The Memorial Tournament and Nationwide Childrens Hospital Welcome Nicklaus Childrens Health Care Foundation as Partner

June 1, 2010

Tournament officials announced today an alliance among the Memorial Tournament, Nationwide Children’s Hospital and Nicklaus Children’s Health Care Foundation to create opportunities for funding and awareness. The new alliance will establish Nicklaus Children’s Health Care Foundation as a lead charity of the Memorial Tournament and supporter of the Nationwide Children’s Hospital. This relationship will enable the Memorial to increase its long-standing support and promotion of Nationwide Children’s Hospital and the Memorial Tournament NICU, while combining the strengths of three very powerful organizations, all for the benefit of central Ohio pediatric care.

Driven by a passion to come to the aid of all those impacted by childhood illnesses, the Nicklaus family formed its Foundation almost five years ago. The mission of the Foundation was and remains simple yet powerful: To support programs and activities that advance and enhance the diagnosis, treatment, and prevention of childhood diseases and disorders. In its relatively young history, the Foundation has already raised more than $14 million for support of pediatric health care programs in a five-county area of South Florida. But the goal of the Nicklaus family has been to broaden the reach of the Foundation’s helping hand.

“For the past several years, the Foundation has explored options to expand its impact and further advance the health care needs of children,” says Barbara Nicklaus, chairman of the Foundation’s Board. “Children are not miniature adults. They require specialized care that only certain hospitals and programs can offer. Supporting such pediatric care is a great fit for our Foundation’s vision. We have cherished our long-standing relationship with Nationwide Children’s Hospital and we look forward to exploring how we can grow that relationship and enhance the great work being done by their team.”

The current relationship between the Memorial Tournament and Nationwide Children’s Hospital has existed since the first playing of the Memorial 35 years ago.  Inspired by the Hospital’s long-standing success of providing first-rate care to central Ohio and beyond, the relationship revolves around the selfless dedication of the Women’s Auxiliary Committee for Nationwide Children’s and its volunteers.  This dedication is reflected in the more than 21,000 hours clocked during Tournament week by over 2,600 volunteers of the Women’s Auxiliary.  It is a relationship that has generated more than $9.5 million in charitable giving in recognition of the committee’s efforts and in support of the great work being done year after year at Nationwide Children’s Hospital.

Nationwide Children’s Hospital operates one of the largest and most sophisticated neonatal (newborn) programs in the country. In recognition of the Memorial’s commitment to the hospital, Nationwide Children’s dedicated their newest newborn unit in 2006 as the Memorial Tournament NICU. The unit has a team of more than 35 physicians and 130 nurses and contains a total of 99 beds devoted to neonatal services. Fourteen private rooms, particularly suited to the chronic patient in need of acute care, feature an enhanced family-centered care environment that allows parents to stay overnight at their baby’s bedside.  These patient rooms feature natural light, better sound and light control, and provide better privacy for families to go with the enhanced delivery of the highest quality of neonatal care by interdisciplinary teams.  In addition, three specialty rooms enable parents of twins to stay in one room with both babies, and two rooms will provide the same comfort for parents of triplets or quadruplets.

“When my father created the Memorial Tournament almost 35 years ago, he was motivated by a goal to give back to the community in which he was raised and which shaped him into the person he is today,” said Jack Nicklaus II, general chairman of the Memorial Tournament. “Part of the Memorial’s efforts to give back to the Central Ohio community is its passionate support of Nationwide Children’s Hospital. I can not think of a better way to grow this valued relationship than by leveraging the success and continued mission of the Nicklaus Children’s Health Care Foundation.”

“We’re honored by the support of both the Memorial Tournament, its fans, the volunteers and in particular the Nicklaus family,” said Dr. Steve Allen, CEO, Nationwide Children’s Hospital. “We look forward to this next development in our long-standing relationship and many more decades together. The Columbus community treasures this relationship and takes great pride in the Memorial’s generosity toward Nationwide Children’s Hospital.  This alliance keeps this rich tradition here in Jack and Barbara’s hometown, while offering the opportunity for increased philanthropy from across the nation. On behalf of our patients and their families, we are grateful for this support and investment in our lifesaving mission.”

Nationwide Children’s Hospital is one of the nation’s largest not-for-profit freestanding pediatric health care networks providing wellness, preventive, diagnostic, treatment and rehabilitative care for infants, children, adolescents and adult patients with congenital disease. A medical staff of nearly 1,000 and a hospital staff of 7,200 provide state-of-the-art pediatric care for more than 920,000 patient visits annually. Nationwide Children’s remains true to the original mission since its founding in 1892 of providing care regardless of a family’s ability to pay. No child is turned away.

“There is such commonality and a shared vision between Nationwide Children’s Hospital and our Foundation,” said Jack Nicklaus, Memorial Tournament founder and host, as well as honorary chairman of the Nicklaus Children’s Health Care Foundation’s Board of Directors. “Our family’s passion to help children is what originally led us to create the Nicklaus Children’s Health Care Foundation. Our purpose remains very simple: to help children. This is the mission of Nationwide Children’s Hospital and on behalf of our Foundation and the Memorial Tournament, we are honored to be working together to further that mission. Together, I know we can do more.”

The Memorial Tournament presented by Morgan Stanley is held annually at Muirfield Village Golf Club in Dublin, Ohio, a suburb of Columbus. The Tournament, founded and hosted by Jack Nicklaus, is conducted each year with three goals in mind: to honor the memory of individuals living and deceased who have distinguished themselves in the game of golf; to showcase the world’s best golfers competing on one of the most challenging venues in the world for the enjoyment of spectators; and to benefit charitable organizations in central Ohio. For more information, call 614-889-6700 or visit

About Nationwide Children's Hospital

Named to the Top 10 Honor Roll on U.S. News & World Report’s 2019-20 list of “Best Children’s Hospitals,” Nationwide Children’s Hospital is one of America’s largest not-for-profit freestanding pediatric health care systems providing wellness, preventive, diagnostic, treatment and rehabilitative care for infants, children and adolescents, as well as adult patients with congenital disease. Nationwide Children’s has a staff of more than 13,000 providing state-of-the-art pediatric care during more than 1.5 million patient visits annually. As home to the Department of Pediatrics of The Ohio State University College of Medicine, Nationwide Children’s physicians train the next generation of pediatricians and pediatric specialists. The Abigail Wexner Research Institute at Nationwide Children’s Hospital is one of the Top 10 National Institutes of Health-funded freestanding pediatric research facilities. More information is available at