Monthly Archives: May 2020

Golf Industry Debuts “Golf and Social Distancing” PSAs Featuring Steph Curry, Matt Kuchar and Nelly Korda to Help America Get Back2Golf Responsibly

by PGA

ST. AUGUSTINE, Fla. (May 18, 2020) – As America gets “Back2Golf,” a new 30-second PSA, “Golf and Social Distancing” starring NBA superstar Steph Curry, nine-time PGA Tour winner Matt Kuchar and three-time LPGA Tour winner Nelly Korda, will guide golfers on responsible ways to play the game. Back2Golf is an industry-wide collaboration to provide operational guidelines, designed in three phases and aligned with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), for the responsible playing of golf through the COVID-19 pandemic.
The video PSAs complement a suite of golfer-focused posters and social-media friendly assets that have been distributed across the game by WE ARE GOLF, a coalition of allied golf organizations that are leading the responsible return to golf — including the PGA of America, PGA TOUR, National Golf Course Owners Association (NGCOA), Golf Course Superintendents Association of America (GCSAA), Club Management Association of America (CMAA), LPGA and USGA.
The spot began appearing over the weekend on digital and broadcast outlets, including CBS, Golf Channel and CBS Sports Network, and will continue to circulate across the golf industry’s media platforms. Led by the PGA of America and created by Ideas United of Atlanta, the informative public service announcements stress the importance of social distancing practices that should be kept top of mind while playing golf.
Among the important messages delivered are the health and recreational benefits of golf that can be enjoyed while now applying social distancing. Golfers are instructed to always stay six feet apart, stay home if they’re sick, and avoid large gatherings anywhere on the course. They are encouraged to “try thumbs ups and fist pumps, not handshakes and fist bumps” and “when in doubt, just don’t touch, and wash your hands!” Golfers are also instructed to mark their balls clearly and to wear a cloth facial covering when taking a lesson. Curry closes by asking everyone to “respect your fellow golfers, and let’s be grateful for every swing.”
“We play the game for different reasons but one of the things that is best about golf is the recreational health and wellness benefits that can be enjoyed in a socially distanced environment,” said PGA President Suzy Whaley. “As we adapt social distancing to the golf course, golfers will learn from these PSAs how to smartly apply it throughout the game. We’re proud to debut these important and informative spots. Play responsibly, so we can all enjoy golf together.”
The campaign, which will also include a longer-form, 60-second spot that debuts later this spring, will turn to LPGA and PGA TOUR players, as well as notable celebrities who are passionate about golf, to provide some social distancing tips.
“The industry is coming together during this time in many ways, including the development and airing of these PSAs, as a way to promote a responsible return to golf,” said Greg McLaughlin, CEO, World Golf Foundation, who oversees WE ARE GOLF. “We appreciate the PGA of America’s leadership and for the celebrities who leaned in to help us present this important message to the golf community.”
The Back2Golf plan is a specific, three-phased approach to golf that aligns with the federal government’s broader plan to re-open the economy. Each phase includes operational protocols when it comes to social distancing, the sanitation of physical facilities and the health of staff members.

Future Sites of the PGA Championship

by PGA


102nd PGA Championship
TPC Harding Park
San Francisco, California
May 2020
103rd PGA Championship
Kiawah Island Golf Resort
Ocean Course
Kiawah Island, South Carolina
May 2021
104th PGA Championship
Trump National Golf Club
Bedminster, New Jersey
May 2022
105th PGA Championship
Oak Hill Country Club
East Course
Pittsford, New York
May 2023
106th PGA Championship
Valhalla Golf Club
Louisville, Kentucky
May 2024
107th PGA Championship
Quail Hollow Club
Charlotte, NC
May 2025
108th PGA Championship
Aronimink Golf Club
Newtown Square, Pennsylvania
May 2026
109th PGA Championship
PGA Frisco
Frisco, Texas
May 2027
110th PGA Championship
The Olympic Club
Lake Course
San Francisco, California
May 2028
111th PGA Championship
Baltusrol Golf Club
Lower Course
Springfield, New Jersey
May 2029
112th PGA Championship
Southern Hills Country Club
Lower Course
Tulsa, Oklahoma
113th PGA Championship
Congressional Country Club
Blue Course
Bethesda, Maryland
May 2031
116th PGA Championship
PGA Frisco
Frisco, Texas
May 2034

