May FP
greg manley

President's Report

I am sure that your off-season was full of planning and preparation. Hopefully, like our Section Board, you have a solid plan in place and now it’s time to execute. Your Section staff, an amazing team, is in full-on mode for events, operations and membership support. Please thank them the next time you encounter them. They definitely live by our mission statement of “serve the members and grow the game”.

We will all be very busy for the next 4-5 months but please don’t hesitate to consider participating in a Section event. Know that you can lean on the Section staff for help with membership concerns, including the quickly approaching MSR deadline.

Enjoy your summer and grow the game. You can make an impact on someone’s life through this great game and make your facility profitable! You are the expert in our game. Wear the PGA logo proudly and thank you for being an amazing part of our Section!

Greg Manley, PGA
President, PNWPGA
Meridian Valley CC
cell: 253-350-3209

jeff ellison

CEO's Report

We’ve been a wee bit busy in the Section office thanks to processing payouts, deposits, handicaps and MSR’s for 33 Chapter events in April. That’s right 33!  Your accounting staff does a great job turning payouts quickly and tracking all the details necessary to develop accurate financial statements. If you want to help them out, or just get your money much faster, just sign up for EFT (Electronic Funds Transfer) and your payout will go straight into your account the day after we send it to the bank. You even receive an email with the check stub so it’s easy to track all your winnings! Get the form here.

Major tournament season is in full swing with the Muckleshoot Casino Washington Open Invitational right around the corner. Chris Manley has done a terrific job with sponsorships, the City of Kent is on board and of course we are going to support the Folds of Honor through the pro-am auction. The course is in great shape, the weather has finally turned, and all we need is you for a great championship! Entries close May 2, enter today.

Entries for the three member championships administered by National come out each May. The Assistant PGA Professional Championship entries are available now and you can expect to see entries for the PGA Professional Championship and qualifying for the Senior PGA Professional Championship to be out shortly. These are your championships… mark your schedule today and don’t forget to enter!

PGA Dues bills will be headed your way shortly from National. All bills are sent via email ‒ a hard copy isn’t coming. Now would also be a good time to confirm your correct email is on your account.  Paying via the link in this email or printing an invoice and mailing to National are the only way to pay your National and Section dues… we can’t take them at the Section or Chapter offices. This year you will see a $5 charge on our dues invoice for the Member Assistance Program. Look for more information from National on the benefits coming with the program on July 1.

Our thanks to Darrell Livingston and Patrick Coughlin of GT Golf Supplies for renewing their support of the Northwest Open and also for adding support to the PNW Senior PGA Championship. Thanks, gentlemen.

I encourage you to download the Pacific Northwest Section App and take advantage of all the essential features. This is now your complete member and vendor database as well as a handy calendar. You’ll also find convenient links to important information. Get it today at the Members Web Portal.

The June 15 deadline for Members to meet the MSR requirement is quickly approaching. Please access your account and confirm your status. There is still time to make up any deficiencies via the PGA Certified Professional library. Contact your tremendous membership staff here in the office if you need help.

I look forward to seeing you at the Muckleshoot Casino Washington Open Invitational!


Jeff  Ellison, PGA
CEO, Pacific NW Section PGA

Candidates for Secretary: Marcus King & Howie Pruitt

Marcus King on Serving our Members and Growing the Game

kingThe question for Howie and me this month is: “Our Mission Statement is very clear.  How will you work with the Board to develop successful programs to achieve that mission?”

Our Mission:  To Serve our Members and Grow the Game

The beauty of our Section and National mission statement is that you can actually remember it, which is rare for a mission statement.  Usually mission statements are long, filled with pompous corporate blather, ignored, immemorable, and have no relevance or meaning for the people of the organization from which it was born.  Try mentioning the phrase “mission statement” in your social group and watch eyes roll back in their sockets and the oxygen get sucked out of the room.  It’s the #1 social repellent.

