Augusta National Adds First Two Female Members - NewsChannel5.com | Nashville News, Weather & Sports

Augusta National Adds First Two Female Members

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At left, in a March 24, 2011 file photo, Darla Moore speaks to students at the University of South Carolina in Columbia, S.C. At right, in a Jan. 24, 2008 file photo, U.S. Secretary of State Condoleeza Rice smiles during a meeting. (AP/FILE) At left, in a March 24, 2011 file photo, Darla Moore speaks to students at the University of South Carolina in Columbia, S.C. At right, in a Jan. 24, 2008 file photo, U.S. Secretary of State Condoleeza Rice smiles during a meeting. (AP/FILE)

NEW YORK (AP) - For the first time in its 80-year history, Augusta National Golf Club has female members.

The home of the Masters has invited former Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice and South Carolina financier Darla Moore to become the first women in green jackets when the club opens for a new season in October.

Both women have accepted. The invitations end a 10-year controversy that began when former club chairman Hootie Johnson said the club would not be pressured "at the point of a bayonet" to change its all-male membership.

Augusta National chairman Billy Payne described Monday's announcement as a "joyous occasion" as he took the rare step of confirming its latest two members. He says it is a "significant and positive time" at the club. Augusta typically does not discuss membership.

(Copyright 2012 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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