PGA WORKS to Host First-Ever Virtual Career Workshop

by PGA
PGA WORKS, PGA REACH, and AIG will host the first-ever PGA WORKS Virtual Career Workshop on May 21st, 2020.
The event will present individuals interested in a career in golf with the ultimate opportunity to connect with business and gold industry leaders to learn first-hand how to navigate through the current job market during these unprecedented times. Business experts will present on the following topics:
  • Owning Your Job Search In Uncertain Times presented by AIG
  • At-Home Networking Strategies presented by AIG
  • Career Readiness Post COVID-19
  • Personal Branding
Panelists Include:
Host – Jonathan Coachman, Golf Channel, WWE, PGA TOUR Live Sportscaster
Sandy Cross, Chief People Officer, PGA of America
John Easterbrook, PGA, Chief Membership Officer, PGA of America
Suzy Whaley, PGA, President of the PGA of America
Arjun Chowdri, Chief Innovation Officer, PGA of America
Bill Whaley, National Director of Golf Operations, PGA TOUR
Nerissa Robinson, Manager of Diversity & Talent, PGA TOUR
DeAngelo Simmons, CEO of BDSSports & Core4
Dee Robinson, PGA REACH Trustee
Lamell McMorris, PGA REACH Trustee
Ulonda Crawford Eurey, Senior HR Business Partner, AIG
Freda Lee, Senior VP of Relationship Management, AIG
Yarmon Kennedy, VP of Strategic Planning, AIG
Kevin Hogan, AIG

LPGA Tour Launches LPGA eTour Live with WGT by TopGolf

By LPGA Communications


The Ladies Professional Golf Association (LPGA) announced today the launch of LPGA eTour Live, a match-play esports competition in an exclusive partnership with World Golf Tour (WGT) by Topgolf. Eight LPGA and Symetra Tour players will play head-to-head in a series of seven nine-hole, online matches twice a week beginning Wednesday, May 13, culminating with a championship match on Wednesday, June 3. All matches will take place at 2 p.m. EDT and will stream live on LPGA and Topgolf digital platforms.
Below is the LPGA eTour Live on WGT schedule with the following players:


Wednesday, May 13: Match 1 – Jessica Korda vs. Nelly Korda
Friday, May 15: Match 2 – Angel Yin vs. Lizette Salas
Wednesday, May 20: Match 3 – Jenny Shin vs. Tiffany Joh
Friday, May 22: Match 4 – Lucy Li vs. Jane Park
Wednesday, May 27: Semifinal – Winners of Matches 1 & 2
Friday, May 29: Semifinal – Winners of Matches 3 & 4
Wednesday, June 3: Championship: Winners of Matches 5 & 6
“We are excited for this partnership with WGT and Topgolf to present an entertaining and alternative golf experience for all fans alike during a time when many are starved for competition,” said Brian Carroll, the LPGA’s Senior Vice President of Global Media Distribution. “This new endeavor is a creative way to showcase our LPGA and Symetra Tour players in an innovative online format, thanks to WGT and its incredibly realistic video game technology.”
“With a heightened focus on offering innovative, virtual entertainment and bringing people together during this time, WGT is honored to partner with the LPGA to present these live eTour events. WGT’s ability to provide the best esports golfing platform combined with the LPGA’s unique series of competitions will create a powerful experience for players all over the world who can truly immerse themselves in the competition,” said Lincoln Silver, Vice President of Business Development for Topgolf Media.
The first match between Jessica Korda and Nelly Korda will feature Congressional Country Club’s Blue Course, home to the 2022 and 2027 KPMG Women’s PGA Championship. Players can choose from numerous famed courses in the WGT portfolio, including the Old Course at St Andrews (host of the 2007 and 2013 AIG Women’s British Open), Oakmont Country Club (1992 and 2010 U.S. Women’s Open) and Pinehurst No. 2 (2014 U.S. Women’s Open), as well as future U.S. Women’s Open venues Erin Hills (2025), the Lake Course at The Olympic Club (2021) and Pebble Beach Golf Links (2023).
The matches will stream live on the WGT TwitchYouTube and Facebook accounts, LPGA’s TwitterFacebookYouTube accounts and, and Discovery’s GOLFTV Twitter and Facebook accounts, and will be available via VOD on Golf Channel’s YouTube and GOLFTV’s Henni Zuel and Golf Channel’s Tom Abbott will add commentary during the Wednesday matches, with Golf Channel’s Karen Stupples commentating on Fridays.