However, our 3-year old Section mission statement is simple, elegant, relevant and memorable.  Whether PGA National, the Pacific Northwest Section PGA, or your local PGA chapter, the mission is still the same:  To Serve our Members and Grow the Game.  That’s why the PGA exists and is the primary focus of everything we do in the PGA.

Commitments Supporting our Mission

In support of our mission is our Strategic Vision, made up of three commitments:

  • We must be in constant pursuit of excellence and commitment to innovation, collaboration and improvement.
  • Teamwork and talent must define our culture and must be exhibited in our communications, accountability, honesty, trust and impact.
  • We are committed to diversity and inclusion as it is essential to any activity or program that the Section conducts and/or any practice we implement.

Also in support of our mission, all our programs must meet at least one of the below 6 strategic criteria to be adopted in our Section core activities of tournaments, player development, employment, professional development, community outreach/charity, and governance:

  • Protect and enhance the PGA brand.
  • Help our members, directly or indirectly.
  • Develop new golfers, promote the game of golf and/or make it more fun and enjoyable.
  • Position the Pacific Northwest Section and our members as leaders in the business, teaching and playing of the game.
  • Develop local and regional importance and influence.
  • Strengthen the perception of the Pacific Northwest Section and our members as the tangible connection between the game and all that play it in the Pacific Northwest.

Where the Wedge Meets the Turf: Developing Successful Programs

“Successful” is the key word.  PGA National—and by extension our own Section—has had some programs that just didn’t get any traction.  When I served as your Section President previously, there were 66 programs offered to our members and very few of them were successful.  When you think of “successful” now, think Junior League Golf, Drive, Chip & Putt, PGA LEAD, PGA Reach, and our own in-house tournament program.  For programs to be successful, they must be practical, affordable, profitable, attractive, creative, timely and appealing to the PGA Professional with their boots on the ground getting stretched every day at their respective facilities.  Ultimately, our value to our owners is in creating happy, returning golfers and revenue, and my value to you and the Board is to spend the next eight years helping you do this through successful programming.

How will I work with the Board to develop successful programs to achieve our mission?  I’ll keep it simple with 8 points to consider.

I will work with the Board to:

  • First identify why programs fail: lack of resources, no buy-in, lack of relevance to our PGA brothers and sisters, not broad enough, too expensive, etc.
  • Assess the Board’s skills and soft spots so that we can properly apply effort and resources to strengthen existing programs and create new ones that are responsive to our changing environment and are practical and relevant to our fellow golf professionals.
  • Add “relevance” to our program criteria. It is my personal mission to assure that PGA Professionals remain relevant as the definitive link between our game, our golfers and our business.  Without relevance there is no success.
  • Implement updated business and demographic data to create the foundation for our future programs.
  • Strengthen our mentoring efforts both at your facility level and at the Board level.
  • Support the Committees that spawn new ideas and work hard to put them in place.
  • Participate in and promote our programs, not just talk about them.
  • Offer leadership initiatives for PGA Professionals so that anyone who wants to become a better leader—either at their facility or in PGA governance—has the opportunity and skills to do so. Leaders create success and successful programs.

Tap-In for Bird on the 18th Green

In conclusion, we all must remember that successful programs are a means to an end.  In the end, our owners just want two things:  1) happy golfers who invite their families and friends to join them in playing the game they love, and 2) financial prosperity.  Successful programs create happy golfers and financial prosperity, and in working with our Section Board—made up of your Chapter Presidents and Vice Presidents—I will keep this in front of us as we serve you, the members, and help you grow the game.

I’m always open to your feedback, whether positive or negative.  Feel free to email me at, call me at Overlake on my direct line at (425) 633-1833, or text or call me on my cell at (425) 246-0448 at any time. I would love to hear your thoughts on successful programs and on how the Board can better serve and support you, our brother and sister PGA Golf Professionals.


See you at the Washington State Open Invitational!

