RALEIGH, N.C., Nov. 10, 2015 – Old Chatham Golf Club has announced that starting in 2016, it will rename its annual fall invitational golf tournament the Paul J. Rizzo Invitational, to be known informally as The Rizzo, honoring the first and only chairman of the club. Old Chatham seeks to recognize Rizzo’s outstanding leadership, distinguished business career, and his embodiment of the club’s values of respect for the game of golf and the camaraderie it creates.
Honoring Rizzo also honors the people, practices and traditions that combine to create a culture that everyone is proud to belong to at Old Chatham. Rizzo was an early advocate of this culture and representative of what it means to be an Old Chatham member – a person with a passion for golf, family and community. Old Chatham members are known to share a love of the great game of golf, while being good citizens and distinguished business leaders in their fields.
In 1999, Rizzo joined with other influential business and political leaders (including Old Chatham founding board members Jim Hyler, Howard Lee, James Maynard and Frank Daniels) from around North Carolina to establish a world class, golf-only club, with the charm and character of classic courses. They sought and found the perfect spot on which to build their dream, a location central to Raleigh, Durham and Chapel Hill. These visionary leaders purchased 400 acres of rolling hills rich in native pines and oaks, nestled just minutes from the I-40 corridor and Research Triangle Park, yet tucked away from the region’s rapid growth.
Rizzo was instrumental in working with leading golf course architect Rees Jones to design the Triangle’s No. 1-ranked course, and in securing key staff members from choice clubs around the country. The result is a true golf sanctuary that continues to enthrall, with the Club’s retreat-like atmosphere where successful people come to unwind, relax and play.
Rizzo currently serves as chairman emeritus of Franklin Street Partners, a private investment management firm and trust company in Chapel Hill, North Carolina. He retired from his position as vice chairman of the board of IBM in 1994. Rizzo is the former dean of the Kenan-Flagler Business School at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and a former member of the University of North Carolina Board of Governors. He is also a past director of Johnson & Johnson, McGraw-Hill Education, Morgan Stanley, Maersk, Inc., and Cox Enterprises.
Maintaining a longtime passion for the game, Rizzo is a member of Augusta National Golf Club. Because of Rizzo’s influence on the development of Old Chatham, many guests have remarked on the similarities between the feel of the Club and Augusta.