EarthShaping News 2nd Qtr 2016

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Published Quarterly by the Golf Course Builders Association of America

2nd Quarter 2016

GCBAA set to gather in Jersey City for its Summer Meeting Its been 10 years since the Golf Course Builders Association of America hosted arguably its most memorable Summer Meeting in Jersey City. Turn back the time to 2005, where, having completed his weather-suspended final round in exciting fashion, Phil Mickelson birdied the par-5 18th at Baltusrol with a brilliant up-and-down to win the 87th PGA Championship for his second career major title. Much has happened since that 2005 Meeting and Tournament… George W. Bush was inaugurated to his second-term as U.S. View from Manhattan of the GCBAA Headquarter Hotel, Hyatt president, Hurricane Katrina devastated the Louisiana, Mississippi Regency on the Hudson and Alabama coastlines, the historic Iraq War, Saddam Hussein and Osama bin Laden were both captured and killed, a devastating tornado shook Joplin, MO, heartbreak from the Boston Marathon attack, pop icons Michael Jackson and Prince, along with Apple founder Steve Jobs and boxing legend Muhammad Ali passed away, Barack Obama was elected as U.S. president, and same-sex marriage was legalized in all 50 U.S. states. While the abovementioned isn’t an inclusive list of events shaping our history, it’s clear we have seen our share of tragedy and devastation, along with resiliency and courage. These events, along with others, have united this great country and continue to give each of us opportunities. We hope to carry that message in Jersey City next month as we reunite with fellow members and industry friends. The Meetings Committee is pleased to welcome you back to our headquarter hotel, the Hyatt Regency. We’re optimistic that the meeting content and networking will be bigger and better than ever. You’ll notice the meeting format has shifted slightly to give members the opportunity to enjoy the weekend rounds of the PGA Championship held once again at Baltusrol Golf Club. With not much more than 12 hours after the tournament champion is crowned, GCBAA members will be on their way to Galloping Hill Golf Course for the celebrated Sticks for Kids Golf Outing. The GCBAA Foundation has fantastic news to share about Sticks for Kids and the excitement surrounding this year’s golf tournament – see Foundation President Tom Shapland’s message on page 4 for the scoop! After returning from the course, members and guests will gather for our Opening Reception in the hotel’s Manhattan Ballroom. With floor-to-ceiling windows and incredible views of the Hudson River and NYC skyline, we hope you’ll enjoy plenty of comradery with members and even some new faces. You’ll soon see that Tuesday’s education will reach all membership types and provide valuable take-aways for all attendees. The Education Committee has worked to bring back some familiar faces at the request of the membership, and sprinkled in new content that will challenge you to grow your business and stay ahead of industry trends. COVER STORY CONTINUED ON PAGE 11

INSIDE 2 President’s Perspective 3 Executive Director Notes 4 Foundation Update 6 New Sticks for Kids Programs 7 Grand Opening of Watson 9 8 National Golf Day 10 Human Resources 12 Developer’s Guide 22 Allied Associations 27 New Members 28 Movers & Shapers 30 Advertisers

President’s Perspective



I never could have imagined how much I would enjoy representing the Golf Course Builders Association and all of you along with the GCBAA staff at the various allied events. In April, Justin and I attended the American Society of Golf Course Architects annual meeting in Bethesda, Maryland. They host an event very similar to ours and had a great attendance and meeting format. It was no surprise how welcoming their membership was to GCBAA. It was an honor to join them at their Donald Ross dinner and celebrate their 2016 Donald Ross recipient, Michael Bamberger. The best way to describe their event was “fun.” A number of their members participate in the education as well as offer open discussions during this time. There was some terrific networking and we look forward to working with their society in the years to come. Congratulations to my counterpart Greg Martin on his presidency as I look forward to working with him throughout the year. I am just making the deadline for this article as we are on day two of the National Golf Course Owners Association Multiple Course Owners Retreat in New York. The headquarter hotel is across from Central Park and the theme of “Change is in the Air” is obvious by the change of venue that was traditionally the Monterey Plaza Hotel in California. The meeting room was packed today with multiple course operators, agronomic officers, allieds, and special guests. During the introductions, all segments of the golf industry were represented and I was happy to hear how much support newly hired CEO of the NGCOA Jay Karen is receiving from the other association executives. Jay has a relatively new staff and it is never easy to make change within an organization. They are all doing a fantastic job and again welcomed GCBAA with open arms and appreciation. A common theme is continuing within golf. While each organization continues to struggle with their own unique challenges, one thing is certain – all of the organizations are collaborating more today than ever before. Collectively, golf is working together to, at the very least, understand one another’s challenges; and in several instances, working together to address those issues.


I know that GCBAA needs to be welcoming to our friends in the industry and continue the open door approach our Past President Rick Boylan began. I want to ensure that the other organizations in golf are as welcomed at GCBAA events as we are to theirs. Please help me welcome the entire golf industry into your own activities and lets all work together to face our challenges in the industry. You should have received your Summer Meeting registrations and I hope you can join us in Jersey City. I know the various committees involved in setting up the event have a great meeting planned and I for one am looking forward to not only seeing each of you, but also getting to enjoy the fantastic location of the hotel and events. As you will see in this issue there is a lot your association is doing for our membership. Justin and Samantha are keeping all of our activities on the right track and with the growth of the regional education as well as some of our other projects and programs, we are having an exciting 2016.


I appreciate all of the support you are giving to GCBAA and please let me know if you have any suggestions or concerns as we approach the half way point in the year. I can honestly say I do not know where the time has gone. I’m pleased that the market has picked up and as I visit with many of you, you are also seeing an increase in golf construction and renovation. It is important that we keep working together, the market can change in an instant and we need to continue to get stronger as an organization and industry to weather the next storm.



Scott Veazey

Executive Director Notes I’m having trouble trying to figure out where to begin with this report. So many great things have been happening with your organization it is hard to pick where to start. I’ll begin by sharing some exciting personal news for my family. Around the February Golf Industry Show my wife and I had talked with our parents about moving closer to our hometown. Melissa and I grew up together in a small town outside of Lincoln and while we already lived relatively close, we had decided to move back to our hometown. There are more options for schools and sports for our kids as well as both sets of parents. Fortunately, we were able to sell our house quickly and spent the last few weekends moving. The kids are loving the town swimming pool and summer sports, my wife is happy to be back closer to the family farm and horses, and I have adjusted to the 15 more minutes on my daily commute. It was a change we had been discussing for many years and had always been a goal of ours even before being married. It was one of those decisions that you wait for the right time thinking there is going to be some kind of obvious sign. We finally made the decision, planned, and executed. Sometimes you know what you want but wait for a sign that may never come. I think so long as you know what you want to accomplish and have a plan; don’t wait for someone else to execute! Fortunately, some of our confidence in making this decision stemmed from a similar attitude GCBAA has been taking to many of its strategic initiatives. The board has identified a number of programs that we know we want to, at the very least, try. It can be so difficult to hit that “execute” button but it needs to be done. Our offering of regional meetings is a prime example. Thanks to many of you who have helped us identify markets to drop in on, we have been able to execute two regional meetings so far this year with at least two more planned in 2016. These events have been a great opportunity to network with our membership who are not always able to attend national events. It also helps the association understand issues affecting the golf construction industry so that we can work to provide solutions to those problems. Finally, the network of being able to align suppliers with contractors and designers not only helps with our educational efforts, it has also been a valuable tool in helping us utilize our membership and pair you with other golf initiatives. GCBAA President Scott Veazey and I have had the pleasure to join many allieds at their annual meetings this spring and early summer. In April we joined the American Society of Golf Course Architects for their annual meeting. Scott and I just finished the annual National Golf Course Owners Multiple Course Owners Retreat in New York. Additionally, staff and I have attended planning meetings for the 2017 Golf Industry Show all while hosting regional meetings in Texas and Arizona. Be sure to read the article on GCBAA’s attendance at National Golf Day this May as well. The week of the US Open, USGA CEO Mike Davis invited industry executives for an afternoon meeting to discuss initiatives important to the allieds of golf. I had the pleasure of being a part of this discussion and am pleased with the direction this great game is heading.