Marcus King, PGA, CCM, CCE
General Manager
Overlake Golf & Country Club

Howie Pruitt on Serving our Members and Growing the Game

How Will I Work with the Board to Develop Successful Programs to Achieve our Mission?

Before addressing the question for this month, I’d like to go back to last month. I was remiss in not acknowledging Marcus. I am delighted to be in the race with Marcus. He is a solid guy and has served this Section as a true leader. When I was considering running for this position, the first person I reached out to for advice and guidance was Marcus. I am looking forward to the next few months on the trail with him.

I believe as Section Officers, working with our Section Board, all that our work must revolve around our Mission and our Strategic Vision and Plan. We have a very robust and effective committee structure in our Section. I don’t believe that as Section Officers, we should be developing “programs”. I think it is important for our committees to initiate, develop and present new proposals to the Board of Directors.  Section officers should have two critical roles when supporting programs: they must be “champions” and “truth Sayers”.

Let’s address the “Champion” role. The committees are the life blood of our programs and the development of new ones. As the programs are developed and refined, they need support to grow and become aligned with our mission. The committee chairmen cannot do this alone. Once the programs get to the Board, Officers need to step forward and “champion” the efforts for implementation. What does this “championing” look like? Being a Champion follows a few principles of “Managing Change.”

  • Be clear and aligned about the business case for each initiative-what are the committees proposing and why. We need to hold that up to our mission: do they support members and grow the game?
  • Engage stakeholders – get input…lots of it and understand the impacts.
  • Communicate, Communicate, and Communicate some more. Our members will all be trying to tune that mythical radio station WIIFM. “What’s In It For M
  • Lastly, ensure there are measures; how will we know, quantitively/qualitatively, that the program is achieving the goals.

As Champions, we must also be “Truth Sayers”.  There are dangers ahead for us if we do not fight against two issues: Complacency and Compliance. Complacency will creep into our thinking if we do not constantly ask the hard questions. But asking those hard questions is not enough if there is not context. That context must come from our strategic vision. We have three tenants listed directly under our strategic vision: first, we must be in constant pursuit of excellence and commitment to innovation, collaboration and improvement.  We must not take these words for granted. As a leadership team, we must be aligned on their meaning. The second tenant, teamwork and talent, are critical to our culture and must be exhibited in our communication, accountability, honesty, trust, and impact. It’s most likely that the people who originally created the strategic plan all understood and agreed to the meanings of these words. But culture, for example, particularly in an organizational setting, can have so many different meanings. The third tenant, commitment to diversity and inclusion is an essential consideration for all activities and programs that the section adopts and or practices that we implement. It’s important what we mean by this. John Skipper, former President of ESPN network said, “Diversity is getting everyone on the same team. Inclusion, is getting everyone into the game.” Section leadership must all understand the words being used.

The danger of Compliance manifests itself in what I refer to as ”compliant behavior”. It’s behavior that we observe often in meetings, where everyone participates, and ultimately agrees to the decision. Then the group goes on break, and you often hear conversations like this, “Can you believe that we agreed like this; it has no chance of ever working.” This is another opportunity for the “truth-sayer.” Compliant behavior can only be countered by constantly testing for commitment. Champions and truth-Sayers don’t have to be the same person, but they are critical roles on the leadership team.

So how do we get to commitment? In group settings, such as Board meetings, ground rules need to be established, agreed to and enforced. A process for how the group will make decisions is critical. We have to decide how we will we vote; majority vote or consensus? Without these processes in place, decisions are too often made where people are not in agreement or alignment. I think each of us has examples when we have been in meetings when we have seen this behavior. Programs cannot be successfully implemented if there is not full support of the Board and membership.

As a Board Officer, to support new programs that support the mission, I will always be looking for opportunities to be a Champion for Change and a Truth-Sayer. I am convinced that having over 20 successful years of experience in Change Management and Group dynamics as an executive and a member of other Boards, I can apply these skills as your Section Secretary to support the Section’s success moving forward.

