NEWINGTON - Kelser Corp. will host its annual Kelser Charity Challenge Golf Tournament in support of the Hospital for Special Care Center for Cognitive Health at the Indian Hill Country Club in Newington on Tuesday, Sept. 17.
Shotgun start is set for 12:30 p.m.
“Our owner’s brother, who used to own the company, was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s at an early stage, so the Center for Cognitive Health at the hospital has become one of our leading causes so we can promote the cause and create awareness,” said Lisa Carroll, marketing manager at Kelser Corp., an IT consulting firm.
Bruce W. Kelly founded Kelser in 1981 and ran the company until he was diagnosed, then sold it to his brother Barry, who has been Kelser CEO since 2010.
“He loved golf,” said Kelly’s wife, Susan. “His brother is the reason he got into golf. His brother just said to him, ‘Hey, you know I’m going to get you some clubs and we’re going to play’. So it’s kind of cool that he ended up being such a huge lover of golf and now there’s this tournament.”
Bruce, Barry and Lisa came up with this golf tournament as a way to support a cause of the company’s choice.
“This cause is extremely important,” said Devin Kelly, vice president at Kelser and Bruce’s nephew. “We have a lot of people who have been here for over 20 years, I think we have maybe eight employees, so they know the whole story and they knew him before he was diagnosed and before he was even showing signs and symptoms. He is a great guy who is just battling Alzheimer’s and we all think it’s great that we’re using the Cognitive Health Center as a sponsor.”
To honor him, this year Kelser is introducing the Bruce W. Kelly Champions Trophy.
“His wife is very active with us, as well, as friends and family. We talked to her and decided to do a trophy in his name,” said Carroll.
Susan will be introducing the big Stanley Cup-style trophy at the event. Kelser will keep the trophy and engrave each year’s winner on it.
“Every time I turn around there’s somebody new that is impacted by this disease and it doesn’t just affect one person because trying to care for somebody with this disorder is so extensive. It affects the whole family,” said Susan Kelly.
Bruce Kelly is a very special person to those around him. He was described as smart, witty hardworking and willing to take risks.
“It’s a tough disease. It’s a really big challenge the disease itself and it’s really sad when I look over the 11 years since he’s been diagnosed and there really haven’t been any new developments so to be able to donate, raise funds and raise awareness I think is just really critical in trying to find a cure, a cause, a treatment,” said Susan.
Over the past two years alone the Kelser Charity Challenge has raised $43,000 for the Cognitive Center.
“We raised a lot of money over the years and we hope to raise even more money, but the most important thing is getting the word out and letting people know that they have options,” said Devin.
As a way to raise additional funds, last year, Chief Technology Officer Jonathan Stone co-sponsored a helicopter ball drop with northeast Helicopters out of Ellington in which participants could pay for a ball with a number on it that was dropped from the helicopter onto the course and whosever ball landed in or closest to the hole got half the money. This will be done again this year, as well as contests, a silent auction, raffles, complimentary chair massages, lunch and dinner.
There will be caterers on the course offering samples of foods they’ll be donating, such as barbeque and cookies, as well as beers from a brewery.
If you would like to register or sponsor, contact Lisa Carroll at firstname.lastname@example.org or call 860-610-2220 or kelsercorp.com