6040 S. 58th St., Suite D Lincoln, NE 68516 TEL (402) 476-4444 FAX (402) 476-4489



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All of these trips have provided new programs and opportunities for our membership. We are extremely thrilled to share updates on our Partnership Programs with Caterpillar as well as a new program offering insurance CONTINUED ON PAGE 5



Foundation Update As all of you know, the GCBAA Foundation’s primary charitable program is Sticks for Kids. It has been growing steadily with 18 more programs added this year and continues to provide excellent equipment and instruction to more than 40,000 children annually. Thanks to thousands of volunteer hours and innovative fundraising efforts, we have been able to sustain a modest rate of growth and potentially reinstate some programs that were placed on the backburner during the industry downturn.


A cynic might say that no good deed goes unpunished (and there are a lot of cynics among we contractors), but this is clearly not the case with Sticks for Kids. The evidence of this is particularly clear when we received a very surprising and welcomed note from golf legend Greg Norman, whose firm has been a member of the GCBAA for more than twenty years. We are extremely hopeful that Greg’s involvement and insight will improve existing programs and inject a new level of vitality in the overall Sticks for Kids program and the Foundation as a whole. Please read the letter below from Mr. Norman and also remember to thank your Board President, Scott Veazey, whose long term relationship with Greg Norman Golf Course Design undoubtedly contributed to this welcomed endorsement.

Tom Shapland



June 17, 2016


Golf Course Builders Associati th 6040 S. 58 Street, Suite D raska 68516 Neb oln, Linc


on of America & Foundation

ident Tom Shapland: t Veazey and Foundation Pres ys been a on of America, I have alwa is Golf Course Builders Associati Sticks for Kids program. It ed As a 20-year member of the relat the and n, datio ciation, its Foun industry, persevered with its golf strong supporter of the Asso the in n ntur dow a ite p that, desp pment and gratifying to be part of a grou e by providing quality equi sting in the future of the gam equally gratifying that this is It s. charitable endeavors -- inve year 10 past the just 000 children in extremely instruction to more than 400, inistrative overhead as it is with a bare minimum of adm tly to the programs. direc go work has been accomplished eeds proc ng raisi virtually all of the fund important to me to know that program. support of the Sticks for Kids today to offer a more personal of these nearly 370 one how d -han I wanted to reach out to you first see like to visit a program and the game First and foremost, I would GCBAA Foundation. Teaching pment and support from the , stance, grip, rules that d rstan unde active programs utilize the equi we le the future of the game. Whi essence of of golf to our youth ensures the game, we know the true scoring are vital to learning are unique to that es valu pline swinging, pitching, putting and disci selfsportsmanship, etiquette, and to the golf is that it instills integrity, onal, autographed memorabilia ld like to offer some of my pers in Jersey ust Aug this ting Mee mer our game. Additionally, I wou Sum Kids at the upcoming Annual auction supporting Sticks for . City ram. In my ent of the Stick for Kids prog of reiterate my personal endorsem s the tools to overcome the issue In summary, I would like to offer ram prog ent lopm deve player s in a ate golf clubs and lesson plan experience, no other youth golf opri appr with ren child ped handicap equipping underprivileged and manner. more rewarding and efficient ote the Sticks for Kids program! help you and the GCBAA prom Please let me know how I can

Dear GCBAA President Scot


Greg Norman




12 640-7000·FAX: 561-684-81 FLORIDA 33411·TEL:561-


Executive Director Notes (cont.) discounts for our individual members needing errors and omissions insurance as well as professional liability coverage. The Foundation also has exciting news with a new program between the Foundation and GCSAA’s Environmental Institute for Golf as well as an endorsement of our Sticks for Kids Program by golf professional Greg Norman. The Foundation successfully launched 18 new Sticks for Kids Programs this year as well as provided maintenance grants to nearly a dozen existing programs! We certainly understand the golf market might not be fully recovered and we know there are still challenges you are facing as a company. We need to hear from you on how your association can assist. The Buy from Within Program is more than a tag line! Be sure to look at the membership for your project needs first. Enjoy the issue and keep in touch with the office on how we can help you. Justin Apel

Platinum Level (OVER $100,000)


Gold Level ($50,000 - $99,999)


Silver Level ($10,000 - $49,999)


Bronze Level ($1,000 - $9,999)

GCBAA Foundation & EIFG Create Project Notice Incentive Program The Golf Course Builders Association of America Foundation and the Golf Course Superintendents Association of America’s Environmental Institute for Golf (EIFG) has partnered in an agreement to incentivize project notices received by the GCBAA to share with its members. Each time a facility shares an RFP or Project Notice for a golf course construction project for the GCBAA office to share with our membership the GCBAA Foundation will make a contribution to the EIFG. Notice of a new posting will be sent to each member of the GCBAA by email notice as well as posted to a secure, members only page on the website. For the remainder of 2016 the GCBAA Foundation hopes to contribute up to $5000.00 to the EIFG and future years will be evaluated based on the level of interest.



New Sticks for Kids Programs Awarded in 2016 This year, the GCBAA Foundation approved funding for 18 new Sticks for Kids programs. These programs serve children and disabled adults throughout the United States, making the game of golf accessible and affordable to their local communities. Welcome! We can’t wait to watch your programs grow! Pelican Point Golf & Country Club Location: Venice, FL

The GCBAA Foundation also awarded the following maintenance grant requests for 2016!

The First Tee of Eastern Michigan Location: Flint, MI

Mid-Atlantic Junior Blind Golf Association Location: Cherry Hill, NJ

World of Golf Location: Florence, KY

Lost National Municipal Golf Course Location: Willoughby, OH

Rohnert Park Community Services Department Rohnert Park, GA

Oaks Hollow Golf Course Location: High Point, NC

Rose Hill Location: Bluffton, SC

Town of Huntington Parks & Recreation Location: Huntington, NY

City of Menasha Location: Menasha, WI

Pittsfield Parks & Recreation Program Location: Pittsfield, MA

City of Orange Beach Golf Center Location: Orange Beach, AL

Oak Island Park & Recreation Department Location: Oak Island, NC

Cloverleaf Golf Club Location: Delmont, PA

Michigan Women’s Golf Association Location: Waterford, MI

Central Cambria School District Location: Ebensburg, PA

Wheeling Park Commission-Oglebay Resort Location: Wheeling, WV

Monzingo Lake Golf Course Location: Maryville, MO

Euclid Parks & Recreation Location: Euclid, OH

South Gleason Golf Course Location: Gary, IN

City of New Brighton-Brighton Hills Golf Club Location: New Brighton, MN

Boys & Girls Club of Bay City & Matagorda

City of North Las Vegas Location: North Las Vegas, NV

County Location: Bay City, TX Stone Creek Golf Course Location: Chanute, KS Brookside Golf Course Location: Saline, MI Peoria Park District – Golf Division Location: Peoria, IL Pico Rivera Golf Course Location: Studio City, CA Bell Gardens Golf Course Location: Studio City, CA Maggie Hathaway Golf Course Location: Studio City, CA


Boys and Girls Club of Chelsea Location: Chelsea, OK City of Rowlett Parks & Recreation Location: Rowlett, TX Shelbyville/Shelby County Parks & Recreation Location: Shelbyville, KY

Grand Opening of Watson 9 in Maryville, MO The GCBAA Foundation was pleased to include in their approvals of new Sticks for Kids Programs a unique project that involved several GCBAA Members. Mozingo Lake Golf Course in Maryville, Missouri is a 27-hole facility with a championship 18-hole course. Recently a nine-hole development course was designed by Tom Watson. The youth golf program consists of four-three day camps throughout the summer serving 150-300 kids at each camp. The goal of Mozingo is to have enough clubs through the Sticks for Kids Program so that all youth who participate will not need to have their own clubs. Financial aid is available for families that need help in having their children participate. Kyle Easter is the Head Golf Professional and in charge of the program. Golf Digest Magazine has named The Watson 9 at Mozingo Lake Recreation Park one of the top 15 Hybrid Mozingo Lake Golf Course Courses in North America. On Saturday, May 14 GCBAA Clubhouse and Newly dedicated Executive Director Justin Apel attended the grand opening Tom Watson statue of the new facility. Legendary Golfer Tom Watson played an inaugural round with area youth. GCBAA Charter and Certified Builder Mid-America Golf & Landscape, Inc. was contracted to do the construction. Funds from the Wadsworth Golf Charities Foundation as well as Links Across America were used. ASGCA Members Tom Watson and Robert Gibbons contributed to the design. GCBAA Charter Member The Toro Welcome Plaque – Watson 9 Hole Company provided irrigation products. Development Course

Inaugural Round of the Watson 9 Course

GCBAA Builder Member Dominic Scarpelli, Mid-America Golf & Landscape, Inc.; Justin Apel; Robert Gibbons

Justin Apel on 9th Green (Photo credit Bob Gibbons)

GCBAA March Madness Winners Announced Thanks to all members that participated in the 2nd annual March Madness Tourney Challenge this spring. We are pleased to announce our 2016 winners: 1st Place – Jason Sloan, Frontier Golf (GCBAA OGIO Backpack) 2nd Place – Jon Beckmann, South Florida Golf Renovations (GCBAA YETI Tumbler) We hope you’ll join in the Madness next year!


