY NATIONAL Gary Helm, Michael Jagacki, Phyllis Sullivan, Vince Zuza
FIDDLER’S ELBOW MEADOW Tom Campbell, Chris Czekaj, Allen Aiken, Mark Agostinelli
1992 ROXITICUS COUNTRY CLUB Bob Carney, Mike Marion, John Morales, Bob Schwartz
2000 SOMERSET HILLS Bo Dietl, Steven Witkoff, John Kelly, Neil Clark
FIDDLER’S ELBOW RIVER Harold Morgenstern, Jeff Mahl, Bob Igiel, Lou Koskovocis
1991 ROXITICUS COUNTRY CLUB Mother Nature
STANTON RIDGE John Moore, Thom Bishop, Kevin Monoghan, Tom Kearney
1990 NEWTON COUNTRY CLUB Jim Stanton, Bill Donlin, Steve Block, Chuck Fugger Jim Keplesky, Geoff Russell, Julie Hug, Mike Marion
FIDDLER’S ELBOW MEADOW John Cafaro, Keith Lerch, Bill Blades, Andy Fusco FIDDLER’S ELBOW RIVER Alan Aiken, Christopher Czekaj, Kevin Leslie, Kevin Hanft
1997 FIDDLER’S ELBOW MEADOW David Epstein, Dick White, Bernie Kosar, Mark Gordon
Do not let what you cannot do interfere with what you can do. ~John Wooden
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Haddad & Partners is proud to power CoxCharityClassic.com Congratulations on the
26th Annual Cox Charity Classic We look forward to many more years of collaboration with the Steven A. Cox Foundation
Weâ€™re a Friend of Steve. Asurion proudly supports the Cox Classic and the Rutgers Cancer Institute of New Jersey. To learn more about Asurion, visit www.asurion.com.
Bells and Whistles? Yeah we can do that. Like a Boss, in fact. BUT, its not just knowing how to ring a bell or blow a whistle, its about knowing when. Accountable creative and measurable results; that's what H&P has been doing best since 2006. That and Street Fighter II.
WEB DESIGN & DEVELOPMENT
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Congratulations on 26 Years â€œFriends of Steveâ€?
FormCo is a proud supporter of The Cox Classic and all of those who have bravely fought cancer
www.formco.net Working Together | Helping Others | Creating Solutions
LIKE THE COX CLASSIC, WE STARTED OFF AS A SMALL TEAM WITH A BIG IDEA…
CONGRATULATIONS ON 26 YEARS!!!
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A modest plan for reversing golf’s much discussed decline
By Bob Carney
here’s been a lot of ink lately on golf’s decline. Fortunately, most of this is not real ink. It’s web ink. You can bookmark it, return to Words with Friends, and forget about it. But what publication could survive without a bit of handwringing about the state of our game? Our hand-wringing is genuine ink, but if you like you can curl the top righthand corner of this page, return to Words with Friends, and read it later, perhaps years later when you are cleaning out stuff and asking yourself why would you keep the 26th Journal of the Cox Classic—the 25th maybe, but why the 26th?—and figuring there must have been something you wanted to read here…hmmm. To recap: The sport is in crisis: Play is down, business people
resorts where afterward you can’t get anyone to play golf because they’re all too darn busy. Occasionally someone will agree to a bike ride. So how do we “grow” golf and make it more attractive to “Millennials” (defined here as the kids in your basement you had hoped would have moved out by now)? Here’s how. Assuming you’ve pretty much narrowed your golf participation to the Cox Classic and a practice round with one or more of the Marion brothers—how many of them are there anyway?—we suggest you adopt, adapt or support these game-growing initiatives. The Burning Rules Festival. Borrowing here, of course, from the fabulously popular Burning Man festival, we suggest an annual get-together to burn copies of the Rules
Of all of the activities in the world that should not require rules, golf would be near the top of the list, right up there with sex and weeding. are taking up bicycling as a substitute, Donald Trump’s got into it, and it takes so long to play, the consensus seems to be that that we should play fewer holes to maximize participation. That’s how complex a problem it is. Industry leaders, fearing that golf’s decline might cause you, the average golfer, to purchase fewer $498 drivers (not knowing that you’d never do that anyway) have offered innovative solutions to boost participation. Footgolf. Get Golf Ready. Get Footgolf Ready. Speed Golf. Virtual Golf. Anythingbut-Regular-Golf, First Tee, and a new program for really old golfers called Last Tee. Millions of dollars and hours have been expended on this problem. There are annual conferences about it at golf
