Golf Course Management

AUG 2014

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

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16 GOLF COURSE MANAGEMENT 08.14 I have mentioned this before in this forum, but much of what I have learned in my life about the value of service and of giv - ing back to others came from the example set by my parents. That's no great revelation, I realize. All of us look upon our parents and those who cared for and raised us as our primary role models for all that we become in life. But the lessons my parents taught me and my siblings about charity, about helping others and about doing the right things tend to be the ones that reso - nate most clearly and most frequently for me, especially as they relate to my service to the GCSAA Board of Directors and the role I'm privileged to play in many of our association's most philanthropic endeavors. Most recently, I was reminded of those valuable lessons as GCSAA and the Environ - mental Institute for Golf ramped up the 2014 edition of the Rounds 4 Research auctions. Because whether consciously or not, those participating in the auction were helping an effort to give back to the game we all love in a way that would have made my folks proud. As you probably know, Rounds 4 Research offers rounds of golf and unique golf experi - ences for auction with proceeds benefting turfgrass research efforts. The frst round of auctions for 2014, which took place in June during the U.S. Open and U.S. Women's Open, sold more than 600 rounds of golf and netted $115,000. That's a 7 percent increase over last year, meaning that much more fex - ibility in the pursuit of turfgrass research ef- forts on both the local and national levels. And in the spirit of charity beginning at home — another virtue instilled in us by my parents — most of that fexibility will be en - joyed by Rounds 4 Research's fundraising partners. These local GCSAA chapters and turfgrass organizations have assisted in the so - licitation of rounds for the auction, with re- search efforts most important to their local golf communities being the primary benef - ciary of their efforts. This month provides another opportu - nity to help our industry help itself as the second Rounds 4 Research auction of 2014 takes place during the PGA Championship (for more information, visit www.rounds4 research.com). It also helps to shed some light on the myriad other ways GCSAA and the EIFG give back to the game of golf and why your contributions to these efforts are so nec - essary and so valuable. For example, one of the prime benefcia - ries of monies raised by the EIFG are schol- arship efforts, which have been a focus of GCSAA's philanthropic organization since its original founding as the GCSAA Scholarship and Research Fund in 1955. Programs such as the GCSAA Student Essay Contest, the Dr. James Watson Fellowship Program and the GCSAA Legacy Awards, for example, all offer stark proof of how the work of the EIFG di - rectly benefts the golf course superintendents of both today and tomorrow. Advocacy and GCSAA's government rela - tions efforts also see direct benefts from the funds raised by the EIFG. Much of this work might go unnoticed by many members of our association, but I can assure you that by tak - ing steps to defend the industry and superin- tendents against proposed expansions to the scope of the Clean Water Act or supporting reasonable immigration reform that takes the needs of small businesses into consideration, for example, your association is ensuring that you and your colleagues receive a fair shake among local, state and national legislators. It's work that wouldn't be possible without the re - sources of the EIFG. So whether it's your support of Rounds 4 Research or the simple writing of an annual donation check to the EIFG, know that those actions are making a difference and helping to ensure the future health and vitality of the game of golf, not to mention making your par - ents very, very proud. Keith A. Ihms, CGCS, is the golf course maintenance man- ager at Bella Vista (Ark.) Village and a 33-year member of GCSAA. Keith A. Ihms, CGCS keithai79@gmail.com Paying it forward As you probably know, Rounds 4 Research offers rounds of golf and unique golf experiences for auction with proceeds benefting turfgrass research efforts. (president's message)

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