9th Annual National Golf Day a Success in D.C. Another successful National Golf Day was held in Washington D.C. on May 18. More than 120 golf industry leaders were in attendance, with representation from the GCBAA, National Golf Course Owners Association, Golf Course Superintendents Association of America, PGA TOUR, PGA of America, U.S. Golf Manufacturers Council and the World Golf Foundation. We are thrilled to share that this year’s National Golf Day was the best attended in its nine-year history. GCBAA staff and members began National Golf Day with the Annual Nebraska Breakfast. This 70 year old tradition allows constituents to spend time with the entire Nebraska Delegation, and hear about what’s happening on Capitol Hill. The breakfast is one of Nebraska’s great traditions that bring the people and their representatives together. After a special kickoff event on Capitol Hill hosted by the We Are Golf coalition, the opening ceremony welcomed three guests from the PGA and LPGA tours: Davis Love III, 2016 Ryder Cup captain, Steve Stricker, 2017 Presidents Cup captain, and LPGA Hall of Famer Nancy Lopez. The group then broke off into meetings with Senate and House representatives throughout the day, focusing on three primary issues: (1) environmental regulations impacting golf, (2) the PHIT Act and (3) labor regulations impacting golf. The media coverage before, during and after National Golf Day was strong, bringing even more attention to our efforts on Capitol Hill. Nearly 60 publicity placements including ABC, Bloomberg, BuzzFeed, CBS,, Forbes, FOX, USA Today and others provided coverage of the event. GCBAA was represented by Executive Director Justin Apel, Program & Planning Manager Samantha Huff, Foundation Board Member Doug York of Ewing Irrigation, GCBAA Board Member & Foundation Liaison Dennis Wagner of Hunter Industries, along with Jon Truttmann and Jeff Bine of Hunter Industries. The 10th annual National Golf Day is set for April 26, 2017. GCBAA members are invited and encouraged to participate to see firsthand the interworkings of Washington D.C.

Rayburn Foyer – Justin Apel, Doug York, Dennis Wagner, Samantha Huff, Jeff Bine, and Jon Truttmann

Doug York and Jon Truttmann


Justin Apel, Samantha Huff, Congressman Steve Knight (CA-25), & Jeff Bine

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An issue that has been impossible to miss over the last year is the treatment and accommodation of transgender individuals. As employers, you should be thinking about how to handle the treatment of transgender employees, as well as how to handle training and concerns with your other employees. This is a politically and emotionally charged issue and there are no easy answers that will satisfy everyone, so what should you do? Several government agencies as well as the President have all made clear their positions on the treatment of transgender individuals. Specifically regarding employers of transgender employees, the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) and the Department of Labor’s (DOL) Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) have stated their positions with respect to the issue. The EEOC has settled several lawsuits against employers of transgender employees over the last few years. While no federal law directly prohibits discrimination based on sexual orientation or gender identity, the EEOC has used Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 which prohibits “sex” discrimination and harassment to pursue these lawsuits. From these cases, it has become evident as to what the EEOC expects out of employers. The EEOC recommends that employers include gender identity in non-discrimination and no-harassment policies. This policy should generally provide that discrimination or harassment against transgender individuals will not be tolerated whether the behavior comes from employees, customers, clients, or anyone else. Employers should also conduct annual training on avoiding discrimination based on any protected class including gender identity, gender dysphoria, and sex stereotyping. The training should be mandatory for all employees. Further, managers, supervisors and others who work in a human resource capacity are encouraged to undergo more extensive training on these issues. Your employees should refer to a transgender employee as their identified gender and use their gender-identified name. Employees who deliberately refer to another employee’s biological gender or original name would be discriminating against and harassing the transgender employee. This discrimination could result in a lawsuit


against both the employee and the employer. When an employee requests that the employer change the employee’s records to reflect a different gender or name, the EEOC’s position is that the employer should do as requested. The employer should do so without asking for medical records or other requests in an attempt to probe into the employee’s medical details. While the EEOC’s position is not clear with respect to a request to verify that an employee’s legal name has changed, this is presumably allowed so to avoid issues with the IRS and the Social Security Administration. However, even if a transgender employee has not legally changed their name, they should still be referred to by their identified name in day to day employment conditions. With respect to restroom use, the EEOC simply requires an employer to allow the transgender employee to use the restroom which is “commensurate with their gender identity” without any limitations. Again, an employer is not entitled to request any medical records proving gender-reassignment therapy or surgery. Further, an employer’s health benefits plan should not have exclusions based only on sex or gender dysphoria. As an example, if the benefit plan provides for hormone therapy for any other type of medical condition, the plan should also provide hormone therapy for an employee going through a gender reassignment process. Similarly directed at employees, OSHA has formally published their position in a release titled, “A Guide to Restroom Access for Transgender Workers.” OSHA takes the position that “bathroom restrictions can result in employees avoiding using restrooms entirely while at work, which can lead to potentially serious physical injury or illness.” Therefore, OSHA states that all workers should be permitted to use the restroom that corresponds with their gender identity. Employees may also choose to use a single-occupancy genderneutral restroom but should not be required to use such restroom. OSHA, along with the EEOC, states that employees should not ask for verification or legal documentation in order to have access to genderappropriate facilities. In July of 2014, President Obama signed Executive


Order 13672 extending protection in hiring and employment to transgender individuals. Specifically, it prohibits discrimination on the basis of gender identity by federal contractors in both hiring and daily employment conditions. While this order is only binding on federal contractors, it demonstrates that the position of the White House is similar to the EEOC and OSHA. There are also many states that have enacted transgender specific laws and regulations. Employers should use caution and be cognizant of this issue as the EEOC has been diligently prosecuting these types of discrimination cases. While no federal law directly prohibits discrimination or harassment of transgender employees, the EEOC and OSHA have found other ways to successfully penalize employers. Your state may also have laws or regulations directly prohibiting discrimination and harassment of transgender employees. If an employee has stated that they now identify with a different gender and have a new name, the employer should accept the employee’s declaration. The employer’s other employees should also be trained to avoid discrimination and harassment of their transgender coworkers. Editor’s Note: This article is not intended to provide legal advice to our readers. Rather, this article is intended to alert our readers to new and developing issues and to provide some common sense answers to complex legal questions. Readers are urged to consult their own legal counsel or the authors of this article if the reader wishes to obtain a specific legal opinion regarding how these legal standards may apply to their particular circumstances. The authors of this article, Jack L. Shultz and Kramer L. Lyons, Senior Certified Law Student, can be contacted at 402/434-3000, or at O’Neill, Heinrich, Damkroger, Bergmeyer & Shultz, P.C., L.L.O., P.O. Box 82028, Lincoln, NE 68501-2028, jshultz@

GCBAA Set to gather in Jersey City for its Summer Meeting The evening will play host to our “Buy From Within” Reception, recognizing GCBAA associate members who continue to provide the very best in service to our builder membership and the industry as a whole. Following the reception will be our awards dinner, live and silent auction, and announcement of the raffle winners. Keep in mind that all proceeds benefit the GCBAA Foundation and its supporting programs. We encourage you to visit the Summer Meeting webpage for a current list of auction items that have been generously donated. After what’s sure to be an electric night, the Summer Meeting wraps Wednesday with the Board of Directors meeting and coinciding education that is irrigation specific. Certified Builder Members will have the opportunity to take the Certified Irrigation Contractor exam during this time as well. With the meeting adjourning on Wednesday, we hope you’ll consider sticking around for the remainder of the week to experience this historic city. Please contact the office with any questions regarding next month’s Summer Meeting. We are here to help you register, book your hotel rooms, assist with sponsorship opportunities and everything in between. We look forward to seeing you next month! PGA Championship Admission The PGA Championship will take place July 28-31 at Baltusrol Golf Club in Springfield, New Jersey. Your 2016 GCBAA membership card, when accompanied by a photo ID, offers you complimentary grounds admission into the tournament. Check out www.pga. com/pgachampionship for additional information on the tournament.




