The TASER Foundation for Fallen Officers generated more than $550,000 in gross donations during its fifth annual "Hold'em for Heroes" celebrity tournament weekend held Nov. 19–21.
The weekend's events featured three days of poker tournaments at the Fort McDowell Casino, including a "high roller" event filled with more than 35 celebrities from: the World Series of Poker (WSOP), professional sports teams, television, movies, and music. Many of these same players also participated in the charity's first celebrity golf tournament played at the beautiful WeKoPa Golf Club in Fountain Hills, Arizona.
The returning hosts for the events were the 11-time WSOP Champion, Phil Hellmuth and Country Music Recording Artist, Mark Wills.
During the weekend's activities, local players had the opportunity to golf with celebrities like Richard Karn of "Home Improvement" and play their best poker hands against champions like Phil Hellmuth, Antonio Esfandiari, Layne Flack, and local poker hero Tom Schneider for the chance to win a $10,000 seat in the 2010 World Series of Poker tournament held in Las Vegas, Nevada.
Mark Rubin, a local player, won the event with Jeff Madsen, one of the WSOP celebrity players, taking second.
Kathy Hanrahan, the CEO for the TASER Foundation, commented, "The results achieved for the 2009 "Hold'em for Heroes" event was a great way to end the year. We were encouraged by the level of support achieved in such a tough economy."
"We would like to thank the local community for their continued support of this very worthwhile cause, and our premium corporate sponsors: Fort McDowell Casino, Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Arizona, Hillard Heintze, TASER International, the Poker Players' Alliance, and Hogue Printing Solutions for underwriting the key expenses and making the event possible," added Hanrahan. "A special thank you is also necessary for the men and women of law enforcement who attended the event, and to the very special family members of our fallen Arizona officers. This weekend was to honor these heroes, and to remind them that the TASER Foundation will be here to help law enforcement and its families in their time of need."
To learn more about how you can assist the TASER Foundation in its mission to help these families during their time of need, please visit www.TASERFoundation.org, or call 1-800-978-2737, extension 2012. Every dollar raised makes a difference in their lives, and lets the families know how grateful we are for their sacrifice.