Our Story



Our Inspiration

In 2008 at the age of 40, Melissa Pittman wasn’t thinking about cancer – busy with an active family, Melissa and her husband, Jay, had become part of the East Lake Woodlands Country Club golf community when they relocated from South Carolina.

Suddenly, Melissa and her family were faced with a shocking diagnosis – an inoperable brain tumor – and her life was forever changed. Initially given just three years to live, Melissa began her journey to survive. With chemo and radiation treatments to keep the tumor from growing, Melissa continued to beat the odds for eight unimaginable years. Early in 2016 the tumor again began to grow and Melissa lost her battle that spring. But her inspiration to find a cure lives on and remains the focus of our foundation.

Melissa’s determination, fighting spirit and the support of many friends and colleagues in the golfing community are the inspiration for Golfers vs. Brain Cancer. Family, friends, golfers of all skill levels – have rallied on behalf of Melissa and so many others who are stricken with brain cancer.

For Melissa, she lived by the motto of: “each day is a present – that is why it’s called the present; yesterday is the past and tomorrow is unknown…but today is my present!”

Our Foundation

Golfers vs. Brain Cancer – Reaching Out, Raising Funds to Find a Cure. “Let’s find a cure” was Melissa’s response to all who asked “What can we do to help?”

Now in its 12th year, Golfers vs. Brain Cancer has raised more than $1,000,000 to support brain cancer research, for that very purpose – to find a cure. To date, these funds have helped support ongoing research and resources to treat brain cancer patients at Moffitt Cancer Center & Johns Hopkins All Children’s in Tampa.

According to national statistics, over 22,000 malignant tumors of the brain or spinal cord were diagnosed in 2016, striking men, women and children without discrimination. Though more targeted treatment programs are being developed and tested, there is much to be done to improve the survival rate and quality of life for brain cancer patients.

Golfers vs. Brain Cancer is a 501(c)3 non-profit corporation which will continue to seek out research initiatives and programs to meet the goal of finding a cure for brain cancer. Over 90% of the funds raised through the Golfers vs. Brain Cancer tournament are donated to the cause.

Here’s where you can make a difference. Please join us on Friday, November 20th for the 2020 benefit tournament at East Lake Woodlands Country Club, which includes a silent auction.

Consider a sponsor-level donation or contribution to the silent auction, bring a foursome and come out for a great day of golf and a great cause.

Help us Fight Brain Cancer.

10 News: A family fights brain cancer with golf