Winter 2017

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PATRONS | Winter 2017 18 A View from the Green Former mentor's recommendation proves to be a hole in one for Golf Tournament's longtime chair. B ack in 1987, as a promising young banking executive at Inglewood-based Imperial Bancorp, Don Douthwright rarely played golf. But his boss, Imperial's co- founder, the late George Graziadio, was an avid golfer and a firm believer that the golf course was as useful as the boardroom for making connections and striking deals. Among Graziadio's other passions was supporting the advancement of the burgeoning local hospital, Torrance Memorial Medical Center. at year, the noted philanthropist founded the Torrance Memorial Golf Tournament as a way to raise funds. Imperial's client, Rolling Hills Country Club, would host the tournament. e bank donated $5,000 and appointed Al Avoian as the tournament's first chair. "He [Graziadio] said to me, 'You go out and raise the rest,'" says Douthwright, Imperial's regional vice president at the time. Fortunately for Douthwright, many of his clients already played golf. "I ended up signing up about 20 to 30 golfers to participate from my client base. After just a few years, we began selling out and have sold out every year since." Following Graziadio's strong recommendation, he also took up the game. He continues, "Back in those days Craig Leach [now Torrance Memorial's president and CEO] was vice president of Finance at Torrance Memorial. We are the only two who have played in all of the tournaments." Douthwright took the helm as the Golf Tournament's second chair nine years ago. Since then, the tournament's nearly 20-member committee has worked to add sponsors to "everything we could name." rough the years, local car dealerships including Martin Chevrolet (a sponsor since the tournament's inception), Audi Pacific, Porsche South Bay, Land Rover South Bay, Scott Robinson Honda and South Bay Lexus have signed up as Hole-in-One Sponsors. (To date, there have been two Hole-in-One car winners.) WRITTEN BY COLLEEN FARRELL PHOTOGRAPHED BY SHANE O'DONNELL

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