2002 PGA Champion Rich Beem Playing to Raise Funds for Golf Emergency Relief Fund

by PGA

The PGA Championship holds a special place in the heart of 2002 winner Rich Beem & he’s celebrating the championship this week by playing 72 holes to raise money for the Golf Emergency Relief Fund.
Beem posted a video to his Instagram Monday to share just how special his bond with the PGA Championship is and how he’s stepping up to help those affected by COVID-19.
Since he’ll have to wait until August to tee it up at TPC Harding Park, Beem will play spend his week playing four rounds at UT Golf Club in Austin, Texas, and donate $50 for every birdie & $100 for every eagle he makes.
To learn more about the Golf Emergency Relief Fund, visit

Woods, Mickelson, QBs to Donate $10 million to Virus Relief

By Associated Press


HOBE SOUND, Fla. (AP) — The next match involving Tiger Woods and Phil Mickelson involves a $10 million donation for COVID-19 relief efforts, along with plenty of bragging rights in a star-powered foursome May 24 at Medalist Golf Club.
Turner Sports announced more details Thursday for “The Match: Champions for Charity,” a televised match between Woods and Peyton Manning against Mickelson and Tom Brady.
Medalist is where Woods plays when he’s at home. Manning and Brady said they have played there before — Manning running out of golf balls before reaching the 18th, Brady posting a 106.
The format will be better ball for the front nine and modified alternate shot on the back nine, meaning both players hit tee shots and they take turns from there.
It will be simulcast on May 24 at 3 p.m. EDT on TNT, TBS, truTV and HLN, along with pre-match coverage available on the Bleacher Report app.
WarnerMedia and the four players will collectively make a charitable donation of $10 million to benefit various relief efforts locally and nationally. Turner said the match includes a partnership with the “All In Challenge,” an initiative that provides food for those in need.
Mickelson beat Woods in a playoff under the lights in Las Vegas over Thanksgiving weekend in 2018. This time, they are bringing in two of the NFL’s greatest quarterbacks to add to the entertainment.
The announcement came with a video interview by TNT’s Ernie Johnson of the four players, in which Brady said he wanted Woods as a partner until Manning’s father called to switch the teams.
The match will be held one week after live golf returns to television for the first time since the coronavirus pandemic shut down the PGA Tour and other tours around the world. Rory McIlroy and Dustin Johnson will play a charity match against Rickie Fowler and Matthew Wolff at Seminole Golf Club, one of Florida’s most famous courses that will have a televised event for the first time.

Tee It Up in Charleston for the 2021 PGA Championship

by PGA


Charleston, South Carolina — voted America’s #1 Small City, nine years and counting. Where world-class golf courses are situated on breathtaking coastal terrains, ranging from true links style to tight wooded Lowcountry layouts.
Whether you’re looking to immerse yourself in a rich coastal culture, hop on a historic tour, splash in the waves or feast on Southern flavors, you’ll find what you are looking for in Charleston in May during your visit to the 2021 PGA Championship at The Ocean Course at Kiawah Island Golf Resort.
To help you plan your schedule next May, we wanted to provide you with a few schedules to consider…

  • Begin your morning on Kiawah Island at the PGA Championship before visiting the Angel Oak Tree on Johns Island on your way to walk the Ravenel Bridge to catch a glimpse of the Charleston sunset.
  • Start your day with a sunrise stroll down The Battery and stop for a flavorful, Southern brunch on the peninsula before spending the afternoon on Kiawah Island at the PGA Championship. Head downtown for a late dinner on King Street and rooftop drinks.
  • Wake up to the surf of Folly Beach. Grab lunch in this local, seaside town before watching the world’s best golfers compete in the 2021 PGA Championship on Kiawah Island. On your way out of town, stop by Bohicket Marina for a bite to eat on the water while enjoying a Charleston sunset.

