Mon, Jan 25, 2016: As I was on my flight home from team meetings and training in south Florida, my only regret was that I would miss the start of the PGA Merchandise Show and the beginning of our Centennial  Celebration.

One of the best parts of the kickoff to the Celebration was the #ThePGAPro hashtag concept. Seeing images (with Jordan Spieth and Cameron Doan, PGA) where the best players, PGA professionals and celebrities are showing gratitude for the investment a PGA professional has made (or still making) in their lives is very cool and heartwarming. On the surface, it could end there as a feel-good concept that shows the power of a PGA professional to impact people in countless ways.

As I tend to do, I ask that you and I go beyond the hashtag, beyond the feel-good and think about the true value and true opportunity that is wrapped up in #ThePGAPro concept. Every day, I live out the impact of the PGA professionals and their investment in me by paying it forward as I invest myself (and some of them) in others, including PGA professionals.

MY #ThxPGAPro List:

  • Gus Jones, PGA
  • Len Dumas, PGA
  • Shim LaGoy, PGA
  • Steve Bowen, PGA
  • Greg Manley, PGA
  • Doug Hixson, PGA
  • Rich Richeson, PGA
  • Chris Thomas, PGA
  • Ken Morton, Sr., PGA
  • Bob Young, PGA
  • Jeff Ellison, PGA
  • Cameron MacGregor, PGA
  • Sara Griffin, PGA
  • Ron Locke, PGA

The names on my list are all still mentors and coaches of mine. Some are my heroes from when I picked up the game, some are fairly recent. For some, the standards they set for themselves are the ones I borrowed for my life, my professional approach. For others, the thanks is in the way they make me grow, develop and think today so that I can be more effective in my role here in the PNWPGA Section. Some of them inspire me by their amazing ingenuity, resourcefulness and more. I’m sure I’ve accidentally omitted someone from that list above, and equally sure the list will be growing. It’s gotta be, or else I am going backwards.

As I often find myself doing. I have some questions for you – for me?
Who’s on your list?
Who SHOULD BE on your list?
Who’s LIST SHOULD YOU BE ON RIGHT NOW?
Who needs YOU ON THEIR LIST?
Who will remember you on their list WHEN YOU’RE NOT around, in the business, anymore?

Besides my tightened focus on PGA Junior League Golf for 2016, I am also going to be looking for opportunities to tell stories of #ThxPGAPro. If you’ve got one to share with our Section, I am asking you to share it with me. For now, I would like to thank all of you who have joined our “coalition of the willing” for the opportunity to work with you, your facilities and to share in your success.

Monte Koch, Certified PGA Professional/Player Development
Player Development Regional Mgr/Mentor**
PGA of America (Greater Seattle/PacNW PGA Section)
Email: Mkoch@pgahq.com  Cell: 206/335-5260