of Golf, which now, with their interpretative decisions, fill hundreds of mysterious pages. Yes, you can mark your ball with a daisy. That kind of stuff. Our thinking: Rules confuse golfers, slow everyone down (including the pros, who have to have a rules official tell them whether they can drop their ball here or six inches from here), and don’t matter much anyway. Of all of the activities in the world that should not require rules, golf would be near the top of the list, right up there with sex and weeding. These activities all aspire to unattainable goals, the very striving for which imposes limits more profound than human regulators could ever devise. Want to fluff up your lie? Go for it. Now the pressure’s really on. Ha! See how that works? At the annual conflagration we’d sell T-shirts, too, a revenue stream golf could really use: “My ball moved. You got a problem with that?” or, “I’ll
Do not let what you cannot do interfere with what you can do. ~John Wooden
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I Can give you out of bounds!” or, “Feel Free to Stop Counting.” Play Golf Bob. This is a program I devised several years ago as a substitute for Play Golf America, the industry initiative, which, to my mind, over-reached a tad. Play Golf Bob narrows it down. I wake up, I think, “How can I support the new Play Golf Bob initiative today?” and I go play golf. Use your own name though. Sports Bar Golf. Think of a sports bar in the middle of a field. Remove all walls. Add golf holes. A couple big screen TVs, 18 IPAs and a divorcee bartender who seems to care deeply. This program puts the drinking/golfing
Wear Whatever You Damn Well Please Golf. Because golf is only part sport, the other part fashion show, dress codes are ubiquitous and pushy: “Collared shirts only.” “Hats must be worn forward.” “Shirts shall be tucked.” “No cargo shorts!” “Jackets required!!!” Or, as I saw at one Midwestern course, “No Guns In Dining Room.” Well, we say that If you don’t own faded Nantucket red shorts and a white Izod polo bought during the Nixon administration, that’s okay with us. Wear whatever! (But no guns in the dining room.) Old Golf. Not to be confused with golf for the elderly, a segment that represents 92 per cent
... golf is only part sport, the other part fashion show...
continuum back in balance. I can see the Golf Digest ads now: “Sports Bar Golf: Let’s have another round!” Pre-Score. The pre-score program is simple and a true time-saver. Before your golf round, you determine a score that you will report to the world after, and that’s it. You can’t change it, no matter how many swings you make, how many balls you lose, how many rules you break. Yes, people may be dishonest. Scores could get ridiculously low, forcing courses to add length at extravagant cost. Handicaps could plummet. Over time, however, I think golfers will wise up and report reasonable, believable scores that approximate (on the low side) their performances. Sort of like they do now. Once on the course, no need to nitpick about what you actually shot. Relax, enjoy your day.
of today’s golfers, according to industry trackers. Old Golf is the golf you used to play before it got improved upon. Short holes, only a couple of bunkers, slowish greens not requiring Beta-Blockers to manage, three water hazards total, maximum scores of 8 on the card, and the best hot dogs you ever tasted, which, if you also took a cart, you got for free. Clubhouse about the size of a double-wide. And nobody bragging about how high the Slope is. You play Old Golf with buddies who are no more accomplished than you, who play fair but don’t own a rulebook, who have no idea what a pre-shot routine consists of and who never eat anything described as a wrap. In about 3.5 hours. Back to the future, what?
Bob Carney is a Golf Digest contributing editor and avid golfer. He is participating in his 21st Cox Classic; his wife, Julie, is Do not let what you cannot do interfere with what you can do. ~John Wooden one of the “Original Eight” founders of the Cox Classic.
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Can, I Will is a new campaign from brain cancer survivor and advocate - Kelsey Flanigan. Flanigan’s goal is to bring positive inspiration to female pediatric and young adult “cancer babes” going through treatment by sharing a unique bracelet that gave Flanigan “that extra boost” during her cancer treatments. The bracelet, designed by Brooklyn based jewelry designer Ryan Porter, spells out the phrase “I Can, I Will”. Flanigan viewed it as a sort of talisman while undergoing radiation and chemotherapy, using the bracelet as a reminder of her inner strength.
Flanigan plans to return to her first treatment center, Robert Wood Johnson University Hospital in New Brunswick, NJ, to share the bracelets with young female cancer patients. By sharing her experiences, she hopes to give patients a simple yet powerful reminder they can turn to while enduring seemingly endless bloodwork, chemo and doctors’ visits during the course of their treatment. To donate to the I Can, I Will campaign and boost the morale of young adult cancer babes, please email: firstname.lastname@example.org.
