Artist Vincent Ballentine Selected to Help Honor Greensboro Six; Unveils Concept for Wyndham Rewards-Commissioned Mural

Artist Vincent Ballentine Selected to Help Honor Greensboro Six; Unveils Concept for Wyndham Rewards-Commissioned Mural

GREENSBORO, N.C. – Following a nation-wide search that saw more than 50 submissions from artists coast-to-coast, Wyndham Rewards®, in collaboration with the City of Greensboro and First Tee–Central Carolina, today announced artist Vincent Ballentine has been selected to design and install a commemorative mural honoring civil rights pioneers, The Greensboro Six, at historic Gillespie Golf Course in Greensboro, N.C.

Wyndham Rewards introduced Vincent to the community at a press conference at Gillespie and shared an early rendering of his concept for the mural, honoring The Greensboro Six’s impact while celebrating Gillespie’s continued significance to the community through the work of First Tee. Ballentine’s vision and work will formally be unveiled during a special celebration at Gillespie on August 5, ahead of the PGA TOUR’s 85th annual Wyndham Championship.
Vincent Ballentine

“This mural is a special reminder of our tremendous history in Greensboro, and the impact The Greensboro Six had on the sport of golf and beyond. Vincent’s design captures our vision of bringing the community together through the power of golf and will serve as an everyday reminder of our storied past—and because of that—our beautiful future.”
– Ryan Wilson, CEO, First Tee – Central Carolina

“The Gillespie mural honors courageous men who overcame deep-rooted racial challenges to inspire incredible change. My hope is that the mural sparks meaningful conversations among younger generations about our history and the importance of inclusivity while establishing a permanent fixture paying homage to the Greensboro Six.”
– Vincent Ballentine
Gillespie Mural Rendering

Illustrating History, Inspiring Generations:

Brooklyn-based Vincent Ballentine is a multi-disciplined visual artist with a degree in film and education from the University of the Arts in Philadelphia and continued study in film at Cleveland Institute of Art. His work ranges from digital illustration and animation, to large-scale murals and street art and has been commissioned by the likes of NCAA, MTV and BET, among others.

With a heartfelt passion for storytelling through art and a desire to inspire generational connectivity and inclusivity, Ballentine was chosen from a pool of more than 50 accomplished artists nationwide to tell the story of The Greensboro Six. His interpretation of history details the Civil Rights heroes as they walk through the doors of the Gate City, a nickname for the city of Greensboro, and ushers in a new day for golf and the world we live in today. The image is complemented with nods to the continued significance Gillespie plays in the community today, particularly through the work of the First Tee.

The Legacy of The Greensboro Six:
In 1955, one week after Rosa Parks was arrested for refusing to give up her seat on a Montgomery bus, six Black men led by Dr. George Simkins started a local movement of their own by defiantly playing a round at the whites-only Gillespie Golf Course. They were later arrested, convicted of trespassing and spent 15 days in jail. Seven years and numerous court cases later, their actions led to Gillespie desegregating and later, seeing The Greater Greensboro Open (now the Wyndham Championship) become the first PGA TOUR event in the South to welcome a Black player (Charlie Sifford).

Today, Gillespie is home to First Tee – Central Carolina, a national youth-development program using the game of golf to create life-changing opportunities for local youth on and off the course. It also has the distinction of being the first course in North Carolina to offer PGA HOPE (Helping Our Patriots Everywhere), a national program leveraging golf to enhance the wellbeing of active-duty military and veterans and is one of the only courses in the Triad catering to players with spinal injuries and disabilities through adaptive equipment and free programs.

To learn more about the Greensboro Six Mural Project at Gillespie Golf Course, visit FirstTeeCentralCarolina.org/Mural-Project.

About The City of Greensboro:
Built around the core values of respect, inclusiveness, safety, innovation and sustainability, the mission of the City of Greensboro is to shape an inclusive future for equitable economic opportunity and sustainable, safe neighborhoods through resident focused services and programs. The Greensboro Parks and Recreation Department exists to provide professional and diverse leisure opportunities through inclusive programs, facilities, parks, and open space, ensuring that Greensboro is a desirable place to work, live, and play. Learn more at Greensboro-NC.gov.

About First Tee Central Carolina:
First Tee – Central Carolina is a youth development organization that enables kids to build the strength of character that empowers them through a lifetime of new challenges. Using golf and life skills as our tools, we provide kids opportunities on and off the course they may never have otherwise. We are active throughout the Triad region, and specifically focused on serving the East Greensboro and East Winston-Salem communities. Learn more at FirstTeeCentralCarolina.org.

About The Wyndham Championship:
Contested annually on the Donald Ross-designed course at Sedgefield Country Club in Greensboro, N.C., the Wyndham Championship was founded in 1938 and is the seventh-oldest event on the PGA TOUR, excluding the Majors. The tournament thanks title sponsor Wyndham Rewards and presenting sponsor Truist for their continued support. Additional tournament information is available at WyndhamChampionship.com and the tournament’s social media channels (@WyndhamChamp) on Facebook, X, Instagram and LinkedIn pages.

About Wyndham Rewards:
Proud title sponsor of the Wyndham Championship, Wyndham Rewards® is the blue thread tying together some of the world’s largest and most well-known travel companies and brands: Wyndham Hotels & Resorts, the world’s largest hotel franchising company and Club Wyndham®, the flagship vacation ownership brand of Travel + Leisure Co. Recognized as the #1 hotel rewards program by both U.S. News and World Report and USA Today, members—approximately 108 million enrolled around the world—earn a guaranteed 1,000 points with every qualified stay and can redeem for free nights starting at just 7,500 points. With more than 60,000 hotels, vacation club resorts and vacation rentals globally, no other hotel rewards program is more generous or offers more places to stay. Join for free at WyndhamRewards.com.