Waterloo Region is better for having Gus and Audrey Maue in it. And Crime Stoppers wants to make sure they know it.
The dynamic duo received the 2016 Ontario Association of Crime Stoppers Community Service Award for their crucial role in supporting the Waterloo Region Crime Stoppers branch and beyond.
Next month will mark the 11th annual Moe Norman Memorial Golf Tournament in support of the Waterloo Region Crime Stoppers, which is largely organized by the Maues. They raised more than $28,000 last year.
They also were integral in getting the Grey Bruce Crime Stoppers program started with their annual golf tournament as well as with the Windsor Crime Stoppers program.
“We’re not in it to win awards, believe me. We’ve been at it so long,” Gus Maue said.
The couple lives adjacent to the Foxwood Country Club, which he manages – a fitting location given the couple’s golf-oriented history.
“I’ve been a golf professional all my life. I actually was born in Kitchener, then moved to Toronto to be an assistant golf pro and become a head golf pro in Toronto and then I was lucky enough to come home and be the golf professional at Westmount Golf and Country Club for 25 years. And then I ended up helping build Deer Ridge. In 1980 we bought Foxwood, my wife and I, rebuilt it and sold it to Jim Balsillie, the CEO of Research in Motion,” Maue explains.
He says being in the golf business along with playing professional golf allowed him to meet lots of policemen and in turn he developed a great respect for the profession. Because he was familiar with running charity golf tournaments, Crime Stoppers asked if he would interested in running a tournament for them.
“I thought about it and I told Audrey it’s a lot of work. Even though I was the pro at Westmount at the time I said, ‘sure.’ So we kind of got it off the ground and built a pretty stable base. Charity golf tournaments are really difficult to run now because there’s so much competition. But we were able to get it off the ground and it’s been very successful,” Maue said.
Waterloo Region Crime Stoppers chair Pat DeLay says the couple epitomize what the award is for, making it a no-brainer to nominate them this year.
“Both of them, they’ve done so much for the community, let alone us and it was great to recognize them. I was at the beginning wondering if he wanted us to publicize it because he kind of downplays his role, but he’s integral. It’s our biggest thing to have him there helping us run that, if not running that whole tournament because it’s our biggest fundraiser. If we don’t have that we don’t have a program I don’t think,” DeLay said.
He added, “He’s that important. And he’s important to me. When he gets involved I just let him have full rein because he knows what he’s doing.”
Crime Stoppers is 100 per cent funded by community sponsors and donations. He says the Waterloo Region branch is largely funded through the Maues and their annual golf tournament. Their continual support of the program has helped spread the word, bringing in more tips and solving more crimes.
“They’re ambassadors for our program and also for Waterloo region. Just on Gus’ history alone with golfing and the Moe Norman tie-in, what great stories all the way around,” DeLay said.
The award was doled out at the annual Ontario Association of Crime Stoppers conference in Sudbury last month and he says they were grateful for the nomination and even a bit surprised.
“Both Audrey and Gus were grateful to be considered and that’s how humble they are. Winning awards isn’t their main focus for anything when it comes to doing charitable work,” DeLay said.
Maue says getting Moe Norman involved with the golf tournament really got things rolling. The Maues were his caregivers for many years and now Gus is being consulted by the writers of a movie coming out about Norman.
Born in Kitchener, he had 55 professional wins in his career, before passing away in 2004. Norman was known as the straightest hitter of golf balls ever seen, earning him the nickname “Pipeline Moe,” and was often noted for his offbeat personality. Maue says he was always excited to meet policemen and hockey players.
“He really looked forward to that day, to his tournament. He was a hard person to read. We were probably the closest to him, including his family. He always asked when is my tournament and when we couldn’t run it for a couple years because I had sold Foxwood and I wasn’t allowed to run a tournament away from Foxwood … well Moe was really upset. Because I’d sold the golf course there was a couple years where I couldn’t be involved in running a tournament at another golf course. After that time was up Crime Stoppers asked me if I would please get it going again. Moe was happy. The last couple years of his life because of his health he couldn’t play a lot of golf, but he always looked forward to Crime Stoppers, to his tournament,” Maue said.
He notes many families have been very generous to Crime Stoppers, putting in teams each year, like Kitchener Rangers founder Eugene George’s family, the Hauser family, and the McCrory family.
He says Waterloo Region Crime Stoppers treasurer Fred Hicks and DeLay deserve a lot of credit too, tirelessly working to get the word out about Crime Stoppers. It’s people like that, that inspires him to keep giving back.
“I think once I got to know what Crime Stoppers really does it really fueled the fire to even do more for them. Crime Stoppers, they can’t blow their own horn. You would be amazed the work that Crime Stoppers do. Most of these gang related assaults and murders, stuff with pornography, they’re all solved through Crime Stoppers, but they can’t take any credit for it. Once you really get to know what they’re all about and they’ve got to be very careful what they put out, there’s an awful lot of things that go behind the scenes,” Maue said.
The Maues try to support as many charities as possible, but Gus says his favourite is Crime Stoppers. Their grandchildren have been involved from a young age.
He hopes Crime Stoppers continues to grow by people sending in tips and more people supporting the program and the local police force.
“We need Crime Stoppers, we really do. Whether people know this or not they help young kids and older senior citizens and churches and schools and colleges and workplaces and so on, they try to keep those places safe. The more tips they get, the better,” Maue said.
This year’s 11th annual Moe Norman & Waterloo Regional Crime Stoppers Golf Tournament is Aug. 18 at Foxwood Golf Club.
“We’ve been at it a long time, and god willing we’ll do it for some more years,” Maue said.