Howie Pruitt, PGA
Director, Player Development/Head Golf Professional
Aspen Lakes Golf Club
Sisters, OR 97759
Director, Oregon Chapter, PGA of America
2017 Oregon Chapter, PGA of America, Patriot Award Winner

Sr Players Champ

Coston Wins PNW Senior Players’ Championship

Molly Cooper, PGA
Director of Tournament & Member Programs

PGA Professional Jeff Coston (Semiahmoo G&CC) won the PNW Senior Players’ Championship by one stroke over PGA Professional Mike Gove (Inglewood GC). The first senior section major of the year, held at Wine Valley GC, is a two-man team competition of one Pacific Northwest PGA Professional and one amateur playing a both an individual and a four-ball competition.

Winning the team Four-Ball competition was the team led by PGA Professional Steve Stull (Richland, WA) and amateur Brad Karns (Royal Oaks CC). Their Four-Ball scores of 70-65-135, 9-under par, earned them victory by three strokes. Their fantastic score included a hole-in-one, shot by Stull during round one on the 11th hole. Three teams finished in a tie for second place. They were: the team led by PGA Professional Joe Carranza (Aldarra GC) and amateur Tom Hale (Tacoma C&GC), the team of PGA Professional Brent Murray (Oswego Lake CC) and amateur Spencer Klapp (Tualatin CC), and the team of PGA Professional Jim Pike (Sahalee CC) and amateur George White (Royal Oaks CC).

The weather conditions during round one of the tournament were very difficult, with wind gusts around 40 mph. Coston battled them with his “experience, commitment and templates,” stating that, “controlling the flight of the ball is huge.”

“As we’ve seen in the Northwest Open, bombers do well there. I’d better stay in the weight room and add some heavier lifts!” he added.

In the off-season just prior to the 2017 season, Coston injured himself playing basketball with one of his sons and had a long rehabilitation from his surgery. When asked about the long journey to recovery and how that impacted his game, he commented, “after my injury I have definitely had to re-invent myself.  As difficult as coming back has been, it has made me thankful for every tournament opportunity. The injury and age has made me hungrier in a different way also. I have more to achieve.”

There is one more major victory to be achieved at Wine Valley GC this year. This challenging and beautiful golf course will once again be the site of Northwest Open Invitational this August 20-22. Entry forms will be available from the PNW Section in June.

The Senior Players’ Championship welcomed back PGA Professional Ken Allen and Club Glove as a sponsor. Thanks for sponsoring the event for another year!

Thanks to PGA Professional Chris Isaacson and owner Jim Pliska for hosting us for another great event! Wine Valley Golf Club has been rated "One of The Top Three Golf Courses to Play in Washington" by Golfweek. It has been awarded many other honors since opening in 2009. This stunning Dan Hixson design unfolds on a grand scale, playing over rolling hills in the shadow of the Blue Mountains.

Both Senior Player of the Year Points and Senior Hudson Cup Points were earned for top finishers.

Final Results

Senior Hudson Cup Points

1.Coston, Jeff - 175

2. Gove, Mike - 120

3. DeShaw, Kelly -110
    Keating, Mark - 110
    Pike, Jim - 110

OMEGA Senior Player of the Year Points

1.Coston, Jeff - 150

2. Gove, Mike - 95

3. DeShaw, Kelly - 85
    Keating, Mark - 85
    Pike, Jim - 85

OR Open

Bring Your Team to the Oregon Open Invitational

June 26 - 28, 2018
Aspen Lakes GC - Sisters, OR
7,087 Yards, Par 72

Team entries are now available for the Oregon Open Invitational. Entries close on June 6, so hurry and get your team entry in before this popular event fills!

Enjoy the relaxed atmopshere of the two team competitions – best 2 net of the 4, and each professional will play a net four-ball with one amateur. Also, go for the title of Oregon Open champion in the individual competition! The championship is a 54-hole stroke play competition with professional and amateur purses.