  • Wander the cobblestone streets of Charleston in search of your dream historic home, taking in the sights of Rainbow Row and King Street. Cruise to Kiawah Island in the afternoon and saunter around The Ocean Course in pursuit of your favorite golfer’s autograph at the PGA Championship.
  • Hit the golf course early at PGA Championship then head to Shem Creek for an oceanfront happy hour. End your day with a sunset cruise and set sail on Charleston’s harbor.

Catch Up With PGA WORKS Collegiate Golfers Abigail Willcoxon & Ziggy Nathu

By Charles Dillahunt


PGA WORKS recently had virtual chats with a pair student-athletes from the Collegiate Championship who have had success at the event to discuss what separates the championship from your average college golf tournament.
PGA WORKS is a strategic initiative, designed to diversify the golf industry’s workforce. It’s signature event, the PGA WORKS Collegiate Championship, annually hosts diverse student-athletes attending HBCU’s and other minority serving institutions for championship play at PGA Golf Club in Port St. Lucie, Fl.
Ziggy Nathu of The University of British Columbia was the 2019 Men’s Individual Division champion. He won the event by making a forty foot eagle putt on the first playoff hole. Now a professional on the Vancouver Golf Tour, hear how the PGA WORKS Collegiate Championship prepared him to become a professional golfer.
Abigail Willcoxon is a senior golfer at the University of Texas A&M Kingsville, the 2019 runner up in Women’s Team Division. Hear what her thoughts are on the event, and what it takes to have success in this Championship.
For more on the PGA WORKS Collegiate Championship, visit

