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Honda Classic, You Made Shaun’s Day

Nothing is better than being asked to volunteer at The Honda Classic when you love golf! In August of 2021, the PGA TOUR visited The Els Center of Excellence campus for a feature story on Ernie Els who had received the Payne Stewart Award in 2015.  The Els for Autism team introduced several families to the TOUR staff, one of whom was Shaun Deason, a devoted and enthusiastic participant of the Foundation’s Adult Services programs. Shaun is a big golf fan and had called upon his experience at a previous Honda Classic where he learned golf skills under the guidance of Ernie Els at the Ernie Els #GameON Autism® Golf Clinic offered to individuals with autism spectrum disorder and other developmental disabilities. Shaun spoke highly of his experience and advocated for himself about his desire to go back to The Honda Classic. Shaun is a man of big dreams, and he explained to the TOUR producers his desire to hang out with some of the golf professionals at The Honda Classic “someday”.

In February, that is exactly what happened. Shaun was one of 1,300 volunteers at The Honda Classic and had several jobs including replenishing water bottles on the field.  To make the day even more special, Shaun had the opportunity alongside Volunteer Chairman, Jim Coleman, to interview The Honda Classic player, Joshua Creel, from Cheyenne, WY.  Shaun got to learn some personal things about Joshua including his favorite dessert.  When asked what his favorite part of volunteering was, Shaun replied, “All of it.” He cannot wait to volunteer next year.

To see Shaun in action as a Honda Classic volunteer, visit