Golf Course Management

JUN 2018

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

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22 GOLF COURSE MANAGEMENT 06.18 impact that we're all making on the business of golf is something special." Ricardo has been helping his mother on the golf course for the past three years, and as high school gradua - tion nears, he is considering a career as a superintendent. Not only did he join Jennifer during her lobbying efforts on Capitol Hill during National Golf Day, but he also assisted during the Community Service Project on the National Mall that preceded the legislative activities. "At first, I was just looking for a job, and my mom was able to help me out," Ricardo says. "But then I found out how interesting it all was. Not many people know what it is or what it's about, but I've loved it. And everyone (at National Golf Day) has been so nice, willing to help me out, to talk about the profession, how to use equipment and things like that." Being a caretaker is nothing new to Jennifer. She's been driven by a desire to nurture and look after things as a parent, as a member of the military and as the owner/op - erator of a home day-care service. But while running that day-care facility out of her home near Fort Dix, N.J., she began looking for more, and joked with her neighbor Dan Mears, who was an assistant superintendent and is now a head superintendent, about getting a job at his course. "He didn't think it was a joke," she says. "He said, 'Sure thing.' I had grown up on a farm, was interested in this kind of work, and the home day-care thing had kind of run its course. So, he opened the door for me." Her passion for the work and a gentle nudge from John Huda, the now-retired superintendent at Fountain Green Golf Course at Fort Dix, soon led her to the turf program at Rutgers, and after a short break to care for her first grand - daughter, she was back on the golf course as the assistant at Makefield Highlands. When the superintendent there moved on for a regional superintendent position with the management company that operates Makefield Highlands, she was promoted into her current position. National Golf Day attracted nearly 200 participants from around the golf industry, most of whom are affiliated with GCSAA. A record-high 230 meetings were scheduled with members of Congress during the day to discuss golf's economic, environmental and social benefits. During the Community Service Project, more than 175 participants volunteered to beautify the National Mall. — Scott Hollister, GCM editor-in-chief The golf industry recently got its report card — and posted some pretty good marks. The 2016 U.S. Golf Economy Report — prepared by TEConomy Partners in agreement with We Are Golf — a collaborative effort among leading golf organizations, including GCSAA — found the game of golf directly drove $84.1 billion in economic activity across the United States in 2016. This includes core golf facility operational expenditures and capital investments along with golf-supported tourism and real estate activity. The golf industry supports $191.9 billion in total economic activity, 1.89 million jobs and more than $58 billion in compensation. On the Upswing Average revenue for the U.S.'s more than 15,000 golf facilities grew in 2016, generating $33.3 billion despite a net decline of 737 facilities since 2011. 33.3 billion The U.S. is home to half of the world's golf courses, and U.S. golf tourism scored more than $28 billion in 2016, making it the second-largest industry segment. 28 billion While new golf home construction recovered to $7.2 billion , it remains lower than 2005 pre-economic downturn levels. 7.2 billion On-course and off-course sales of golf equipment, apparel and media rose in 2016 — to $6 billion — compared to 2011, with strongest sales growth in the equipment category. 6 billion Jennifer (left) and Ricardo Torres monitor an aerifier during the Community Service Project on the National Mall. Photo by Scott Hollister

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