Please indicate past awards won/recognitions:
PGA Section Teacher of the Year, GRAA Top 100 Growth of the Game Teaching Professional, Golf Digest Best in State, Other (Indicate specific awards below in 3-a)
Other awards won:
• Received the Carolinas Section Teacher of the Year – 2016 • Named Titleist Difference Maker – 2016 • HHIPGA Teacher of the Year – 2015 • Voted #6 teacher in South Carolina by Golf Digest – 2013 and 2014 • HHIPGA Golf Professional of the year – 2007, 2010 & 2013 • Elizabethton High School Sports Hall of Fame – 2012 • Voted #8 teacher in South Carolina by Golf Digest – 2011 and 2012 • Received the Carolinas Section Golf Professional of the Year – 2011 • Received the Carolinas Section President’s Plaque – 2010 • Received the Carolinas Section Bill Strausbaugh Award – 2007 • Voted #2 teacher in South Carolina by Golf Digest – 2007and 2008
Total number of individual lessons given per year:
Total number of individual clinics given per year:
Please indicate any Growth of the Game initiatives your facility/academy has launched over the past year (please give specifics on such programs):
I enjoy creating unique events for our membership to encourage new players to come out to the course. We have started a Chip Shot tournament that combines skeet shooting in the morning and 9 holes of golf in the afternoon. It is a twist on our wildly popular Ten-Go (tennis & golf) tournament that has grown steadily over the past 20 years. It is a great way to bring players to the course while giving them a new challenge. Creative events such as these allow for a wide range of players, including new or higher handicap players, a chance to get out on the course and have fun. I believe it is imperative in growing the game to keep it fun as well as challenging. By allowing higher handicappers to play with lower handicappers it will boost their confidence and encourage them to keep coming out and becoming involved in more events and daily play We are a private facility and are limited to how many players we can bring in from the outside. Our facility provides a place to play for college and high school teams on open days. At Old Tabby Links we host 2 charity events a year at no cost to the charity. We also donate all of our used range balls to First Tee and High School golf teams. I have started a program with our members in which we ask them to donate used bags, clubs and shoes to the Boys and Girls Club.
Please share any programming you have made to keep your customers & students engaged:
I have created a few different teaching programs that have been implemented. I began a personal exercise program to increase my own strength and flexibility. My new found passion spread quickly to many of my students. My journey has led me from working out solely for myself to training with the Titleist Performance Institute (TPI) where I have learned to provide the ultimate golf experience. Having completed TPI levels 1 & 2, I now assess the whole golfer, from their equipment to their swing to their own body mechanics. I believe that by helping the golfer stay healthy and active in their own fitness will lead to an extended golfing life for them. As our membership ages, it is my intent to keep them constantly progressing with their game. Instead of watching their abilities lessen, it is my goal to them gain or maintain their distance and accuracy while remaining confident in their game even as they age. I have formed a weekly TPI work out class to assist those members in the program as well as those interested in learning more about the work outs. These exercise regimens differ from regular work outs because of the focus of golf particular stretches and strength. To gather the Members in a group setting and work together I have found that they are more likely to stay with the program and are seeing wonderful results, physically and on the golf course. Two of the best result stories are that one gentleman due to increased range of motion and flexibility has quickly gone from a 17 handicap down to a 10, and the other gentleman has gone from being an accomplished club player to becoming #1 Ranked Super Senior in the country.
I offer a free kids camp the first week of July. For the free kids camp I have created a game called golf /baseball. We have players in the infield and outfield to keep everyone involved. Using a tennis ball and a snag wedge each team gets 3 outs. This allows the kids to work on their golf swing and fitness while having fun.
Another way that I stay in touch with my students is through video assessment. I will regularly receive a call from one of our members while they are away from Spring Island, saying that they are playing terribly and need help right away! I will ask them to go out and video themselves on the range and email it to me so that I can see exactly what is going on with their posture/stance/swing. It has been a great tool for staying in touch while the members are away for the season or a confidence booster if they are playing in a tournament. I can give them a few tips to get them back in line and everyone is happy. I provide this teaching tool free of charge and they are always so thankful and continue to book lessons when back on Island.