Developers – like golf course builders – have changed in very basic and impactful ways. The results will be widespread, diverse and unlike the housing boom cycle that was so generous for golf course builders. The concept of a “developer” has changed. Private club boards and individual golf course owners are today’s developers. The result is smaller projects with highly focused intentions, such as new tees and bunkers, renovated greens and / or dedicated drainage and arboreal projects. Many of the large-scale residential developers and builders have shelved past methods for community development and, as a consequence, golf courses were assigned different priorities and preferences. Golf remains a lifestyle priority for many of the largest homebuilding companies. These companies are re-sorting the timeline for golf courses, which have been a drag on internal rates of return. Smaller and less expensive amenities, such as fitness facilities and Starbucks-type venues substitute wellness and socialization as the highly attractive early-in-theproject amenities. The shift in thinking is worrisome to many golf course builders and tests their collective commitment. However, GCBAA members have now experienced the greatest housing booms in the history of the planet – and, with it, one of the greatest growth surges in new golf course development. Likewise, builders have survived the worst economic declines since the Great Depression. Such dramatic highs and lows provide wisdom, insight and a heckuva roller-coaster ride. What does the future hold for golf course builders? GCBAA builders must develop new and more efficient methods in order to unlock emerging opportunities. Understanding that they now operate within a new business paradigm, golf course builders must implement several key changes in process: 1. Be small and act BIG. Golf course builders must be ever more resourceful solution providers for developers of all types. The shift to smaller projects


directed by servant leaders and club volunteers means that GCBAA members need to refine their project management and redundant communication skills. Only on certain projects will GCBAA members be dealing with college-educated engineers and project supervisors. 2. Recognize that funding will be a point of pressure for clients and of opportunity for builders who can be good shepherds of project resources. 3. Support where and how golf fits into the overall plan. Golf remains important to more than 24 million people, according to the National Golf Foundation’s April 2016 update. Golf remains “sticky” with its core audience segments and churns roughly 3 million golfers per year. Three million into the game and roughly the same number who leave golf for reasons such as time and economic constraint. Opportunities are emerging for GCBAA members. Most opportunities are local in nature, smaller in scope and budget, and more demanding due to lack of experience for “developers”. The opportunity lies in the fact that GCBAA builders can fill important needs. New projects will surface in states such as Arizona, California, the Carolinas, Florida, Georgia, Nevada and Texas. Almost 80% of the top 50 new residential communities from 2015 launched within these states. Solutions must be on a smaller scale and ready-todemand. Most developments will source capital from local resources such as member assessments, local banks and wealthy individuals. Builders who can be nimble, responsive and on-budget will prosper. Four big takeaways for golf course builders. 1. After a significant market correction, golf remains a primary amenity and land-planning solution for most property developers. And, golf retains advantageous “pull” for 40- to 70-year age cohorts of high household income and educational attainment. New types of “developers” have


Masters emerged; they are club committees and boards of directors; 2. It is NOT business as usual. Most successful builders will have changed their methods and systems while continuing to rely upon experienced, expert and proven people; 3. The opportunities that are attainable requires that small companies act big by sharing procurement expertise and network reach. Big builders must use their strengths of access to capital and people to act small by being on-point and highly accessible; and 4. Advanced customer relationship management is essential for every golf course builder – whether the developer is a club or a homebuilding company. Get to know everyone and see that you are known to everyone. Henry DeLozier is a principal at Global Golf Advisors, the largest consulting company in the world specialized in golf-related businesses.

Augusta National Golf Club, Augusta, GA 2017 – April 6-9 2018 – April 5-8

U.S. Open

2017 Erin Hills Erin, WI – June 12-18 2018 Shinnecock Hills Golf Club Southampton, NY – June 14-17

British Open

2016 Royal Troon Golf Club July 14-17 Scotland 2017 Royal Birkdale Golf Club July 20-23 England 2018 Carnoustie Golf Links July 19-22 Scotland

PGA Championship 2016 Baltustrol Golf Club Springfield, NJ – July 28-31

2017 Quail Hollow Charlotte, NC – August 10-13 2018 Bellerive Country Club St. Louis, MO – August – TBA

GCBAA Welcomes New Charter Member Lepanto Golf Construction The GCBAA is pleased to welcome Lepanto Golf Construction, Inc., as the association’s 49th Charter Member. Lepanto Golf is a Certified Builder, Certified Renovation Builder, and Irrigation Contractor. With nearly 30 years of golf course industry experience Lepanto Golf is recognized as one of the premier contractors with experience at all levels from new construction projects to the smaller renovation projects. All made possible with a loyal and talented staff whose key personnel have been together since the creation of the company. Lepanto Golf Construction, Inc. is based in Pomona Park, FL. While most of their projects have centered around South Florida, their crews and specialized golf course construction equipment have recently completed projects throughout the Eastern United States, such as Massachusetts, New York, Virginia, Michigan, Illinois, and as far west as Arkansas and Texas.

Medalist Golf Club Hole 18 - Hobe Sound, FL

Lepanto Golf has had the opportunity to work with many of the industry’s premier golf course architects at some of the most highly regarded golf clubs in the country. Whether constructing a new golf course or restoring a classic masterpiece Lepanto Golf takes great pride in their attention to detail and high quality of work. Lepanto Golf is looking forward to a bright future and growth alongside of GCBAA and its fellow members. Please join us in welcoming Lepanto Golf Construction as GCBAA’s 49th Charter Member.

Winchester Country Club Hole 14 - Boston, MA


Winchester Country Club Hole 9 - Boston, MA

Fleetwood Services LLC Welcomed as GCBAA’s 50th Charter Member The GCBAA is pleased to welcome Fleetwood Services LLC as the association’s 50th Charter Member. Fleetwood Services, LLC is an Associate Builder of GCBAA, and has been building and renovating golf courses since 2010.

-R olling Hills, Arlington, TX – Designed by Colligan Golf

Based in Dallas, TX, Fleetwood Services LLC is owned and operated by Robert and Pam Fleetwood. Robert has been in the golf course construction and development business since 1986 and has built more than 250 courses. Fleetwood Services, LLC employs over 50 personnel, who have the knowledge needed to complete every aspect of a project in a timely manner.

-R ockwood Golf Course, Fort Worth, TX – Designed by Colligan Golf

- S quaw Creek Golf Course, Willow Park, TX – Designed by Colligan Golf

-M aridoe Golf Course, Carrollton, TX – Designed by Steve Smyers Please join us in welcoming Fleetwood Services as GCBAA’s 50th Charter Member. Charter Membership is reserved for GCBAA members who demonstrate a strong interest in continuing the success and growth of the organization and express their support by making a one-time minimum contribution of $10,000 in addition to annual membership dues.

Fleetwood Services, LLC has completed over 140 jobs for various golf courses and country clubs, both public and private since 2010. The following are completed 18 hole remodels including irrigation performed by the Texas-based golf course construction company.