To donate to the “I can, I Will” campaign, please email: email@example.com
It Takes A Village
By Dan Barry
lying into Ireland as night surrendered to dawn, I saw the tapestry of verdant fields below as a neverending golf course, where my errant shots might ping against stone walls and bounce off dozing sheep, yet forever find the fairway that is the Irish countryside. I was either sleep-deprived or golf-obsessed; neither was good.
On this visit, though, I intended to play a round of golf in Ireland, so that I could return to the States and say: I played a round of golf in Ireland. At the first opportunity, I visited a modest but lovely place, the Gort Golf Club, near my mother’s home place in County Galway, to inquire about renting a set of clubs.
Over the years I have visited Ireland many times to test the hospitality of relatives, overindulge at various pubs, and fulfill just about every stereotypical activity of the presumptuous Irish American – except, that is, to play a round or two of golf.
A very helpful young attendant led me into a dusky storage room that contained about a dozen mix-and-match sets of clubs. “Grand,” I said, because I was now talking in Irishspeak. “Now do ye have any lefty clubs?”
I walked out of the club bereft, the luscious greens to my left and right taunting me as I walked to my car. Forget Doonbeg or Lahinch or Royal Portrush; I can’t even play at the Gort Golf Club.
I’d like to golf.
I returned to the seaside village of Kinvara, I was staying, and shared my tragic tale of golf denied to Irish friends who for some reason abide me. Then one of them said: Well, Sean Forde, the veterinarian, is a ciotog. Just stop at his storefront there on Main Street – up the street from Connolly’s pub, diagonally from Tully’s pub – and see if he won’t lend you his set.
Aaah, he said, and extended a right hand to his brother in lefthandedness. Yes.
Yes, he said, his tone suggesting: This Yank is daft. And, I said, I’m a ciotóg.
And the very next day, I was out on the fine course of the Gort Golf Club, proudly carrying the clubs of Sean Forde, the left-handed vet of Kinvara. I suppose I owe him more than a few Titleists, but tech-
A thief and a veterinarian help a Friend of Steve enjoy a memorable round of golf in Ireland.
Although the country is awash with courses, and has produced an inordinate share of world-class golfers, I took up the game only recently (thanks, incidentally, to becoming a Friend of Steve). What’s more, my Irish mother came from a farming family, not a golfing family. If my work-weary grandfather, thin and hard as a blackthorn stick, had come upon the Excalibur of clubs in the fields – a glistening persimmon driver, say, embedded in a bale of hay – he would have extracted the club, raised it high, and then used it to prod his few cows along their way.
This news seemed to startle the attendant, and I could read his mind. A ciotóg, he was thinking. Irish for: lefthanded. He rustled about the room, saying there actually had been a set of lefty clubs at one point. Oh that’s right, he said, aborting the search. That set of lefty clubs was stolen a while back.
My immediate thought was: Well, that narrows the list of suspects considerably. I know we lefties all look the same, Do not let what you cannot do interfere with what you can do. ~John Wooden but still…
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Feeling a bit foolish, I walked into Forde’s veterinary the next day. A lanky, handsome man, he was sitting at his paper-cluttered desk, bags of feed all about him, engrossed in bovine and equine matters. He did not seem eager to be interrupted. I introduced myself, saying I was a friend of Declan Brogan’s. Yes, he said, his tone suggesting: What does this Yank want?
nically they are still in play, pinging off stone walls and caroming off dozing sheep in Galway and Clare, Kerry and Kilkenny, bouncing along the endless and forgiving fairway of Ireland. Dan Barry is a New York Times columnist, Pulitzer Prize-winning author, cancer survivor, and 2008 Cox Classic keynoter. Dan is participating in his 8th Cox Classic.
By David Chmiel
e cherish the chance to honor the memory of Steven A. Cox. We raise money and awareness in the hopes that no more of our golf buddies will leave us too soon.
• Steady Eddie: First off the tee every time, old faithful hits it a respectable 240 yards, right down the middle so that everyone else can pull a hamstring trying to outdrive the others.
