About

Meet the Professional Consultant Behind Golf for Cause®

Debbie

Debbie Waitkus

President and Founder of Golf for Cause®

Debbie Waitkus, a former mortgage banker president, found the ideal outlet for her business acumen on the golf course. A speaker, author, and consultant who founded Golf for Cause in 2000 in an effort to empower businesswomen through golf (and to shed her corporate business attire—nylons!), Debbie innovatively helps organizations marry golf with their strategic objectives, or as she would say, "Turn Golf Into Gold®!"

Debbie is the first to say that golf has enriched her life personally and professionally. She has had the unique experience to work closely for ten years with LPGA co-founder and World Golf Hall of Fame member, Marilynn Smith. Marilynn was denied financial aid as a girl to compete in intercollegiate golf tournaments, which was the catalyst for creating the Marilynn Smith Scholarship Fund.

Honoring Her Legacy

Debbie serves as tournament director for the Marilynn Smith Scholarship Pro-Am, which benefits the fund. Administered by the LPGA Foundation, more than $1,000,000 in scholarships has been awarded to young women to attend college.

 

 

LPGA Co-Founders Marilynn
Smith and Shirley Spork

LPGA Co-Founders Marilynn Smith & Shirley Spork

Past President of Women in the Golf Industry

Debbie was a co-founder of the National Women's Golf Alliance (2012-2017), which united three highly respected women’s golf organizations—the EWGA (now the LPGA Women’s Network), Jan Bel Jan Golf Course Design, and Golf for Cause, LLC. The NWGA’s mission was to increase the number of women playing golf and engagement levels of existing women golfers.

Using their combined years of expertise, data, and observation regarding what women golfers want, need, and expect for an enhanced playing experience, the NWGA developed and implemented an evaluation, certification, and promotion program with a base of standards and best practices to help golf facilities attract more women golfers and generate more revenue.

As a Speaker

She skillfully weaves golf stories into lessons ranging from business and personal development to player development. New, aspiring, and hesitant golfers attest that Debbie demystifies golf and rolls out an oversized welcome mat. A latecomer to golf (Debbie learned while pregnant with her first child!), she hasn’t forgotten what it feels like to be the newbie.

Star1

Recognized by the Arizona Golf Association

As a champion of golf and the YWCA as a sports leader, Debbie has collaborated with corporations and not-for-profit organizations in successfully developing and executing charitable giving and outreach plans that have resulted in raising more than $3 million.

The second edition of her book, Get Your Golf On – Your Guide for Getting in the Game, is an easy read filled with information to build confidence and knowledge of what golf is all about. It definitely helps the new-to-golf reader get on the "radar screen" of colleagues and bosses. The book is available on Amazon along with the EWGA Foundation book Teeing Up for Success, in which Debbie is a contributing author. 

Fun Facts

  • Debbie’s favorite golf partner and caddie – her husband Jack, President of Video West, Inc.
  • High School – Nichols School, Buffalo, New York. Debbie earned recognition in the yearbook for Highway Menace. Today her car sports a “Women Driver” decal.
  • Once upon a time, Debbie taught waterskiing!
  • Debbie has two amazing children and two four-legged children, who sometimes amaze her for not the right reasons!
  • She discovered two things on a Golf and Music Tour to Ireland: Her favorite golf course in the world, Old Head, and a love of singing—Karaoke anyone?

Honors and Recognition

  • Arizona Golf Association – Champion of Golf
  • National Women's Golf Alliance – Co-Founder
  • Get Your Golf On! – Author
  • Marilynn Smith Scholarship Pro-Am – Tournament Director
  • Teeing Up for Success – Contributing Author
  • The First Tee of Phoenix – Board of Directors
  • Women in the Golf Industry – Treasurer, Past President
  • World Golf Foundation – Women's Committee
  • Golfweek Magazine – Panelist
  • YWCA – Sports Leader
  • University of Arizona – Entrepreneurial Leadership

Turn Golf Into Gold®!

Clients:

AWLA – Arizona Women Lawyers Association

AZ CREW – Arizona Commercial Real Estate Women

BOMA

Camelback Wealth Consultants

CBIZ

DMB, Inc.

Eide Bailly

Empire West Title Agency

Fairmont Scottsdale Princess

First Western Trust

Hispanic Women's Corporation

HMSHost

Jaburg/Wilk

LPGA

MBA Women International

Mesa Hohokam Foundation

Microsoft

National Bank of Arizona

NAWIC – National Association of Women in Construction

Robert W. Baird & Co.

Safeway

The Hartford

Vanguard

Wells Fargo

Women in Science and Engineering (WISE)