Photos courtesy of Fleetwood Services LLC


GCBAA Regional Meeting & Executive Board Meeting tee off in Texas Tuesday, April 12 members of the GCBAA Executive Board held their spring meeting in Addison, Texas. Executive Board Members included Immediate Past President Rick Boylan, current President Scott Veazey, Incoming President Pat Karnick, Treasurer Judd Duininck, Vice President Dennis Wagner, Secretary Ellen Davis, and special guest GCBAA Board Member Mark Creighton. GCBAA Executive Director Justin Apel and Program Planning Manager Samantha Huff were also present. Staff provided summaries of the 2016 Golf Industry Show in San Diego as well as other activities the executive office is working on. The group then joined early arrivals for the following day’s Regional Meeting at the Topgolf facility in Carrollton, TX. On Wednesday, April 13 over 50 attendees converged on Maridoe Golf Club, for the first GCBAA Regional Meeting of 2016. The golf course formerly known as Honors Golf Club was undergoing a complete renovation. Just outside of the meeting area of the club house the group could witness acres of the property completely under renovation. Course architect and ASGCA Past President Steve Smyers, along with GCBAA Charter Member Fleetwood Services LLC & Certified Builder Heritage Links are assisting with the design and construction. Course irrigation designer and GCBAA Member Tony Altum of A.S. Altum & Associates, provided insight on irrigation trends as well as a very interesting update from the Director of Golf Services at Topgolf, Libby Godlove. We appreciate the support from our regional allied contacts, USGA Green Section John Daniels, GCSAA Field Representative Brian Cloud, and Chuck Higgins, PGA of America regional manager. Steve Smyers and golf course superintendent Shawn Westacott were also on hand to discuss the Maridoe project. GCBAA Charter Members Rain Bird, Profile Products, and ADS/Hancor each shared installation techniques of their products and we wrapped up with best management practices for operating and maintaining equipment with David Haggerty of Kubota. We would like to thank all of our attendees and sponsors for a great couple of days in Texas!

Eagle Support


Birdie Support

Par Support

GCBAA Executive Board Members & Staff

GCBAA Charter Members Bryan Juwig and GCBAA Board Member Rick Williamson, LASCO Fittings, Inc.

Personal Tour of Maridoe Golf Club – Tim Hubbard, Steve Smyers, Ian Williams, Samantha Huff, Rick Williamson, Mike Perez, & Justin Apel

Tony Altum & Steve Smyers

Education in full swing!

Golf Course Shaper Jake Cope & Justin Apel

GCBAA 2016 SUMMER MEETING Networking • Family Fun • Education • PGA Championship

JERSEY CITY, NJ • AUGUST 1-3, 2016 Monday, August 1 Sticks for Kids Golf Outing & Opening Reception

Tuesday, August 2 Full Day Education Program with Awards Dinner & Auction

Wednesday, August 3 Irrigation Symposium & Board of Directors Meeting





Registration Open at

June’s Arizona Regional Meeting a Success GCBAA almost beat the heat of Arizona by scheduling its second regional meeting June 8 at Mesa Country Club. We were told we missed the mild weather before a heat wave had settled in for our meeting. Fortunately, the roof of the Diamondbacks stadium was closed for our Tuesday night opening event watching the Arizona Diamondbacks play the Tampa Bay Rays. On Wednesday the group began early with the always insightful GCBAA Member Henry DeLozier of Global Golf Advisors. Henry offers optimism of the golf market by utilizing trends they are seeing in the development world. Henry and GCBAA both promote the message to our membership to be well versed and educated to be more than low bid on projects. There are ways that the membership can position themselves to be a resource to golf facilities. GCBAA members offered education and trends of products used in construction including Ted Fist with Capillary Concrete, Randy Hamilton with Profile Products, and Joe Traficano with West Coast Turf. We also welcomed representatives from local allied organizations, Jeff Jensen of GCSAA as well as local ASGCA members Gary Brawley and Forrest Richardson. Guest presenters Bert Hagen with Stotz Equipment and Jeff Frair with Empire Machinery provided continuing education on challenges contractors are facing with equipment maintenance. We once again thank all of our attendees and sponsors who were a part of the event.

Eagle Support


Birdie Support

Par Support

Regional Meeting underway in Arizona

Members and guests networking between sessions

Forrest Richardson & Steve Sakurai

ASGCA Member Gary Brawley

Group photo – Wrapping up the Arizona Meeting

GCBAA Guests enjoying the Diamondbacks Game

GCBAA Leadership represented at ASGCA’s Annual Meeting

Reminder of the Caterpillar Partnership with the GCBAA Foundation

GCBAA Executive Director Justin Apel and President Scott Veazey were honored to be guests at the 70th Annual gathering of the American Society of Golf Course Architects in Washington D.C. April 24-26. The meeting hosted over 100 members and spouses as well as nearly 30 special guests. Outgoing President Steve Smyers has been a great friend to GCBAA and we congratulate him on his presidency. The education agenda featured some unique discussions and presentations. A fitting presentation for the area in which the meeting was held was a presentation on “Presidents Who Golf ” given by Jonathan Cummings. What followed was a healthy discussion on the changes in the golfer’s expectations from generation to generation. There is a significant change in what the generation of baby boomers has for expectations in their golf experience; course location and condition while the younger generations of X, Y, and Millennials are all about the experience of who they are playing with. This changes course operations, design, and the future of the game to cater to this upcoming generation of golfers. The remaining education agenda featured a diverse discussion from bunker liners and WOTUS, to allied updates, and of course networking on the golf course! Congratulations to the 2016 Donald Ross Award honoree Michael Bamberger and Greg Martin as he was introduced as ASGCA incoming president.

Are you signed up? We shared in our last issue details of our new partnership program with Caterpillar, Inc. and the GCBAA Foundation. Caterpillar Inc., and the Cat dealer network through their Cat Rental National Accounts Program has created an incentive program to further Caterpillar’s commitment to supporting the GCBAA, its Foundation, and the game of golf. This program will recognize the collective rental volume of GCBAA Members and reward a rebate of one half of one percent (0.5%) rental volume for our membership to the GCBAA and Foundation. To begin, you will need to sign and return the voluntary agreement identifying your interest in supporting the GCBAA Foundation and this program. Copies are available of the agreement by contacting the GCBAA Executive Office or GCBAA Member Chris Caccavale, Rental National Account Manager, Caterpillar Inc., or (570) 647-9157. Next, you simply continue to rent machines from a participating Cat dealer! Cat dealers and their Cat Rental Stores have nearly 800 locations where you can rent a full line of Cat machines including attachments, work tools and even non-Cat equipment such as pumps, utility carts and other golf course related equipment to complete your projects.

Justin Apel & Gary Brawley


GCBAA Offers New Member Benefit Program The GCBAA has been working on a program for individual members who might need specialized insurance coverage for their business. GCBAA has partnered with a proven agency and would like to invite you to check and see if it works for you and your business. INSPRO Insurance Agency, Inc. in Lincoln, Nebraska can easily compare your current coverage with their offerings as well as offer advice on making sure you have all of the coverages for the type of work you are involved in. This is a completely voluntary program and we know by comparing some of our members who have already participated in the program that nearly 50% savings are available on Errors and Omissions Insurance as well as Professional Liability coverage. Contact the GCBAA office for more information!

Donations pouring in for next month’s Foundation Auction & Raffle Dismal River Trip (Mullen, NE) - Ewing Irrigation Includes: (2) rounds of golf for a foursome at Dismal River Golf Club, (1) night of lodging at Dismal River Golf Club, and transportation from Arizona or Texas via Ewing Jet to and from North Platte. Disney Vacation Package - The Toro Company Package includes a 4-Day/3-night stay in one room at the Caribbean Beach, Coronado Springs, Port Orleans French Quarter or Port Orleans Riverside Resort (based upon availability), and four 4-Day Park Hopper Passes to the Magic Kingdom, Animal Kingdom, Epcot Center and Hollywood Studios. (2) Tickets to the 2016 Ryder Cup at Hazeltine National Golf Club in Chaska, MN (Saturday & Sunday) - Duininck Golf Tickets are International Pavilion tickets. Actual tickets will not be available until mid-late August. $500 Home Depot Gift Card - Fleetwood Services LLC

GCBAA Attends National Alliance for Accessible Golf Meeting

Scotty Cameron X7M Putter - Profile Products LLC

The National Alliance for Accessible Golf is an organization working to ensure the opportunity for all individuals with disabilities to play the game of golf. Formed in the summer of 2001, the Alliance is represented by major golf, recreation and therapeutic organizations in the United States including the Golf Course Builders Association of America. GCBAA serves on the Alliance Board of Directors and met with other board members after National Golf Day in May. The Club Managers Association of America in Alexandria, VA hosted the group for a daylong meeting. While the agenda consisted of the regular housekeeping items for any board, the group also discussed successes of the programs the Alliance oversees. The Alliance Grant Program has funded 96 locations since 2010. $722,050 in total amount funds have been awarded in 26 states helping approximately 9,000 individuals with disabilities enjoy the game of golf. These grants provide awareness, training, and funding for programs to help golfers with disabilities learn and transition into playing the game of golf. Keep up the good work NAAG!

