Chubb Classic presented by SERVPRO

Friday, April 16, 2021

Naples, Florida, USA

Tiburón Golf Club

Kirk Triplett

Quick Quotes

Q. Can we get a comment about your round today?

KIRK TRIPLETT: Well, it kind of jump started in the middle there on 8 and 9. I made a birdie on 8 and then hit it fairly close for an eagle on No. 9. Turned a kind of sleepy round into a 3- or 4-under round, and then I protected it pretty good on the back nine, made a couple nice pars. Would have liked to birdie 18, but got it in that waste bunker off the tee and didn't hit as good a shot as I would like.

It's an interesting course. You play it, played it in the pro-am, and I thought the scoring would be good, and then the first couple holes you see where the pins are and you realize the officials thought the scoring would be good, too, so they made it challenging. And you still have guys who shoot good scores on a day like that, but maybe not quite as many. Probably a lot of 2- and 3-unders today.

Q. Changing the subject, how is your community project going? I say the Black Lives Matter. How is that going?

KIRK TRIPLETT: Well, I put that sticker on my bag last summer right as we were coming out of the pandemic. My youngest son is African-American and I wanted to poke the golf world a little bit or at least say, hey, there's people in the golf world that are listening to what's going on. Towards the end of the year I got involved with a group called Dedication to Community. What they are is it's founded by a man named Quentin Williams. He was a football player in college at Boston College, and he came out and became a law enforcement officer, was with the FBI, did training, then went on to work for the NFL and worked on the player conduct policy.

His labor of love has always been working with communities and law enforcement and trying to build better relationships between the law enforcement and the communities that they serve.

So I got a phone call from a member of their board, and he said, hey, we see you're looking for something to talk about. I spent some time with them and I did the training and my family did the training. I think it's a really neat thing that they're doing. They have a new sort of athlete ambassador program where they're trying to get guys from different sports involved. They're very heavy in football right now. They have a partnership with the Miami Heat and they have a partnership with Joe Gibbs Racing, just where they make the communities aware of this training, and they do a lot of law enforcement training, and they bring in community leaders and they train businesses and they train organizations.

It's really just in the art of relationships, right, how to listen to each other and how to see each other as people instead of your side, my side. When you look at a man you see him as a man or a husband or a brother or an uncle, right, instead of he's from that side -- just trying to get people to communicate better and understand each other better and maybe get these situations to deescalate, which obviously is extremely difficult given the emotions and the circumstances at the time.

You know, it's got to be the most difficult job in the world, a law enforcement officer, but if we're not engendering trust in the segments of the society that they serve, we're not going to get anywhere.

There's so many aspects of social justice, but to me this one kind of registered with me a little bit just in the idea of me thinking that my son could be in a traffic stop, he's not the greatest communicator in the world, and he might be in a situation where maybe through no fault of his own, maybe through some rules and laws and things were maybe a little bit aggressive in our policing, he gets in a situation that escalates.

It's a shame to me to think that he might be the one that's responsible for slowing it down.

Q. Do you feel you've made some headway with your what I call personal mission?

KIRK TRIPLETT: I mean, it feels good to be doing something, right. Placing the sticker on my bag was born out of frustration. When I got the phone call from these folks at D2C, I was very excited because it went from me just answering these kind of questions and talking about my family and just pointing out a situation to, hey, look, here's an action-based group, here's a group that has some ideas and is working on ways to solve it using sort of sport as a common denominator.

They've done a wide variety of things. They've been doing it a long time. It's not like they just popped up out of the air when this hit the news last summer.

It feels good to be a part of something like that and to talk to people that are interested. I was at home and I was playing in a little pro-am, and the guys asked me, hey, what's that all about.

Q. Yeah, I read a story in the Akron paper where you talked about that.

KIRK TRIPLETT: Yeah, so I mean, I don't think I set out to kind of do this, but I think after that first weekend, I realized, okay, I'm in this position, I opened this subject up. I want to learn more, and I have. I've learned a great deal more. I understand both sides way better than I did before. I actually have come to a much better understanding of the law enforcement side because I really approached it from the other side.

Q. I'm curious if your kids, and especially Kobe, have they become curious about what's going on --

KIRK TRIPLETT: Well, he's a teenage boy, right, he's just wants to be under the radar no matter what. But my older kids are -- we have twin boys that are 25, and then we have an adopted daughter who's Hispanic and another adopted son who's half African-American, half Japanese. We've never made any secret about what our family is all about. We're about opportunity and giving people a chance. We adopted kids because we wanted to have more kids, and we've always been very open about that, and actually at times promoted that significantly through a tournament and through some advocacy stuff out here.

Really one of my older boys, he was the one who was -- he goes, dad, you're always talking about this stuff, I don't see you doing much.

Q. I bet that was deflating.

KIRK TRIPLETT: Okay, you're right, you caught me. And I think they're very thoughtful kids, and we try and be that way. Politics is an interesting subject at this point, and it doesn't matter which side of the aisle you're on, social justice is for everybody.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports
106800-1-1002 2021-04-16 19:36:00 GMT

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