• Ben Tierney

Dow Great Lakes Bay Invitational sets up to join golf’s sustainability leaderboard

Innovative new event on the LPGA Tour adopts 5-year strategy in partnership with GEO Foundation

MIDLAND, Mich. (May 15, 2019) – In another major step forward for sustainability in and through golf, the Dow Great Lakes Bay Invitational announced today the event is teaming up with GEO Foundation to create one of the most social and environmentally responsible golf tournaments by striving to become the first fully GEO Certified® Tournament on the LPGA Tour. Verified by the Council for Responsible Sport, the event’s new initiative further accelerates Dow’s strategy to positively impact people’s lives through sports.

“The sustainability initiative in partnership with GEO Foundation aligns well with the new Dow ambition and our desire to bring even greater innovation and value into the tournament,” said Chris Chandler, executive director of the Dow Great Lakes Bay Invitational. “By working with our partners at GEO Foundation and the LPGA, we aspire to achieve the highest standards of delivery and integrating resource efficiency, environmental protection and social inclusion. Our vision is that this initiative will inspire and educate operations partners and sponsors to adopt more sustainable practices and help set a benchmark for other golf tournaments and their commercial partners on the LPGA Tour.”

Addressing Sustainability Issues

As part of the GEO Certified® Tournament initiative, the Dow Great Lakes Bay Invitational and the GEO Foundation will work together to address a number of important societal issues over the next five years. Those include:

  • Nature protection and enhancement

  • Sustainable procurement

  • Resource efficiency and climate mitigation

  • Access and equity

  • Advocacy, communications and legacy

“It’s always very exciting when a large event steps forward with clear goals and ambition to deliver on issues that are of tremendous importance to the local community and society at large,” said Jonathan Smith, executive director of GEO Foundation. “We commend the teams at Dow, Octagon, Midland Country Club and the LPGA for their leadership, and look forward to helping drive, recognize and promote the results generated over the coming years.”

Year One Sustainability Activities at the Dow Great Lakes Bay Invitational

Initial activities have been centered on developing a foundation of policies and priority actions that will be built on and innovated around year-on-year. For 2019 they include:

  • Development of 5-year Dow Great Lakes Bay Sustainability Commitment and Action Plan

  • Midland Country Club registration in the OnCourse® sustainability program for golf facility operations, with a commitment to becoming GEO Certified® and delivering continual improvement to foster nature, conserve resources and support the community

  • Sustainable Procurement Code and best practices distributed to all tendering vendors, spanning waste and recycling; transportation; water resource management; energy and power; and catering

  • Partnership with Northwood University, engaging students in data gathering, tracking and recording of actions, including climate impacts

  • Strong emphasis on STEM education and learning across on-site spectator experiences

  • Commitment to tracking, reducing, mitigating and external reporting of Tournament Carbon Footprint

  • Tracking and 3rd party verification against the GEO Certified® Tournament Standard/Criteria

  • Creating an event app to enhance guest experience, streamline communication and reduce paper waste

  • New sustainability webpage at www.DowGLBI.com, and associated communications plan

Spectators onsite will be educated on best practices that will be highlighted throughout the Dow Great Lakes Bay Invitational. That education will begin at the event’s Welcome Center, where each guest walking through the gate will be encouraged to make a commitment while onsite at the tournament to do their best in helping us achieve our goals.

Ticket sales for the Dow Great Lakes Bay Invitational are now available via our website www.DowGLBI.com. To stay up to stay up-to-date on all event information, join the social conversation at www.facebook.com/DowGLBI, www.twitter.com/DowGLBI, and www.instagram.com/dowglbi (@DowGLBI).


About the Dow Great Lakes Bay Invitational

The Dow Great Lakes Bay Invitational (Dow GLBI) is a new official LPGA Tour event that will be held in Michigan’s Great Lakes Bay Region July 15-20, 2019 at Midland Country Club. The Dow GLBI will offer a format unlike any other event on the LPGA Tour. The 72-hole, stroke-play tournament will feature 72 two-player teams competing in both foursomes and four-ball with a $2 million purse. The week-long event will feature more than golf – Eat Great, a two-day food festival featuring restaurants and breweries throughout the Great Lakes Bay Region, an official LPGA Tour Pro-Am Tournament, STEM in Sports youth related programming and leadership events.

The mission of the Dow GLBI is to accelerate the efforts of the Great Lakes Bay Region and Dow’s strategy by building a world class LPGA Tour event that positively impacts people’s lives and enriches the community.

Follow @DowGLBI on Instagram, Facebook and Twitter or online at www.DowGLBI.com.

About Midland Country Club Midland Country Club has maintained a standard of excellence through its heritage since its founding in 1928. The Club was established to provide golf and other recreational and social activities for its members—which continues today! Located in the center of Midland, Michigan, the Club provides beautiful scenery, superb facilities and top quality service. Midland Country Club is thankful for each of its more than 750 members and the community for continuing to support the Club and is excited to host The Dow Great Lakes Bay Invitational! Learn more about Midland Country Club by visiting www.midlandcc.net.

About GEO Foundation

GEO Foundation is the international not-for-profit dedicated to advancing sustainability in and through golf. Its goal is to work collaboratively to help the sport embrace environmental and social issues and become widely acclaimed for its role in fostering nature, conserving resources and building healthy communities. GEO assures the OnCourse® programmes for grassroots golf facilities, new developments and tournaments, each of which can lead to the internationally accredited, endorsed and independently verified GEO Certified® label. Learn more by visiting www.sustainable.golf.

About the LPGA

The LPGA is the world’s leading professional golf organization for women. Founded in 1950 and headquartered in Daytona Beach, Fla., the association celebrates a diverse and storied membership with more than 2,300 members representing more than 30 countries. With a vision to inspire, empower, educate and entertain by showcasing the very best of women’s golf, LPGA Tour Professionals compete

across the globe, while the Symetra Tour, the official development and qualifying tour of the LPGA, consistently produces a pipeline of talent ready for the world stage. Additionally, LPGA Teaching and Club Professionals directly impact the game through teaching, coaching and management.

The LPGA demonstrates its dedication to the development of the game through The LPGA Foundation. Since 1991, this charitable organization has been committed to empowering and supporting girls and women through developmental, humanitarian and golf community initiatives, including LPGA*USGA Girls Golf, the LPGA Women’s Network and the LPGA Amateur Golf Association.

Follow the LPGA on its television home, Golf Channel, and on the web via www.LPGA.com. Join the social conversation at www.facebook.com/lpga, www.twitter.com/lpga and www.youtube.com/lpgavideo, and on Instagram at @lpga_tour.

Media Contacts

Kylie Case, Marketing & Communications Manager, Octagon

kylie.case@octagon.com, +1 616-340-3209

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