Every spring, the world’s best golfers gather at the beautiful Augusta National Golf Course in Augusta, Georgia, for The Masters tournament. The winner gets one of Augusta’s famous green jackets, just ask last year’s champion Bubba Watson. Well, with any tradition comes controversy. Augusta National Golf Course has never admitted a woman as a full-fledged member. That is, until now. Former Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice and business executive Darla Moore will be the first two female members of Augusta National.
“This is a joyous occasion as we enthusiastically welcome Secretary Condoleezza Rice and Darla Moore as members of Augusta National Golf Club,” said Augusta National chairman Billy Payne in a statement. ”We are fortunate to consider many qualified candidates for membership at Augusta National. Consideration with regard to any candidate is deliberate, held in strict confidence and always takes place over an extended period of time. The process for Condoleezza and Darla was no different. These accomplished women share our passion for the game of golf and both are well known and respected by our membership. It will be a proud moment when we present Condoleezza and Darla their Green Jackets when the Club opens this fall.”
Augusta has about 300 members, though the exact count is not known or shared with the public. Women–and anyone else–can play Augusta as guests of members. The club did not integrate racially until 1990; it only took them an extra 22 years to let the first woman in.
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