GolfBuddy WT5 GPS Watch - Profile Products LLC


28-Day Rental of Rubber Tracked Skid-Steer Loader - Sunbelt Rentals Stihl Weedeater - Greenville Turf & Tractor

(4) Greg Norman Autographed Sticks for Kids Bags - Greg Norman Greg Norman Collection Straw Hat autographed by Greg Norman - Great White Shark Enterprises, LLC Greg Norman Collection Baseball Cap autographed by Greg Norman - Great White Shark Enterprises, LLC Photo autographed by Greg Norman - Great White Shark Enterprises, LLC Wags Grillin’ Rub Gift Basket - Dennis Wagner ISCO Goodie Basket - ISCO Industries, Inc. Backpack, Tervis Tumblers, Camelback water bottle, umbrella and Pro V1 golf balls Check the GCBAA website for updated items and to donate! 2015 Awards Auction and Dinner – Colorado Springs, CO

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A Foundation For Success: Tips for Building a USGA Green Subgrade feet at a time. The soil should be compacted at each stage to eliminate any air pockets and reduce the risk of settling. If the subgrade material is wet and resists proper compaction, one option is to remove the base soil and spread it out to dry. Once the soil dries, it can be replaced and used to build a firm subgrade. If the soils are inherently unstable, it may be necessary to lay geotextile fabric over the finished subgrade to prevent the gravel layer from sinking into the soil. However, do not cover drainage lines with geotextile fabric; install the fabric either beneath the pipes or between the drainage lines.

A quality subgrade is essential to successful green construction. (Photo Credit: Brett Hochstein)

Like the foundation of any structure, a properly built subgrade is critical to the successful construction of a putting green. In many cases, building the subgrade is the most difficult part of the process but it also is the most important. When building a green to USGA construction guidelines, extra care must be taken to create a quality foundation. This will allow subsequent construction steps to be accomplished effectively. The USGA Recommendations For a Method of Putting Green Construction state that the subgrade should conform to the general slope of the finished grade. Placing grade stakes on 20-foot intervals typically provides enough information to achieve the general contours of the finished green. However, in cases where extreme precision is required a more intensive staking scheme may be necessary. During shaping, every effort should be made to ensure that the subgrade is stable and unlikely to settle or shift. If the subgrade is built from fill material it is imperative to build in stages, or “lifts”. When building in lifts, the final subgrade elevation is reached 1.0-1.5


After the subgrade has been shaped, smaller equipment generally is used to smooth and further compact the subgrade. During this stage, any large clods (greater than one inch in diameter) should be eliminated and any low areas where water might accumulate should be filled. Cavity walls should be steep enough to prevent large differences in the depth of mix near the edge of the green. Vertical walls are easier to create when coring out an existing green, while sloped walls are more common when building a new green. A quality subgrade is essential to successful green construction; without it all future steps in the construction process will be compromised. For more information on putting green construction, refer to the USGA Green Section’s digital collections “Building the USGA Green: Tips for Success” and “A Guide to Constructing the USGA Putting Green”. Additional resources on putting green construction and other topics can be found on the Course Care section of

CMAA Tees Up Good Governance Through Regional Governance/Leadership Summits In April, CMAA announced the creation of regional, one-day summits designed to bring together a club’s General Manager/CEO and the Club President or a Board Member for cooperative education on club leadership and governance. The Governance/Leadership Summits will provide a structured environment to engage some of the best ideas and practices evident in clubs from around the country. This idea was born out of the successful Pre-Conference Workshop: Executive Leadership at a Higher Level, presented by Dick Kopplin and Kurt Kuebler, CCM, Kopplin & Kuebler, LLC. The full day workshop in San Diego, CA, united the club’s General Manager and President for education focusing on key success strategies. CMAA’s Senior Vice President of Professional Development, Jason Koenigsfeld, Ph.D., shared “Our members raved about this session, and expressed the need to bring this type of education to their boards in their local areas. We know it is difficult for board members to travel to our Conference, and thus, we created six regional and easily accessible workshops for 2016 and early 2017.” The first summit was held June 15, at Baltusrol Golf Club in Springfield, NJ, with more than 65 club General Managers and Board Members in attendance, and hosted by General Manager/COO Kevin P. Vitale, CCM. The summit provided a concentrated day of education, balancing theory and practice on the topic of Private Club Board Governance and Leadership. The day began with Dick Kopplin and Kurt Kuebler, CCM, of Kopplin & Kuebler, LLC, setting the stage for effective governance models and organizational structure. Kuebler explored multiple governance topics including organizational health, industry trends, leading club best practices, roles and responsibilities, term limits, board and committee orientations and board self-evaluations. Kopplin shared “Everyone committed to the Governance/ Leadership Summit concept truly believes this could be a game changer in the private club world. Based on the comments over the past few years from the CMAA

Pre-Conference Workshops, it has been evident that Club Presidents, in particular, are eager for this kind of information and education. The value of the summits is not only inherent in the educational offerings but the opportunity to network with other Club Presidents and General Manager/CEO to discuss best practices relevant for each participating club.” The Interactive Panel Discussion on Current Governance Challenges was facilitated by Tom Wallace, CCM, and included Vitale and John Reid, the Treasurer, Finance Chair and Board of Governor, Baltusrol Golf Club. After lunch and an attendee networking break, the focus moved to change and innovation management presented by Jeff McFadden, CCM, CCE, the CEO of the Union League of Philadelphia. McFadden tackled the difficulties of forward thinking to meet member needs, the evolution of the club industry, effective member engagement and how the use of technology can benefit the club. Next, CMAA CEO Jeff Morgan, FASAE, CAE, and Jason Koenigsfeld, dove into change and evolution and why clubs must evolve. The discussion focused on the importance of engagement of multigenerations of members, strategically setting up the board and datadriven decisions vs. emotional decision making. As well, Morgan explored several change strategy models – VUCA, Pestel and Competitive Forces. Dick Kopplin closed out the day with a focus on how General Managers and Board members can work together to building a long-lasting community and share the day’s key take-a-ways. Afterwards, attendees adjourned for more informal networking, hosted at Baltusrol Golf Club. Additional summits will be presented Desert Mountain Club in Scottsdale, AZ (August 12), Bent Tree Country Club in Dallas, TX (August 26), The Olympic Club in San Francisco, CA (September 12), Conway Farms Golf Club in Chicago, IL (September 20), and the Atlanta Athletic Club, Atlanta, GA (January 19, 2017). Additional sites are in development for 2017. For more information, please visit governancesummit/



