Golf Course Management

OCT 2013

Golf Course Management magazine is dedicated to advancing the golf course superintendent profession and helping GCSAA members achieve career success.

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Page 21 of 129

Inside GCM by Scott Hollister When family comes first You don't have to work in the golf course management industry very long to learn just how important the concept of family is to this business. In both a fgurative and literal sense, family forms the foundation for what golf course superintendents and those who support them do every day. Whether it's a crew of unrelated professionals coming together in the pursuit of a common goal or a father introducing his son to a career that will last a lifetime, family clearly matters in this industry. Over the last several months, in both my travels around the country and my role in helping prepare each issue of GCM, I've been lucky enough to see the vital role family plays from an up-close-and-personal vantage point. In early August at Oak Hill Country Club in Rochester, N.Y., I witnessed a crew of more than 100, from all over the country and from golf courses big and small, come together and, in the span of a week, form an uncommon bond as they prepared that club's East Course for the playing of the 2013 PGA Championship. Oak Hill's Jeff Corcoran is a fne case study in the value of family in golf course management. On the literal side, he drew constant support during PGA week from his wife, children and immediate family, including a brother who had frst introduced him to the business. He also leaned on his more fgurative family in the business, most notably Paul R. Latshaw, the patriarch of one of the industry's most legendary families, and his son, Paul B. Latshaw. Speaking of the junior Latshaw, he played a prominent role in the last issue of GCM as we previewed the work of the crew at Muirfeld Village Golf Club in Dublin, Ohio, as they prepared to host this month's President's Cup competition. And fnally, this month's GCM profles one of the most unique family combinations that I've encountered in 15 years of working in golf course management: the story of the Nettles family and their uninterrupted run in charge of maintenance at one of Texas' most storied layouts, Dallas Athletic Club. Between the father, Clyde, and the son, Kevin, the Nettles have served in the role of superintendent at DAC since 1971, a span of 42 years. Their unquestioned dedication to the club and their long-standing insistence on doing the hard work themselves whenever possible has made this family an institution at the facility that hosted the 1963 PGA Championship, and we're honored to give that institution some national rec18 GCM October 2013 ognition in the story that begins on Page 52 of this issue. Clearly, golf course management isn't the only business that showcases the benefts of family, whether real or metaphorical. There are plenty of family-run insurance agencies, furniture stores, heating and cooling companies. And workers in lots of jobs beneft from the backing and camaraderie of others, even if those others aren't related to them in any way, shape or form. But I've worked for other companies, worked in other industries. And I can tell you honestly that the tenets of family shine just as brightly, if not brighter, among superintendents In both a fgurative and literal sense, family forms the foundation for what golf course superintendents and those who support them do every day. than they do in other felds. I just feel lucky that I've had the opportunity to join that family, and share the stories of those families through the pages of this magazine. GCM Scott Hollister ( is GCM's editor-in-chief.

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