But every player in every foursome wants to win, too. So you invite your dear friends and trusted business partners, new or potential clients, secretly hoping that they have conflicts. As you await their RSVPs, you drift into a Shotgun Xanadu where you form a more perfect golf union. This Quixotic search is as challenging as finding the right accountant, a suitable life partner and a monthly cellphone plan that
• Iron Byron: His swing is more repeatable than the primo lines from Caddyshack. Put him in position to go pin-hunting and he’ll get you to within 12 feet of the cup every time. Which comes in handy when you have… • Eagle Eye: She hasn’t missed a 12-footer since Jimmy Carter left office (and she claims that was only because
Mulligans, pencils with erasers, beer and Val Skinner and her band of better-than-we-deserve professionals. Let the games begin! Your Bomber is no bummer, but for every prodigious blast, you spend the wind up gouging three others from the right rough. Steady Eddie is a straight arrow, but can’t hit it out of his shadow. Iron Byron could use a can of Castrol synthetic 10w30 and Eagle Eye just had cataract surgery. We will overcome adversity, only enhancing the legend. So the scramble unfolds like Shakespearean tragicomedy, four acts in plaids and stripes:
Frustration station! Come back birdies, all is forgiven! “We should have bought more Mulligans,” you say. “Sure, that will help us hole more of these bunker shots for birdie. Remember in 2005 when you missed that three-footer?!,” your partner replies. A late birdie pre-empts a cart switch, but five-under after 16 ain’t going to get it done. “Well, as long as we beat the Marions,” you mutter. • “Where’s the bar?” Ahhhh, the safe room, where you shuffle in, figure out how much you owe for the side bets you made during breakfast and recover. You look around the room and realize that 34 other teams are just as sure as you are
It is a day to celebrate Steve and help bring an end to cancer. But you are desperate to win, and will go down swinging in the pursuit of Cox Classic glory. Here’s how the day will unfold.
costs less than $946 all in one fell swoop, but there they are, the team that will deliver to you the holy grail and photo-op bragging rights for the next year:
the caddie read the line wrong). Her vision also comes in handy when some cheatin’ weasels are perpetrating some shenanigans four holes off in the distance. Forewarned is forearmed…
• The Bomber: The forearms on your designated driver makes Popeye chug spinach smoothies. This guy is more flexible than Donald Trump’s moral compass and he wields his 2.5-degree, 48-inch extra-stiff metalwood with the power of Thor. Only other things in his bag? Four wedges, a putter and three raw steaks.
Daydream over. Your original crew got back to you with an emphatic “Hell, yeah!” and indecipherable emojis within five minutes of getting their Cox Classic invite. After all, this is the Steven A. Cox Classic; everyone comes back for this special day. So, you set out to work with what you’ve got and Do not let what you cannot do interfere with what you can do. ~John Wooden put the rest in God’s hands -- with lots of help from copious
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• “Where’s the first tee and what’s the course record?” Fueled by a healthy breakfast, you even drink decaf to avoid jitters with the flat stick. You kill it on the range, where you got an “attaboy” from Val and picked up a surefire tip in the pre-round clinic. We’re going low today, fellas! • “We own this course!” “Par is your friend? Yeah, right…” We’re grippin’ it, rippin’ it and taking no prisoners. Fourunder after five… yeeeehaaaaw! • “Make a putt, willya!?” Next stop on the par train?
that the winners cheated. If only your Eagle Eye hadn’t been playing with an eye patch, you could have nabbed them in the act! But after all, you beat the Marions – and the University of Scranton crew – so life is good! Make it a double! These flights of fancy (or off-the-record tales shared after the raffle last year) are just a small part of what makes this day the one we would never miss. Friendship, loyalty, hope. All the while, Steve watches it unfold every year. He is smiling and thinking, He’s right. You should have made that three-footer. David Chmiel is a Steven A. Cox Foundation trustee and Manager of Members Content at the USGA. He is participating in his 14th Cox Classic.