“My Golf Journey: A Celebration of PGA Professionals” to air Saturday, May 9


PALM BEACH GARDENS, Fla. (May 6, 2020) – Fourteen PGA Members and one PGA Section—reflecting the best of the PGA of America as innovators, leaders and achievers— will be featured in a nationwide one-hour CBS special, “My Golf Journey: A Celebration of PGA Professionals,” which airs on Saturday, May 9, at 2 p.m. ET.
Narrated by CBS Sports golf anchor Jim Nantz, the program showcases the PGA Members, along with the South Florida PGA Section, that were honored during the 2019 season. Headlining the list are: PGA Golf Professional of the Year Eric Eshleman, PGA, Director of Golf at the Country Club of Birmingham (Alabama); and PGA Teacher of the Year Kevin Kirk, PGA, Director of Golf Instruction at The Woodlands (Texas) Country Club.
“As the game of golf reopens across the country, we are proud to highlight the impact our national award winners make on a daily basis,” said PGA President Suzy Whaley. “It is a point of pride to work with CBS Sports to showcase how they make a difference in the lives of people both on and off the course, from top Tour players to everyday golfers to our nation’s heroes.”
Eshleman, a 24-year PGA Member, earned the highest annual honor given to a PGA of America Professional. A former president of the Alabama-NW Florida PGA Section, Eshleman has both mentored and set benchmarks as a coach at the Country Club of Birmingham. He oversees one of the largest junior golf programs in the country. While he currently coaches former U.S. Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice and European Tour player Paul Dunne, his students over the years have also included Graeme McDowell and Patton Kizzire.
Kirk is a 26-year PGA Member and a PGA Master Professional, as well as a GOLF Magazine Top 100 Teacher in America. His student roster includes three-time United States Ryder Cup Team Member and 2018 Masters Champion Patrick Reed; LPGA TOUR star and Major Champion Lexi Thompson; and three-time PGA TOUR winner Jhonattan Vegas. Kirk has coached five OIympians and is an advocate for the PGA of America in the advancement of the American Development Model.
Among the national award honorees featured in the broadcast are the inspiring stories of Judy Alvarez, PGA/LPGA and Randy Jones, PGA.
Alvarez is PGA Teaching Professional at Monarch Country Club in Palm City, Florida, and PGA Head Professional at Sunken Meadow Golf Course at Kings Park, New York. The 2019 PGA Patriot Award recipient, she began her career coaching the physically challenged and later expanded her work to include military veterans through PGA HOPE (Helping Our Patriots Everywhere). Alvarez is a member of the South Florida PGA Section, which in 2019 received its first Herb Graffis Award, recognizing a Section for extraordinary and exemplary contributions in Player Development.
Jones, the South Texas Territory Manager for Club Car in Richmond, Texas, was presented the 2019 Deacon Palmer Award for his courageous battle with Stage IV melanoma. Today, he is an inspirational spokesperson in creating public awareness for the dangers of skin cancer.
The 2019 Women’s PGA Professional Player of the Year presented by OMEGA Joanna Coe, PGA, of Baltimore Country Club, who played on the winning inaugural 2019 U.S. Women’s PGA Cup Team and won the 2019 PGA Women’s Stroke Play Championship is highlighted for her playing achievements.
Similarly, both 2019 PGA Professional Player of the Year presented by OMEGA Ryan Vermeer, PGA, of Happy Hollow Club, in Omaha, Nebraska, and 2019 Senior PGA Professional Player of the Year presented by OMEGA Bob Sowards, PGA, of Kinsale Golf and Fitness Club, in Powell, Ohio, are also featured for their playing accomplishments. Vermeer, the 2018 PGA Professional Champion; and Sowards, the 2018 PGA Senior Professional Champion, were both members of the victorious 2019 U.S. PGA Cup Team.
2019 PGA National Award recipients appearing in “My Golf Journey: A Celebration of PGA Professionals”:
PGA Golf Professional of the Year
Eric Eshleman, PGA, Country Club of Birmingham (Ala.)
PGA Teacher of the Year
Kevin Kirk, PGA, The Woodlands (Texas) Golf Performance Center
Bill Strausbaugh Award
David Reasoner, PGA, The Ridgewood Country Club – Paramus, N.J.
Horton Smith Award
Todd Sones, PGA, Todd Sones Impact Golf – Vernon Hills, Ill.
Deacon Palmer Award
Randy Jones, PGA, Club Car – Richmond, Texas
Patriot Award
Judy Alvarez, PGA/LPGA, Monarch Country Club – Palm City, Fla. and Sunken Meadow Golf Course – Kings Park, NY
PGA Player Development Award
Liz Cooper, PGA/LPGA, Senior Director of Membership & Events, LPGA Amateur Golf Association – LPGA Headquarters – Daytona Beach, Fla.
PGA Youth Player Development Award
Scott Wilson, PGA, Bay Meadows Family Golf Course – Traverse City, Mich.
Women’s PGA Professional Player of the Year
Joanna Coe, PGA, Baltimore Country Club
PGA Professional Player of the Year
Ryan Vermeer, PGA, Happy Hollow Club, Omaha, Neb.
Senior PGA Professional Player of the Year
Bob Sowards, PGA, Kinsale Golf and Fitness Club, Powell, Ohio
PGA Merchandiser of the Year-Resort Category
Sara Muldoon, PGA, Hershey (Pa.) Country Club
PGA Merchandiser of the Year-Public Category
Duncan Simms, PGA, Oak Creek G.C. – Irvine, Calif.
PGA Merchandiser of the Year-Private Category
Scott Kirkwood, PGA, Ocean Reef Club – Key Largo, Fla.
Herb Graffis Award
South Florida PGA Section

Digital Golf Collective Co-Founder Jess McAlister Bringing Out Golf’s Cool Side

By Carly Grenfell

Jess McAlister came out of the womb ready to work—so much so that she dragged her feet getting a college degree. Although she grew up on a golf course and has always played the sport, she didn’t necessarily have her eyes on working in the industry.
With a plethora of agency experience under her belt through college and beyond, she first launched McAlister Co. where she advises brands, talent, and agency partners alike. Her latest endeavor, Digital Golf Collective, combines her passion for golf, entertainment, lifestyle and sports marketing all in one. Jess McAlister spotted a gap in the market and has hit the ground running to bring it to life ever since.

Having now worked with companies like Mastercard, United, AT&T, Amazon, Adidas, Lexus and countless others, Jess McAlister is helping change the digital landscape in golf through Digital Golf Collective. Along with talent management, DGC is also capitalizing on social media management, brand strategy, public relations and media distribution.
Her experiences, not to mention creative prowess, have helped social media influencers like Tisha Alyn, Coach Rusty, Nikki B. the ever popular PGA Memes and many other golf personalities not only grow their following, but add value to their personal brands. DGC goes beyond golf tradition to position themselves as the forefront of influence.