By Ashley Chambers Chatting with golf-lover Reyhan Griffin, 14, one can notice that the young man is wise beyond his years. A 4.0 student from San Francisco’s Bayview district, he was the grand prizewinner of Wells Fargo’s Succeeding Together video essay contest, playing in the 2013 Wells Fargo Championship Pro-Am last week alongside Rickie Fowler, PGA Tour golfer and Wells Fargo Championship 2012 winner. Griffin, along with three first place winners, won a trip to Charlotte, North Carolina to attend the PGA Tour event held on May 1. Created specifically for teenage participants in The First Tee, a national youth development organization that introduces young people to the game of golf, the contest asked teens to create videos detailing how golf and the principles of The First Tee have positively impacted their lives. The First Tee has impacted the lives of more than 6.5 million young people across the nation since 1997. “Golf has taught me a lot of things,” said Griffin in his winning video, “but most important of all, I think I’ve learned what it means to live with integrity. “In golf I’m my own judge, I’m the official. Just like in life, it took me to make good decisions, and I want to make those good decisions, even when no one is watching. That’s integrity, that’s character.” Griffin, a participant of The First Tee of San Francisco, played 18 holes with Fowler at the tournament, who he describes as “fun and laidback.” “I knew this was going to be a once in a lifetime moment that I would never forget,” he said. At just 14-years old, his love for the game of golf is anything but premature. He picked up his first club at two years old and has been playing for over seven years with The First Tee. No doubt a golf pro in the making, Griffin’s confidence and persevering spirit shine through his bright smile as he prepares for his next strike, golf club in hand. “Golf gives my life focus and direction. I realize how much balance I need to put into school and golf, and that’s a very good lesson to learn at a young age so I can get prepared for life,” Griffin said. “It can teach you life skills; one is perseverance because you have to endure shots that you don’t like. If you get angry, you wont get any better on the golf course,” he said. For more information on Wells Fargo’s Succeeding Together contest and to view Griffin’s video, visit www.succeedingtogether.wellsfargobank.com.
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