NGCOA Embarking on a New Journey: The NGCOA is instituting a new strategic plan in order to become the most valuable business resource and advocate for golf course owners and operators The NGCOA recently completed the development of a new strategic plan, and we would like to share where we currently are. And because strategic planning is such a journey, as opposed to a race with a clear finish line, we’d also like to give you a sense of what’s to come. A new strategic plan often comes with the hiring of a new leader. But our purpose was more than that. We decided a new way forward was needed after watching the Great Recession impact your businesses. We saw the pressure course owners and operators were under to operate profitably. And we understood the new economy forced you to question the value of everything, including the value the NGCOA brought to your business. We now have a comprehensive plan designed to achieve our vision of being your most valuable business resource and advocate. It centers around three key efforts: education, advocacy and commerce. On the education front, we are already creating additional content to complement Golf Business while providing a deeper dive on subjects most important to you. This is taking shape in a robust offering of webinars and podcasts, at new educational events, and on information-sharing platforms like our highly-successful Accelerate, which in addition to its active listserv is already housing a full library of articles, whitepapers and more. In any form, you can be confident the information will be relevant, easy to access, pragmatic and actionable. In short, content that makes you smarter and more competitive. We are committing more than ever to protecting our members’ and the industry’s best interests. For the first time, the NGCOA is investing to become the leading advocate for golf courses not only on public policy issues, but on intra-industry influences affecting


your business. Nowhere is this more evident than in the recent hiring of a director of advocacy to lead this effort. Whether working with allied groups to fight regulatory threats or establishing standards to facilitate more favorable relationships with tee-time distributors, rest assured owners’ and operators’ collective voices are being heard. The NGCOA sees its role as being a partner facilitating business activity for members. Education and advocacy play roles, but there is a specific effort in our plan to build sound, progressive programs and services that enhance economic growth and vitality for your business and the industry at large. Not unlike a chamber of commerce, your association wants to assist in bringing you business. That can take many forms— the most obvious being by attracting and developing new players. But, new food-and-beverage programs, creating alternative uses for facilities and more are also key to success. The NGCOA team, led by our new director of commerce, will be developing and bringing these opportunities to members very soon. The strategic process is a journey. The best ones don’t end up on a bookshelf gathering dust, but executed daily and refined based on results. We’re prepared to do just that. Again, this plan was built by listening carefully to what members want and need. In doing so, the importance of listening and two-way conversations were once again reinforced. There’s no other way something as important as a strategic plan can be accomplished. For that matter, there’s no other way for the NGCOA to fulfill its mission. Joe Rice is the Chief Strategy Officer of the National Golf Course Owners Association.

The Changing Face of Junior Golf At this year’s Golf Business Symposium, NGF presented our latest findings on the junior golf market, a segment that is bigger and more diverse than many observers realize. And a group that should give us reasons to be optimistic about the game’s future. Today, the number of junior golfers—defined as individuals between the ages of 6 and 17 who played at least one round of golf in the past year—is nearly 3 million. Twenty years ago, in 1995, the number of junior golfers was also nearly 3 million. However, to assume nothing has changed is to miss a much more interesting story. Between 1995 and 2004, thanks in part to the presence and resonance of Tiger Woods, the number of junior golfers shot up, reaching a peak of 4.1 million. But beginning in 2005, and due largely to the global economic crisis, golf participation in this set fell steadily, bottoming out in 2011 at 2.4 million. Since then, we’ve seen healthy growth of 25%, back to 3 million in 2015. But more important than the overall number is the demographic make-up of those 3 million kids. Because in key areas, golf is making very important inroads. Females In 1995, girls made up only 17% of all junior golfers. Today, they total one third. To put that into perspective, the overall proportion of female golfers (age 6+) has hovered around 20 percent for as far back as NGF has tracked participation. Girls are getting, and accepting, the message that golf can be both welcoming and fun. This would seem to be the result of increased visibility of the LPGA and its young stars, as well as innovative programs like LPGA Girls Golf and possibly longer-term effects of Title IX. Non-Caucasians Similar to the growing proportion of junior girls who played in 2015, the number of non-white juniors has

grown as well. Twenty years ago, only 1 out of 17 junior golfers was non-Caucasian. Today, that number is nearly 1 out of 3. That’s an impressive rise and speaks to the broader appeal of professional golf, the power of institutions like The First Tee, inclusive programs across the country, and demographic changes in the U.S. population. Lest you think these two shifts in demographics also reflect shrinking economic power, today two-thirds of all junior golfers come from households making $75,000, a rise of nearly 20% from 20 years ago. More diversity has come with more spending power, and points toward a future golfing population that far more accurately mirrors the country’s population. Starting Younger And there’s another trend that could prove beneficial to the industry in the years to come. Today’s junior golfers are coming to the game younger. There are 50% more junior golfers under age 12 than there were in 1995. This is a good sign because research shows that the age of introduction positively affects the level of engagement. In NGF’s recent Millennial research, we found that Millennials who started playing before age 14 are nearly twice as likely to become Core golfers (those who play 8 or more rounds a year and account for more than 90% of total rounds and spending). There’s also a much stronger level of enjoyment among Millennials who start golf early: Four out of five say CONTINUED ON PAGE 26



they enjoy the game “very much” (that’s 20% higher than among those who started later) and 85% say they are “very likely” to continue playing as they get older.

The Value of ‘Thank You’ By Rhett Evans, CEO “Thank you” is a simple phrase that means so much. Yet, we often save it for special occasions or for someone who comes to our rescue in a time of need. For example, I know I don’t say “thank you” nearly enough to my wife, Colleen, who takes care of things at home while I’m on the road for GCSAA business.

Perceptions of the game are a strong indicator of enjoyment, frequency of play, volume of spending and likelihood to continue playing. NGF’s Millennial research showed that those who start younger have more positive perceptions about the game and fewer negative ones than those who picked up the game later. They strongly agree that golf is a good form of exercise, a great family activity, time well spent, a good way to enjoy the outdoors, even cool. Those younger adopters disagree more strongly with assertions that golf is dull or boring, bad for the environment, elitist and exclusionary, or is an old man’s sport. The industry should be encouraged by what we’re learning about the youngest golfers. Golf ’s efforts to attract more demographically diverse youngsters seem to be working, and with more kids picking up golf at a younger age, there is hope that this next generation of golfers will remain committed to the game throughout their lifetime. Still, we’ve only scratched the surface in terms of truly understanding today’s juniors. We need to delve more deeply into these positive signs, which is why the NGF will soon begin an in-depth study, the largest of its kind, on the Centennials (those born since 1997). You’ll be hearing more about the study, and our findings, in the months to come.


It’s not only an important sentiment to express in our personal relationships, though. It’s also essential to communicate appreciation in our professional roles. Research has shown that employees will work harder when their boss conveys appreciation for their efforts. Saying “thank you” is a sign of respect for another person, and it indicates you don’t take that person for granted. I hope each of you takes the time to thank your staff for a job well done. Another hope of mine is that golfers have taken the time to thank you for your work in the golf course management profession. After all, you take care of the biggest and most vital asset any golf facility has – the golf course. Perhaps you saw our “Thank a Golf Course Superintendent” commercials last year on Golf Channel. These spots featured some of the best golfers in the game offering the tag line, “If you love golf like I do, thank a golf course superintendent.” This year, GCSAA has added celebrities to the lineup of those voicing their thanks for the work you do every day. The new commercial features stars such as Grammy Award-winning entertainer Justin Timberlake, NFL Hall-of Famer John Elway and NBA Hall-of-Famer Charles Barkley in a 30-second spot airing now through October on Golf Channel. Along with the commercial, we’re running a sweepstakes to take full advantage of the momentum from the “Thank a Golf Course Superintendent” campaign. The winner will receive a trip for two to the 2016 American Century Celebrity Championship in July in Lake Tahoe, Nev. Get all the details at www.

new members We’ll promote the contest with TV and radio spots, as well as through print advertisements in GCM and affiliated chapter publications. If your chapter publication can help spread the word abou the campaign and contest, please contact our marketing and communications team for more information: Russell Sypowicz, associate director of marketing, at, or Craig Smith, director of communications and media relations, at csmith@ In the end, however, this campaign is not about the number of entries for a sweepstakes. Our goal is to educate golfers about all that superintendents do to provide enjoyment for those playing the game, and, hopefully to inspire them to reach out to you to say “thank you” in person. Several superintendents have shared with me and with our staff about just such instances at their facilities. One was Paul Latshaw, CGCS and director of grounds operations at Muirfield Village Golf Club in Dublin, Ohio, the host course for the Memorial Tournament each year. As you probably know, Muirfield is Jack Nicklaus’ pride and joy, and Nicklaus was the lead figure in the “Thank a Golf Course Superintendent” commercial last year. He went out of his way to support our campaign, and he was just as gracious when I had the chance to thank him in person. He knows how hard Latshaw works. “I always have been a Nicklaus fan, even to the point of working some for his design firm for two years early on in my career at Muirfield,” says Latshaw., who is in his 13th year aty Muirfield Village. “Mr. Nicklaus has always placed a value on agronomuy and the superintendent. I don’t know of any other design firm that has had agronomists on staff or as consultants. “So when Mr. Nicklaus took the time to support us and our profession, that meant the world to me. I’ve had members, too, take notice and stop to say, ‘thank you.’ It makes me proud to be a superintendent, and I appreciate all that GCSAA is doing to elevate our profession. So, ‘thank you’ GCSAA.” No, thank you, Paul. And thank you to all our members who work each day to deliver the best conditions they can for golfers while protecting the environment and our natural resources.


