First and foremost, we mourn the loss of Sean Fredrickson. Sean served this Section with distinction for many years and he was always focused on “members first”. More importantly, Sean was a great husband, great father, and he was a great servant to his community.  Please continue to hold his family in your thoughts and prayers. Many of you have asked what the Section and the PGA of America are doing to honor Sean. Our former Section President Bryan Tunstill and his team are working with Sean’s wife, April, on a plan. I will share more details as they are available.

During the difficult times, the professionals that serve you, your Board members at the Chapter and Section level, have been tremendously supportive in this time of transition. Please take the time to say thank you to them for their service.

We continue to operate Chapter and Section events where we can be safe. I was delighted to see so many players at the Oregon Open. We had a very successful Oregon Open at Arrowhead. Thank you, Rob Gibbons and the ownership group, for stepping up to host the event. Congratulations to PGA professional Brady Sharp from Wine Valley Golf Club as the winner of the 86th Oregon Open.

COVID-19 continues to wreak havoc in areas within the Pacific Northwest. We had to make the tough decision to cancel the Senior Oregon Open at the Wildhorse Resort. Wildhorse has been a tremendous sponsor for us, and the tournament staff is working diligently with the resort to find a way to reschedule the event to a time when it can be safely conducted.

There are a couple of critical deadlines approaching. The Senior PPC at Royal Oaks closing date: August 19, 2020; PPC at Canyon River, closing date September 9, 2020. If you can play, please sign up.

Please join me in congratulating two of our Section Professionals for winning national awards. Chris Runyan, GOLFTEC, is the National Patriot Award Winner, and Jacob Lippold, Chambers Bay, is the National Merchandiser of the Year for Public Facilities.

Most of you know that Jeff Ellison, after thirty years of service to the Pacific Northwest Section, will be retiring on August 31, 2020. We all knew that we couldn’t replace Jeff, but we also knew we had to select a new CEO. Greg Manley did a terrific job of leading a search committee to find the new CEO. After three months, the committee recommended Frank Talarico Jr. to the Board. The Board approved, and Frank will take over as CEO on September 1, 2020. Frank is a very experienced Senior Executive. Among other roles, he served as CEO of the Goodwill Industries of Orange County. Frank has been active in the Southern California PGA Section. He started the Section Foundation and recently served as the Foundation Chairman. He will be a great listener, a great cheerleader, and, most importantly, a great leader of our Section for years to come.

I will close with a gentle reminder. Our jobs are only one aspect of our lives. Our family, friends, and relationships should be driving us. Slow down! Hold the ones you love a little bit tighter.

Howie Pruitt, PGA
Director, Golf Operations, Aspen Lakes GC
President, Pacific Northwest Section
howie@aspenlakes.com