After the wettest February on record, I hope you are ready for a little sunshine.  The skiing has been great but now it’s time for golfers to start getting the urge to chase that little ball around again.  I trust you spent these slow days planning your Player Development calendar (read….planning how to make more $ this year).  If not, it’s not too late to develop a robust Get Golf Ready program, form a PGA Junior League team or formulate a plan to host a Drive Chip and Putt Prep Clinic.  Player Development is about developing players for YOUR facility. Make your business successful and the game will be just fine.

March will be a busy month in the Section. We have tournaments, governance and player development all going full speed.  In addition to the Chapter schedules getting started, two events are on the Section calendar. The Holcomb-In-One Las Vegas Pro-am is nearly full at 26 teams. Thanks to Grant Holcomb and support from his companies – Antigua, Imperial, Sun Mountain, PlayKleen and Ceritfresh Cigars – this proves to be one of our best trips to Vegas yet. Unfortunately, you’ll not hear many of the details, but we will have fun!  The following week, March 20-21, Kenney Boyd will welcome us to Glendale Country Club for the PNW Pro-Assistant Championship.  It’s hard to believe it’s been 25 years since RC started this event at Tacoma C&GC where Jerry Minor and Ralph West finally won a SEVEN hole play-off.  We have a tremendous group of sponsors – Sally Schmitz with Bushnell-Bolle; Bryan Dickson with Cutter & Buck; Troy Flateau with Golf Genius; David Nelson with Hole-In-One USA and Matt Pollitt with PTE Golf.  Glendale will put on a great show and with all the support, you know it will be a great event. Click here to enter the Pro-Assistant.

Associated with the Pro-Assistant Championship is the Pacific Northwest Section Spring Meeting at Glendale CC on March 20 at 7:00 PM. We are very pleased to welcome PGA of America President Paul Levy who will be part of a Town Hall format to share with you how the PGA is serving you and answer your questions.  Please join us even if you are not playing in the Pro-Assistant.  Head professionals, bring your apprentices and young assistants to this meeting to interact with Paul and inspire them to get the most out of their membership.

Player Development is not just an important part of the Section’s Strategic Plan, it’s core to your success in the business.  To support your efforts, in partnership with Yamaha, we are again offering our Yamaha Player Development Grants. With $14,000 to spread around, we encourage everyone to apply. Be creative or simply ask for support of a rock solid program you already offer. This program is designed to help you grow the game.  Click here for the grant application. While you write your grant application, why not promote Drive Chip and Putt at your facility?  This free program is for every child of every ability.  It is not always the “professional” junior who advances! I’m happy to report that 5 of the 8 golfers that will represent our region at Augusta next month went through one of our Local Qualifiers!  Your juniors can live the dream.  If you want to help them, host a Drive Chip and Putt Prep Clinic to prepare them for the competition. If you do, please send us the details and we’ll post on our website. Finally, PGA Junior League is simply the best program rolled out of Palm Beach Gardens in my 32 years in the business.  If you are not hosting a team you are missing a tremendous opportunity. Click here for our DCP schedule. Click here for PGA Junior League information.

We are very lucky to have a great list of sponsors but I want to highlight Wildhorse Resort and Casino and all the great support they offer at both the Section and Chapter level. We are now in the 15th year of support for the Wildhorse Resort Senior Oregon Open Invitational.  Thank you, Gary George and Mike Hegarty for making this such a popular championship. We enjoy all that Wildhorse has to offer!

One final reminder – please complete the PGA Compensation Survey. It only takes a few minutes and provides essential information for Carol Pence to help elevate the compensation of all of us. Your information is totally secure and will never be presented in a fashion it can be individually identifiable. Log into your account to complete.

Have a great March and I hope to see you at Glendale for the Spring Meeting.


Jeff Ellison, PGA