Focused on the Future

May 3, 2021

Registration is now open for the 2021 Bill Warner Sr. Memorial Charity Golf Classic benefiting Vision To Learn. The Golf Classic will be held Monday, September 27, 2021 at both Wakonda Club and Des Moines Golf & Country Club to accommodate the growing number of participants. “We strive to make it a first-class event, worthy of the more than 200 golfers and the additional reception guests,” said Therese Wielage, vice president of the Merchants Bonding Company Foundation.

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The 2021 Golf Classic will raise money for the Vision To Learn program, a partnership of Variety - the Children’s Charity of Iowa and United Way of Central Iowa. Funds raised will go toward expanding efforts of bringing eye care services and glasses directly to students who would not otherwise receive quality vision care.

"If there's one easy way to impact a student's learning, it's to put glasses on those who need them," says Diane Gladson, health services supervisor at Des Moines Public Schools (DMPS).

In the past five years, Des Moines Public Schools has coordinated over 5,000 eye exams and 4,000 pairs of glasses to students through the Vision To Learn Program. Gladson says it's been an amazing partnership as the program removes many of the obstacles that keep DMPS students from getting the vision care they need. And the impact on students' learning is significant. Research shows that once vision needs are met, academics go up an average of 8%.

The biennial Golf Classic began in 2010 and in the five tournaments since, has raised more than $600,000 for Iowa charities. It began in memory of Bill Warner Sr., past president and chairman of Merchants Bonding Company and known leader in the surety industry. Surety professionals from across the U.S. travel to Des Moines and join local golfers in supporting our community. "We are thrilled with the support we have received from so many people for our efforts to support our community and celebrate Bill Sr.'s passion for life," said President Larry Taylor.

To participate in the 2021 Bill Warner Sr. Memorial Charity Golf Classic or to make a donation visit