You don’t have to take a team with the best handicaps – just take your best golf buddies! There is no maximum handicap for entry (18 max. in the competition), however, all players will play from the championship tees and there will be no individual net amateur.

Team Online Entry
Team PDF Entry
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Join Us in Kaua'i This Winter

January 10-17, 2019
Hokuala Ocean Course & Poipu Bay GC

Join us for the 44th PNW Hawaii Pro-Am presented by State Farm Jim Ostrander Agency. Kaua'i Marriott Resort will be our home for this fantastic trip and we will play two incredible golf courses: Hokuala Ocean Course designed by Jack Nicklaus and Poipu Bay Golf Course designed by Robert Trent Jones, Jr.

Kaua'i Marriott Resort offers an impressive pool, sandy beach and beautiful grounds. It is conveniently located within easy walking distance of local restaurants and late night spots.

Hokuala is just blocks away from the hotel and an easy walk or hotel shuttle ride. The Ocean Course features and impressive stretch of holes right on the water’s edge. You will enjoy this beautiful and challenging Jack Nicklaus Signature design. It was completely renovated and is in fantastic condition.

Poipu Bay hosted the PGA Grand Slam of golf for 13 years and saw the likes of Tiger Woods, Phil Mickelson and Greg Norman claim the title. Robert Trent Jones, Jr. provides you with a very scenic and playable seaside course for round two of our event.  

Register your team before this popular event fills!

Contact Denise Bacon or Jeff Ellison with questions: 360-456-6496. 

Online Entry Form
Entry Form (PDF)


Flyer & Schedule

National Car Rental Assistant PGA Professional Championship

August 6, 2018
DuPont, WA - The Home Course
6,737 Yards, Par 72

Entries are now available for the National Car Rental Assistant PGA Professional Championship on August 6. We will play 36 holes at The Home Course in DuPont, WA. Assistants, plan on entering. Bosses, give your assistant time off to play in their championship! You may register for this event through PGA of America Membership services at 800-474-2776 or online at

The entry deadline is Wednesday, July 25 at 11:59 PM. Please pay close attention to the entry deadline as there is no longer a late entry option to this championship. The PGA of America recently changed the entry process to a 5-year calculation which determined spots we are playing for and purse calculations.

The top 3 finishers will advance directly to the 42nd PGA Assistant Championship, held November 15-18, 2018 at PGA Golf Club – Wanamaker Course in Port St. Lucie, FL. (Derek Berg is exempt and will not count as one of the three spots based on his finish at the National event last summer.)



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Holk's Highlights: Mark Nelson

Hometown: Hayden Lake, Idaho

PGA Professional Since: 2010

Tell us a little bit about your career. Who or what inspired you to be a PGA Professional?

I have always dreamed of having a career in sports. My wife Jessica helped me realize this dream when we first met and inspired me to follow my passion. Along the way I have worked for some amazing mentors that continue to motivate me and inspire me like PGA Professional Tom Davidson.

Favorite golfer?

My daughter, Kianna Nelson. And Bubba Watson.


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Pros on the Move

by Michelle Parish, Tournament & Membership Coordinator

Employment Changes

  • Christian M Andrade (B-8) - from Prairie Falls GC to The GC At Black Rock
  • Jared A Lambert (B-8) - from Unaffliated to Meadow Lakes GC
  • Kyle A Poore (B-8) - from Missoula CC to Northern Pines GC
  • Douglas D. Sheppard, PGA (A-1) - from Unaffliated to Prairie Farms GC
  • Michael P. Snyder, PGA (A-8) - from Chehalem Glenn GC to OGA GC
  • Anthony D. Wik (B-4) - from Unaffliated to Claremont GC

