The Roman Open Golf Tournament was founded in 1975 by a group of gentlemen from the local Catholic & Episcopal churches and the Jewish synagogue with the intent to raise money to put a new roof on the Catholic Church. Due to its success in the first year, the tournament became an annual event. By 1984, the tournament had grown to a point that part of the annual proceeds was donated to the Friendship House (a daycare center and preschool for underprivileged children), to help offset their costs. In 1990, the Board of Directors, which by this time was mostly non-Catholic, incorporated to become the Roman Open Charities, Inc. At this junction, the decision was made to move away from any direct religious affiliation and become a charitable association donating all proceeds to non-profit organizations operating in Whitfield and Murray counties.
Today a thirty-member Board of Directors governs the Roman Open Charities, Inc. All monies from the tournament are distributed to local charities that have petitioned for a grant. An internal committee of the Board of Directors determines petitioners’ qualifications and amounts of the grants to be awarded. Total grants for 2018 were $ 92,500, distributed to forty local charities, two memorial scholarships to Dalton State College, and eight merit scholarships to Georgia Northwestern Technical College.