- (Photo: Reuters/Valentin Flauraud)
Natalie Gulbis has created a stir with the new cover of Sports Illustrated, and that stir may just benefit an Episcopal school.
Gulbis, a member of the Ladies Pro Golf Association (LPGA), recently posed for the swimsuit edition of Sports Illustrated in nothing but body paint. The timing of the issue is expected to help bring attention to a charity auction benefiting the Palisades Episcopal School in Charlotte.
According to reports, fans will bid to be a caddy for Gulbis during a round of golf in a U.S. LPGA tournament. "Enjoy the chance of a lifetime while caddying for one of the LPGA's brightest stars at the LPGA event of your choice. Experience being inside the ropes, up close to all of the action on course, all while spending the day with an incredible athlete and businesswoman."
At 14 Gulbis played in her first LPGA event, but it wasn't until eight years later that she began earning serious money and attention. In 2005 she took home over $1 million in earnings and placed in four consecutive championships but still lacked her first LPGA win. That came in 2007 at the Evian Masters in France.
In 2004 she controversially released a calendar of her playing golf and wearing swimwear.
Gulbis has also used her notoriety to benefit others, though. In 2009 she appeared in Donald Trump's "Celebrity Apprentice" to pay for the Boys and Girls Club. The organization's mission is "to enable all young people, especially those who need us most, to reach their full potential as productive, caring, responsible citizens."
Gulbis did not win the season of "Apprentice" but managed to promote her charity.
Michael Dixon, a featured columnist for the Bleacher Report noted that Gublis' photos could not have come at a better time for the school. "Gulbis' star is bright right now. It's good to see her taking advantage of that to help out a good cause. She is sure to raise a lot of money."