For Immediate Release
CONTACT: Joe Boczek, 304.288.5924
Fairmont, WV — Global country music superstar, and West Virginia native, Brad Paisley will be the keynote speaker at the second annual GameChanger Golf Classic Dinner Wednesday, June 1, at the world-famous Greenbrier Resort in White Sulphur Springs.
The MVB Bank – GameChanger Golf Classic and dinner along with a companion ‘Power of Prevention Luncheon’ is a two-day affair to raise needed funding to implement a cutting-edge opioid and substance misuse prevention education program in West Virginia schools beginning this fall. The program was developed through an agreement with Hazelden-Betty Ford Foundation and in consultation with ‘Help and Hope WV’ and the state’s six prevention lead organizations.
Sponsored by MVB Bank, the two-day event begins with a reception at 6:00 pm on June 1 with the dinner highlighted by Paisley’s appearance scheduled to begin at 7:00 pm. The 18-hole Golf Scramble featuring celebrity captains from the business and sports world begins with a shotgun start on the Greenbrier’s picturesque Old White course at 9:00 am. A golfer’s breakfast precedes the event at 7:30 am with the ‘Power of Prevention Luncheon’ starting at 11:00 a.m.
Paisley, a native of Glen Dale in Marshall County, has earned his place in country music history as one of the genre’s most talented and decorated male solo artists. Over the past 22 years, his songwriting and unmatched showmanship have won him numerous awards, including three GRAMMYs, two American Music Awards, 15 Academy of Country Music Awards and 14 Country Music Association Awards including a highly coveted Entertainer of the Year honor and recognition as the most successful CMA Award host alongside Carrie Underwood for 11 consecutive years.
With the opioid and substance misuse problem continuing to grow in West Virginia and throughout the nation, Paisley says “this is a deadly problem, and I am honored to highlight the tremendous work of GameChanger.”
In addition to Paisley’s keynote remarks, West Virginia Governor Jim Justice, who serves as Head Coach of GameChanger and under whose leadership the initiative has grown exponentially, will also deliver remarks as will West Virginia’s United States Senators Joe Manchin and Shelley Moore Capito, who both endorse GameChanger.
“When I was governor, I was fortunate to get to know Brad and it’s no surprise to me he’s willing to give back to our great state of West Virginia by working with GameChanger,” Manchin says. “Prevention and education are key to addressing the drug epidemic facing our nation, and GameChanger’s collaboration with the Hazelden-Betty Ford Foundation and their recent collaboration with the DEA offers the kind of cutting-edge approach that gives West Virginia the best opportunity to succeed. West Virginia’s youth will benefit from this evidenced-based approach and I’m proud to support GameChanger’s incredible work in the Mountain State.”
Capito, who ironically is from Paisley’s hometown of Glen Dale in Marshall County, says she is looking forward to participating in such a worthwhile event and took time to laud Justice’s leadership in such an important initiative as GameChanger.
“The Opioid and Substance Misuse epidemic is hurting West Virginia families and communities as well as families and communities across the nation and I am so pleased to see such a cutting-edge program as GameChanger meeting this issue head on,” she says. “I also applaud Governor Justice for his vision in heading up such an effort. I am impressed with the partnerships formed with the Hazelden-Betty Ford Foundation and the DEA and I look forward to providing any help to ensure its success.”
Joe Boczek, who founded GameChanger along with WVSSAC Executive Director Bernie Dolan and MVB Financial Corporation President Don Robinson and serves as its Executive Director, says, “Brad and his team went to unbelievable lengths schedule-wise to make his appearance possible. This is one of the top entertainers in our history and what he did to make this work shows the kind of man he is and the kind of West Virginian he is.”
GameChanger is a cooperative effort between the Governor’s Office, the West Virginia Secondary School Activities Commission (WVSSAC), the West Virginia Department of Health and Human Resources, the West Virginia Department of Education, the West Virginia Office of Drug Control Policy, the West Virginia Drug Intervention Institute, ‘Help and Hope WV’ and the state’s six prevention lead organizations.
A student-powered prevention movement, GameChanger connects West Virginia students and the educators who care about them with the Hazelden-Betty Ford Foundation to build school environments which prevent student opioid and other drug use before it starts. GameChanger achieves this objective by working directly with schools to implement, monitor and sustain the Hazelden-Betty Foundation’s student-peer leadership programs, found by research to help children make healthy choices about alcohol, opioids, and all other drugs. As a youth-led prevention, positive development, and community enhancement initiative, GameChanger programming is designed to educate, support, and empower young West Virginians to live healthy, drug free lifestyles while preparing to be our leaders of tomorrow.