Goldberg Segalla’s Joseph M. Hanna Featured for Serving Troops through Charity He Founded
Joseph M. Hanna — chair of Goldberg Segalla’s Retail and Hospitality, and Sports and Entertainment practice groups — is profiled in a new video by the University at Buffalo in which he discusses the nonprofit he founded that serves U.S. soldiers and veterans around the world.
“I take great pride in helping others and trying to give back,” said Hanna in the UB “True Blue” feature. “I founded a charity called Bunkers in Baghdad” which collects and ships golf equipment to members of the U.S. military, wounded warriors, and veterans.
Hanna — a 2002 and 2005 graduate of UB and the UB School of Law, respectively — said he was searching for a way to help “our brave men and women” when he came up with the idea to create Bunkers in Bagdad. Since 2008, some 13 million golf balls and 1 million clubs, as well as golf nets and other equipment, have been sent to U.S. troops in all 50 states and 75 countries.
An especially satisfying component of the nonprofit, Hanna said, is its Bunkers Buddies program, which instills in children the importance of giving back and helping others. As part of the program, students from 1,500 schools nationwide color golf balls, draw pictures and write letters to the troops.
Hanna regularly receives letters from soldiers expressing their gratitude to Bunkers in Bagdad. The donations, the soldiers say, lets them know they are not forgotten and reminds them of how meaningful their service is. Those letters and other items sent by the troops in appreciation are “the little things that keep us going,” said Hanna.
“Passionate golfers with the students involved, I just knew that it was a great combination. But I never thought it would be 13 million golf balls and one million golf clubs. It means the world to me.”