26th Annual Steven A. Cox Charity Classic Sponsors Presenting Sponsors Celgene Corporation The Hibbert Group New Jersey National Golf Club
Gold Sponsors Asurion Haddad & Partners, LLC ProSys Information Systems
Silver Sponsors Ferriero Engineering, Inc. Genpact Pharmalink
LPGA Clinic Sponsor Tobe Direct
Bronze Sponsors Ace Twill Printing, Adeptus Partners, Bridgetree, FormCo, Inc., Grubman Compton Foundation, inVentiv Health, Stifel, WPLJ Radio, Zaptitude
Marketing Friends and Partners AT&T, Atlantic City Electric, Black Oak Golf Club, Yogi Berra Museum and Learning Center, Bridgestone Golf, Cava Winery & Vineyards, Inc., Cheesecake Factory, Classic Harbor Lines, Cherry Valley Golf Club, Crystal Springs Golf Club, DG3 North America, Inc., Empire Golf Management, Jay and Lyn Ferriero, Great White Shark Enterprises, Hartefeld National, Terry McLain, Metedeconk National Golf Club, Minisceongo Golf Club, Pine Barrens Golf Club, Ridgewood Country Club, Royce Brook Golf Club, Roosmoor Golf Course, Rutgers University Foundation, Rutgers Athletics, Sands Casino Resort - Bethlehem, Sellar Richardson, P.C., Stanton Ridge Golf Club, 3balls.com, Inc., Trump National Golf Club-Bedminster, Do States not let what you Association, cannot do interfere with what youof can do. ~John Wooden Twisted Dune Golf Club, United Golf University Scranton
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The Steven A. Cox Foundation Trustees gratefully acknowledge the following individuals and organizations whose support of the 26th Annual Cox Classic has been invaluable: Robert DiPaola, M.D., Rutgers Cancer Institute of New Jersey Dr. Richard Edwards, Chancellor, Rutgers University-New Brunswick Nevin E. Kessler, President, Rutgers University Foundation Kelsey Flanigan, Brain Cancer Survivor and Advocate Shabbar Danish, MD, Neurosurgeon Val Skinner, Founder, Val Skinner Foundation Brooke Pancake, Kris Tschetter, LPGA Tour Lee Lopez, Brianna Do, Casey Grice, Madeleine Shiels, Annie Park, Symetra Tour Tim Moonan and Family Greg Geissman, Celgene Eric Bergstol, Rudy Virga, Empire Golf Management Sean Toohey, Oliver Filley, Pierre Bohemond: New Jersey National Phil Zusi DJ Haddad, Benoit Dutrevis, Joff Monkton, Cecilia Lizรกrraga, Haddad & Partners Dan Barry, Bob & Julie Carney Sandy Brill, Anthony Colella: Rutgers University Foundation Rutgers Athletics Michele Fisher, Candace Botnick, Joan Russo, Rutgers Cancer Institute of New Jersey Parker Weil, Dave Kaplan, Yogi Berra Museum & Learning Center Sherb Naulty, Steve Block, Paul Sundick, Phil Micari Jun Forrestall, Gene Innocenti, Chuck Russo, Jack Ciamillo, Tom McKelvey, Julie Rygiel Don Dalgauer, Ruth Bogoly, Brent Mills, Courtney McAnuff, Lisa Jensen Maureen Mallon, Ann Romanovsky, Joan Pagliocco, Matt Ferriero, Kit Mungo Susan Stachowski, Bill Hansen, Stephanie Boms, Danielle Patti, Lynn Sexton Celia Ansell, Ursula Cordero, Scott Casin, Melissa Scott, Rob Booth, Byran Iwick, Joe Febonio, Jack Sciabica Ari Edelman, John Kearney, Jack Szigety, Joe Tolerico Christian Peslak, Steve Marion, Donna Marion, William O. Marion
Trustees of the Steven A. Cox Foundation Susan Campbell, David Chmiel, Henry Cox, John Dowd, Mike Faletto, Paul Ferriero, Mike Forrestall, Fred Greenspan, Mike Marion, Tim Omaggio, Rich Szigety, Chris Thedinga,
"We make Marketing work better."
Bridgetree is proud to support the 26th Annual
Cox Charity Classic And
Rutgers Cancer Institute of New Jersey
WPLJ and Fred Greenspan are proud to be part of the 26th Annual
Steven A. Cox Charity Classic
We congratulate our friends at the Steven A. Cox Foundation on their 26th Anniversary and for their continued support for a great cause.
6 East 45th Street 10th Floor New York, NY 10017 Tel 212-758-8050 Fax 212-826-5037 733 Route 35 North Suite A Ocean, NJ 07712 Tel 732-745-8800 Fax 732-663-0090 1998 Hillside Avenue New Hyde Park NY 11040 Tel 516-354-8877 Fax 516-488-1304
In Memory: Steve Cox
first got to know Steve Cox in May of 1989 during an AT&T team building exercise at the Mohonk Mountain House in New Paltz, New York. The team building itself wasn’t all that great: the experience was contentious for many people, at times the facilitators lacked control and focus, and the rain – which limited our outdoor activity – was unrelenting.
I had just met one of the nicest people in the world. I remember we also talked briefly about the discomfort in his lower back. It was innocent enough; we had no idea what lay ahead.