Class Changes

  • Tim E. Fraley, PGA (Awbrey Glen GC) - from A-4 to A-14

New Associates

  • Christopher D. Curtis (B-8) - Esmeralda GC
  • Justin D. Huckins (B-8) - Sunriver Resort-Meadows Course
  • Jason T. Poll (B-8) - Bandon Dunes Golf Resort
  • Bryson G. Smith (B-8) - Missoula CC
  • Connor D. Smith (B-8) - Bandon Dunes Golf Resort

Newly Elected Members

  • Casey T. Keyser, PGA (A-1) - Buffalo Hill GC
  • Zachary T. Lampert, PGA (A-1) - Meadow Lakes GC
  • Taylor J. Porter, PGA (A-8) - Avondale GC
  • Austin W. Westphal, PGA (A-8) - Avondale GC

Transfers INTO the Section

  • Rex E. Denham, PGA (A-13) to Illinois Valley GC from N. California
  • K L Gildersleeve-Jensen, PGA (A-6) to Kalispel Golf & CC from Southwest
  • Austin T. Hall, PGA (A-8) to The GC At Black Rock from S. California
  • Peter E. Heydecker, PGA (A-14) to Unaffliated from Illinois
  • Guy T. Hupe, PGA (LMC) to Unaffliated from Southwest
  • Michael R. Jones, PGA (A-4) to Suncadia Resort from Tri-State
  • Aaron A. Moe, PGA (A-8) to The GC At Black Rock from S. California
  • Robert G. Randall, PGA (A-6) to RedTail Golf Center from S. Florida

Transfers OUT of the Section

  • Marvin L. Clover, PGA - from King Ranch GC to Rocky Mountain
  • Randi N Fischer - from The Idaho Club to Rocky Mountain
  • Robert J Shoemaker - from Canterwood Golf & CC to Colorado
  • Thomas G. VanHaaren, PGA - from Pronghorn to Michigan
  • Phillip M. Woods, PGA - from Footjoy to S. California
monte koch

Four P's for Career Success in Your Future

Monte Koch, PGA of America Employment Consultant

 How is your career doing? Or do you feel like you’ve just got a job? Either way, there is always more for you in your career or there’s a way to make it more than just a job. Maybe we can get there together?


 This is your reason for being in the career, the role, the “lane” you are in the golf industry. Basically, this is your why. Your customers, members and your employer need to know your why. (You may think, my employer doesn’t care about my why. If that is true for you, I suggest we get together. Maybe your why doesn’t resonate with them enough to make a difference for them, or they really don’t care. Either way, we can do something about it.)

 As an example my why, as a Career Consultant now (and a Player Development Regional Manager from 2012-mid 2017) was and still is: “Be an integral part of reinvigorating the career and employment experience for PGA golf professionals I work with; help them enjoy greater professional fulfillment, job security and income.” That why is what drives me every day, and it’s why I do a fist pump when one of “my professionals” gets a new job they really wanted, or a raise because of engagement value they’ve created in their work, or a new opportunity. Being a part of your success, is the way I deliver value to the PGA professionals and the manner in which I find professional fulfillment.

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Does Anyone Know What a Bond is Anymore?

Blake Parrish, CFP®

It takes hundreds of good golf shots to gain confidence, but only one bad one to lose it” – Jack Nicklaus

An entire generation of investors has been misled about interest rates; where they come from, what they mean, how they’re determined.

We’ve been getting lots of questions about bonds and the unrest with interest rate hikes going up too far too fast.  So, I thought this month would be a good opportunity to help the Pacific NW PGA section get a handle on understanding a portion of the bond markets.  This is not an attempt to recommend bonds or bond funds.  Merely to dispel the hysteria and to avoid tying your money up for years while inflation and opportunity loss eat away at your otherwise potential wealth creation.


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"Certified Financial Planner Boardof Standards Inc. owns the certification marks CFP®, CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER™, CFP® (with plaque design) and CFP® (with flame design) in the U.S., which it awards to individuals who successfully complete CFP Board’s initial and ongoing certification requirements.”

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