As Bunkers in Baghdad gears up for its annual golf tournament — the Bunkers in Baghdad Open — president and founder Joseph M. Hanna has spent the beginning of summer collecting donations and growing awareness of the organization.
Just before Independence Day, Western New York-based news station WGRZ aired a profile on Bunkers and its mission to provide servicemen and women with golf equipment to pass time during deployment and recover from injuries sustained during the line of duty. Filmed on location in the Bunkers donation storage room in Goldberg Segalla’s Buffalo office, the profile highlighted the organization’s growth since its 2008 creation as well as letters from the Bunkers Buddies program — a part of the organization Joe cites as the most-rewarding piece of every package.
“The students draw pictures, write letters, and color golf balls for us — and we’re able to ship those oversees with the packages,” says Joe during the segment as he sorts through a bin of decorated golf balls. “Very often we hear from our troops, ‘thank you for the golf equipment, we love it. But we really appreciate the cards, letters, and golf balls because they remind us of our children, our neighbors, our cousins, and our nieces and nephews.’”
DRI’s The Voice also featured Bunkers in Baghdad, highlighting the announcement of Delaware North as this year’s Annual Open presenting sponsor. “We’re all grateful for the incredible generosity of Delaware North, which has been a longtime supporter of the men and women of our armed forces, Bunkers in Baghdad, and this tournament,” says Joe. “It is an honor to have the preeminent leader in sports and entertainment venue management step up to take the lead role in our most important fundraising event of the year. We look forward to seeing what we can accomplish together for our troops and vets.”
Joe, along with Bunkers, was also featured in the Spring 2017 issue of Western New York Gentry — a Buffalo-oriented men’s lifestyle magazine. “I’m a born and raised Buffalonian, your run-of-the-mill blue-collar kid from North Buffalo,” says Joe as he talks about his parents’ focus on education growing up. The feature continues on to highlight Joe’s work as Chair of Goldberg Segalla’s Sports and Entertainment Practice Group, as well as his dedication to Bunkers In Baghdad, which shipped its 8-millionth golf ball just before Memorial Day this year.
To learn more about Bunkers in Baghdad, or to donate, go to www.BunkersInBaghdad.com