But for me, the event had a silver lining: I got to know Steve.
Not long after Mohonk, tests would reveal a cancerous tumor had formed on Steve’s hipbone. The medical name was Osteosarcoma. The news came as a shock to everyone, including Steve. How could something like this be happening to someone so young and vital and good?
Although I was aware of him, I had never really met or talked with Steve. But we struck up a conversation one night at Mohonk, on one of the large covered porches, watching the rain fall. We covered a lot of ground those two hours: the missteps of the
Steve put aside the inequity and quickly focused his energy on fighting the disease. Over the next 22 months he would undergo intensive chemotherapy treatments and several operations. He was in and out of the hospital. His pain threshold was
facilitators of the team building exercise, the concept of team, Project Miracles (another team building event which Steve had experienced), life at AT&T and within the consumer advertising department, advertising in general, our respective upbringings, our high school and college days, our spouses and families, our goals and aspirations, sports, the New York City Marathon (which we learned we had both run), and fitness in general. I was struck by Steve’s warmth and positive nature. He also had a great sense of humor. His love for his wife and his family was obvious. His perspective on life was so upbeat and well balanced. I walked away from our conversation with a profound feeling that
constantly being tested. In the midst of his battle, Steve came to work in my group on AT&T’s College Market Program. Despite his significant physical challenges, he excelled in the job. His performance was exemplary. As a testimony to his contributions, he was honored with the company’s “Spirit of Communications” award. Steve was an insightful, hard working, and dedicated member of the team. He always strove to be his best and do his best. He cared deeply. It was also remarkable how Steve managed around his obvious physical disability. His personal struggle never got in the way of his performance. He simply wouldn’t let it. He persevered. He
remained strong, focused and positive. His optimism was inspiring.
impact his burden had on others.
I quickly learned that my perceptions of Steve were universally held by a sizable number of people within AT&T and at the advertising agencies with whom he worked. Steve had many friends and acquaintances, who, upon learning of his condition, transformed themselves into an impressive network of support.
My conversations with Steve became a significant part of my life. Despite his own condition, he wanted to talk about me and my family, our work group, and the latest advertising campaigns. He continued to care about the work and the people behind it.
As Steve’s health deteriorated, we used the phone to stay connected. Our conversations always included his words of appreciation for the cards, letters, tapes, faxes, books and other gifts and mementos that poured in from his friends. Although some of these gestures may have had a higher perceived “marquee” value – like letters from President Bush, Jack Nicklaus, a phone call from Karl Nelson (ex-Giant football player and himself a cancer survivor), personal greetings (via videotape) from Bob Ranalli and Merrill Tutton (top AT&T executives), personal notes from Mr. Tutton, and fellow AT&T execs Ken Bertaccini (also a cancer survivor) and Kim Armstrong (head of the organization in which he worked), and a golfa-thon in his honor that raised nearly $3,000 – Steve was touched by every act of kindness on his behalf. He often described the collective demonstration of support as “overwhelming.” Steve also talked about his family often and how fortunate he was to have such a close, caring family and so strong and loving a wife. He knew how remarkable his family was and he spoke of them with pride and love.
As time went on our talks became less frequent but each more valuable. Steve called me one last time on the night of May 1. He said he was saying goodbye to his friends. He said he had come to terms with his condition and was accepting his fate. He was no longer going to fight, that he had given it his best shot – an understatement to be sure. He was now praying to go peacefully. And in his typically unselfish way, he was also praying for a cure so that others could be spared from what he had to endure. There is learning in Steve’s experience: of the need to keep our lives in perspective; of how quickly our fate can change with no apparent reason or logic. Steve spoke of the need to truly live one day at a time and each to its fullest. His message is simple yet profound. I feel privileged to have known Steve. I miss him dearly. I will remember him, and our brief friendship, forever. And I’ll particularly cherish our one spring night at Mohonk, standing on the porch, sipping beer, watching the rain fall, feeling great about ourselves, our families, our work, and our lives ahead of us.
Steve lived with formidable odds of survival and unbearable pain. Through it all he kept focused and positive and strong. He Mike Marion was strengthened by his faith, and he held on to hope.DoHe notalso let what you cannot do interfere with what you can do. ~John Wooden May 16, 1991 held on to his sense of humor – and would use it to soften the
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A Note Of Thanks The original card and personal note from Steve Cox, following the “Golf-A-Thon for Steve Cox,” held on September 21, 1990.
See you at the 27th Annual! October 3, 2016