Atlantic Irrigation Specialties, Inc. 111 Lafayette Avenue N. White Plains, NY 10603 Phone: (800) 878-8873 Contact: Fred Rapp Email:

Atlantic Irrigation Specialties is a full service Rain Bird golf irrigation distributor supplying eight (8) states in northeast and Mid-Atlantic.

Blackburn Mfg. Co.

908 W. Hwy 275 Neligh, NE 68756 Phone: (800) 942-5816 Contact: Christa Blackburn-Schindler Email:

Blackburn Mfg. Co. is unmatched in quality marking flags with the best customer service in the industry for over 60 years. Marking Flags, Posting Signs, Inverted Marking Paint, All Flagging Tape, Measuring Tapes, Utility location, athletic field and pavement striping paint, safety zone supplies, barricade tape.


Diamond Golf International, Inc. 23753 Sonata Drive Murrieta, CA 92562-4662 Phone: (951) 696-0426 Contact: Salvador Rodriguez Email: Website:

Golf course construction, agronomist consulting, lake building, consulting design.


Tony Altum – A.S. Altum & Associates 10311 Towne Road Carmel, IN 46032 Phone: (317) 679-3285 Contact: Tony Altum Email: Website:

A.S. Altum & Associates has built a reputation in the golfing community as one of the world’s most trusted leaders in irrigation design and consulting.


MOVERS & SHAPERS 2016 Rossi Recipient Jim Moore Retires from USGA

West Coast Turf Offering Three New Varieties to Minimize Water Use West Coast Turf has expanded their inventory to include three new drought tolerant varieties, West Coast Native Bentgrass (Agrostis pallens), Hillside Native Fine Fescue, and Kurapia turf alternative groundcover for landscape and golf course use.

If you know the USGA Green Section, then you are bound to have had the pleasure of interacting with Jim or Kay Moore, both of whom retired on June 1, 2016. Both Jim and Kay joined the USGA Green Section in 1984 as director of the Green Section’s former Mid-Continent Region and as administrative assistant for the region, respectively. Jim Moore has worked in multiple functions over 32 years of dedicated service to the USGA. He was instrumental in leading and coordinating the collaboration of the 2004 revision of the USGA Recommendations For a Method of Putting Green Construction. Most recently, Moore led the USGA Green Section Education and Outreach program. During his tenure, Moore also provided years of dedicated service as a member of the USGA Green Section Turfgrass and Environmental Research Committee, a role in which he will continue after retiring. Both Jim and Kay have made lasting impressions on the USGA and the golf industry through their combined 64 years of service. They will be missed by their USGA colleagues and the thousands of golf courses they helped along the way.

“Native grasses are playing an important role in landscaping with water conservative plants, and Kurapia is something exciting and completely different than anything we have ever grown. We are constantly looking for the best varieties to minimize water use,“ said John Marman, West Coast Turf ’s vice president of sales and marketing. West Coast Native Bentgrass (Agrostis pallens), is a cool season grass with rich deep green color, and withstands light foot traffic. It requires half of the water of customary cool season turf, and half the mowing and maintenance. It can also be left un-mowed creating the floppy look of a natural meadow. Hillside Native Fine Fescue is perfect for relaxed landscapes and slope stabilization. It has a deep rootzone, thus making it extremely drought tolerant. It is slow growing with loose, slim leafed blades. Kurupira is a University of California tested drought tolerant turf alternative groundcover. Once established, it requires less water and little maintenance. It grows close to the ground and if left un-mowed, is covered with small white sterile flowers most of the year. “We like that not everyone has to have the exact same looking lawn or green areas. These new grasses and the groundcover allow for some diversity and creativity in landscape design. You don’t have to sacrifice your lawn to be environmentally responsible. Choose the right variety, and water wisely.” West Coast Turf is a full-service sod, stolonization and hydroseeding company with 5 offices throughout California and Arizona, and headquarters in Palm Desert, CA. West Coast Turf grows more than 30 varieties of natural turf.



movers & shapers Avendra Signs National Agreement with Jacobsen Agreement includes all U.S.-based Marriott properties

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Jacobsen®, a Textron Inc. (NYSE: TXT) company, recently signed new national account agreement with Avendra. The agreement with Avendra will allow all U.S.-based Marriott properties to purchase Jacobsen equipment at exclusive member pricing. Marriott currently has 18 properties with 24 golf course facilities in the United States.


Life is short. Sod it!

Avendra is North America’s leading procurement services provider serving the hospitality and lodging industries. Avendra customers gain access to contracts leveraging over $4 billion of annual purchases, expert advisory services and in-depth purchasing data and analysis. The company is headquartered in Rockville, MD and has regional offices throughout North America. For more information, please call (866)-AVENDRA or visit Avendra selected Jacobsen after the company spent several months testing and reviewing Jacobsen’s full line of turf maintenance equipment. “We’re very excited to be working with Avendra and Marriott properties,” said David Withers, President and CEO of Jacobsen. “We look forward to helping Marriott properties throughout the U.S. present superior conditions for their customers.”


August 1-3, 2016 Hyatt Regency Jersey City - Jersey City, NJ

2017 Summer Meeting

Does your company have exciting news to share? We’ll help you spread the word! Contact Samantha Huff: samantha_huf or call 402-476-4444

August 8-10, 2017 Omni Charlotte - Charlotte, NC

Future Golf Industry Show Sites

February 8-9, 2017 Orange County Convention Center - Orlando, FL February 7-8, 2018 Henry B. Gonzalez Convention Center - San Antonio, TX MAY 18, 2016 National Golf Day - Washington, D.C.


DEPENDABLE EQUIPMENT… WHEN & WHERE YOU NEED IT Designed exclusively for GCBAA members, The Cat Rental Store National Account Rental Program provides access to the industry’s largest selection of golf course building, renovation and maintenance equipment, including specialized attachments. More than 500 Cat Rental Store locations nationwide have a full range of equipment—Cat® and other leading brands— when and where you need them. To help you and your customers grow the game, a portion of every rental will be donated to the GCBAA Foundation to support the participation of underprivileged children in the Sticks for Kids Program. Hydraulic Excavators and Work Tools ForMini more information about the range of equipment and the Field Reference Guide special rental rates available to GCBAA members, please Email

301.6C 301.8C 302.5C 303C CR 303.5C CR 304C CR 305C CR

For Dealer Sales Personnel


CATRENTALSTORE.COM © 2016 Caterpillar. All Rights Reserved. CAT, CATERPILLAR, BUILT FOR IT, their respective logos, “Caterpillar Yellow,” the “Power Edge” trade dress as well as corporate and product identity used herein, are trademarks of Caterpillar and may not be used without permission.




Tap into our 50+ years of golf irrigation expertise.


10X Stronger than Schedule 80 Surge Guard™ golf fittings reduces the risk of crotch failure caused by water hammer and cyclic fatigue common with standard Sch 40 fittings in Golf Course and Commercial Irrigation systems. Now Available in 2½ inch Tee and 2½ inch 90°, 45° and 22½° Elbows

Install IsCO HDPE GOlf COursE systEms No water hammer issues. No over pressure problems. No spring turn-ons through cold, brittle pipe.



THANK YOU FOR MAKING US #1 ON TURF! Innovators in proven pumping solutions for 30 years


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