Joe Fonzi to Emcee Academy of Art University Annual Urban Knights Celebrity Golf Classic, Honoring Actor Dennis Haysbert with “Be Artist-Be Athlete” Award

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3rd Annual Urban Knights Celebrity Golf Classic is Monday, September 19, 2011, from 11am–9pm at the Presidio Golf Course

The Wellness and Athletics Foundation at the Academy of Art University will host the 3rd Annual Urban Knights Celebrity Golf Classic Monday, September 19, 2011, from 11 a.m.–9 p.m. at the Presidio Golf Course located at 300 Finley Road. Academy of Art University President Dr. Elisa Stephens; Dr. Jamie Williams, the university’s director of Athletics, a former 49er and Athletics Hall of Fame inductee; and Academy coaches, student-athletes and cheerleaders will welcome Bay Area business leaders, former professional athletes and celebrities. The tournament will also serve as a celebration of the Urban Knights’ impending induction into the National Collegiate Athletics Association (NCAA). The university’s Athletics program was recently granted provisional status by the NCAA Division II Membership Committee; the 2011–12 season will be the university’s final year of membership candidacy. Beginning the 2012–2013 academic year, the university will become the only art institution with official NCAA status. The Urban Knights are members of the 14-school Pacific West Conference.

The Academy of Art University currently sponsors 16 intercollegiate sports, including men’s and women’s basketball, men’s and women’s soccer, baseball, softball, women’s tennis, women’s volleyball, men’s and women’s indoor and outdoor track and field, men’s and women’s golf, and men’s and women’s cross country. The annual Celebrity Golf Classic raises funds for each of the school’s sports teams, all represented by The Wellness and Athletics Foundation at the Academy of Art University.

Following a silent auction and round of golf for guests, Joe Fonzi will emcee the dinner portion of the event, presenting actor Dennis Haysbert with the "Be Artist-Be Athlete" award. Dennis Haysbert was selected as the inaugural recipient of this honor because he epitomizes the balance between the worlds of athletics and the arts. A defensive end on his high-school football team, Haysbert turned down multiple sports scholarships to study at the American Academy of Dramatic Arts. It's not surprising that this commanding actor has since played a striking number of roles, including but not limited to baseball player Pedro Cerrano in the Major League film trilogy, President David Palmer on the television series 24, and Sergeant Major Jonas Blane on the drama series The Unit. Most recently, Haysbert is known as the face of Allstate, personifying the tagline, “You’re in good hands.” For more information about the 2011 Urban Knights Golf Classic, log onto the official event registration site,

About the Academy of Art University

Serving over 18,000 students, the Academy of Art University was established in 1929. It is the largest accredited private school of Art and Design in the country. The student curriculum is kept current with the latest trends in the design and art industry with on-campus and online degrees and certificate programs. These programs include Associate of Arts (AA), Bachelor of Arts (BA), Bachelor of Fine Arts (BFA) for undergraduate degrees, Master of Arts (MA), Master of Fine Arts (MFA) and Master of Architecture (M.Arch) for graduate degrees, and certificate programs for personal enrichment. With 18 majors, the Academy of Art University educates their students by using state-of-the-art technology within the most advanced facilities; placing the Academy, and their students, on the cutting edge of technology.


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