Ready for Spring Golf!
Foreword Press
greg morris

President's Report

I have just returned from the PGA Merchandise Show in Orlando.  It was hard leaving the warm weather and returning to the 15 degrees and snow in Montana.

The PGA Show was full of new teaching aids, great apparel and equipment for 2019.  I always enjoy walking the show floor and running into PNW Professionals. Getting the chance to walk the floor with Darren Black and Brad Faller was a highlight for sure. When purchasing items for your clubs this season, please consider looking at our Section Sponsors. This will go a long way in retaining sponsorships in the future.

As we inch our way to spring, there are a couple of key things going on to be aware of. First, if you haven’t registered for PGA Junior League, now is the time. Captain Registration is going on right now.  Please reach out to Branden Thompson (PGA Regional League Manger) with any questions.  Player registration will start this month so you need to get your program listed.

Secondly, Sweet 16 takes place February 17th at The Coeur d’ Alene Resort. Thanks to the sponsors of this event, Pacific Golf & Turf & EZ-Go, we have some great educational seminars planned.  Ted D. Eleftheriou’s topic will be Learning the Business of Coaching, Jeff Ellison will be educating all of us on the new rules for 2019 and Monte Koch’s topic will be the Five Tools for Leadership. 

Looking forward to March already, Pro-Assistant entries are available now. Playing in this fun event with your staff is a great way to start the tournament season.  I expect this year’s tournament to sell out quickly, as we get the chance to play one of the great golf clubs in the Northwest.  A big thank you goes out to Doug Doxsie for hosting us at Seattle Golf Club.

Also happening in March is the PNW PGA Special Awards Ceremony. On Sunday, March 17th at Seattle Golf Club we will be honoring our 2018 Special Award Winners. Monday, March 18th at 7:00 pm will be our Section Spring Meeting. This will also be held at Seattle Golf Club.

I look forward to seeing everyone soon in March, winters in Montana can get pretty long, it’s time to play some golf again. As always, feel free to call or email me with any questions or concerns.

All the best,

Gregory C. Morris, PGA
President, PNWPGA
Head Golf Professional, Iron Horse GC

molly cooper

Tips on Learning the New Rules of Golf

#2 Learn How to Properly Drop the Ball

Molly Cooper, PGA
Director of Tournament & Member Programs

Welcome back to our monthly Rules article to help guide you to a successful 2019 season and beyond!  I hope these monthly articles help you.  They are helping me get more familiar with some of the Rules of Golf changes writing them for you. 

On January 1, 2019 the USGA unveiled the new Rules of Golf.  As we all know by now, many changes were made to the existing Rules of Golf. One of the biggest changes and yet one of the easiest to implement once learned is how to properly drop the ball. This one that has caused confusion even at the highest levels – the PGA Tour!

In the Sony Open earlier this year, PGA Superstar Jordan Spieth almost earned a penalty stroke on his first drop of the year. Spieth knew the rule had changed but thought it was optional to drop it from his knee and that he could continue dropping the old way from shoulder height. Luckily a PGA Rules Official came to his rescue and helped him before he dropped incorrectly when he saw Jordan extend his hand to drop from his shoulder. Read the full story here.

Prior to January 1, 2019 – a proper drop was from shoulder height.  Now under Rule 14-3b you need to follow three steps to properly drop the ball in the right way. 

Rule 14-3b – Ball Must Be Dropped in Right Way.  The player must drop a ball in the right way which means all three of these things:

  • Player Must Drop Ball.  The ball must be dropped only by the player.  Neither the player’s caddie nor anyone else may do so.
  • Ball Must Be Dropped Straight Down from Knee Height Without Touching Player or Equipment.  The player must let go of the ball from a location at knee height so that the ball:
  • Falls straight down, without the player throwing, spinning or rolling it or using any other motion that might affect where the ball will come to rest, and
  • Does not touch any part of the player’s body and equipment before it hits the ground.

“Knee height” means the height of the player’s knee when in a standing position.

  • Ball Must Be Dropped in Relief Area.  The ball must be dropped in the relief area.  The player may stand either inside or outside the relief area when dropping the ball.

If a ball is dropped in a wrong way in breach of one or more of these three requirements:

  • The player must drop a ball again in the right way, and there is no limit to the number of times the player must do so.
  • A ball dropped in the wrong way does not count as one of the two drops required before a ball must be placed under Rule 14-3c(2).

If the player does not drop again and instead makes a stroke at the ball from where it came to rest after being dropped in a wrong way:

  • If the ball was played from the relief area, the player gets one penalty stroke (but has not played from a wrong place under Rule 14-7a).
  • But if the ball was played from outside the relief area, or after it was placed when required to be dropped (no matter where it was played from), the player gets the general penalty.

To learn more about the new Rules of Golf, visit

hawaii team champs

Bret Lovely, James Postma, Jim Oscarson, Greg Zevely, Ruben Canas

 44th PNW Hawai’i Pro-Am Presented by State Farm Jim Ostrander Agency

PGA Professionals from the Northwest spent 8 days in the tropical paradise of Kauai, playing golf and enjoying all the island has to offer.  Perfect weather, light winds, great food and generous bartenders were the norm. Host for the week was the Kauai Marriott and golf was enjoyed at the Ocean Course at Hokuala and Poipu Bay GC.

Congratulations to PGA Professional Jim Oscarson and his team of Greg Zevely, Ruben Canas, James Postma and Bret Lovely for their best two of three round total of 269 and championship title in the 44th edition of the Pacific Northwest Hawaii Pro-Am presented by State Farm Jim Ostrander Agency.  Jason Aichele, PGA of Meadow Springs CC posted 42-43 = 85 points to win individual professional honors.

Read More
Final Results

PNW Pro-Assistant Championship

Shoreline, WA –Seattle GC
6,416 Yards, Par 72
Max. Field – 60 teams of two Professionals from the same facility*


The Field & Sponsors

The Pacific Northwest Section PGA is proud to have Sally Schmitz of Bushnell, Bryan Dickson of Cutter & Buck and Sterling Cut Glass, and Riley Goodman and Kelly Coleman of Strideline return as Presenting Sponsors of the PNW Pro-Assistant Championship. Thanks also to Matt Pollitt of PTE Golf for returning as our Supporting Sponsor along with David Nelson of Hole-in-One U.S.A and Gordon Schenk of ProTag.

Expected to return to try and defend their title are our 2018 Champions, Head PGA Professional Darren Black and Assistant PGA Professional Brad Faller from Rainier G&CC along with our 2009 Champions, Head PGA Professional Marti O’Neil and Assistant PGA Professional Josh Immordino from Riverbend Golf Complex.

*Multiple teams are allowed based on space availability.

Schedule of Play

The Pro-Assistant Championship begins on Monday, March 18, with a 1:00 PM shotgun start. The final round concludes on Tuesday, March 19, with a shotgun start at 8:00 AM. The Pro-Assistants Championship is a two-man team competition with one head golf professional and their assistant golf professional playing a four-ball competition. The Spring Meeting will be held at 7:00 PM on Monday, after the first round and a hosted dinner. You are also invited to join us for the Special Awards Ceremony, held on Sunday at 5:30 PM.

Seattle GC

Over the years, this challenging and beautiful course has been kept updated while maintaining the classic design of its founders. Originally designed by the club’s first pro, Robert Johnstone from Scotland, it was updated in 1968 by course architect Ted Robinson and remodeled again in 1996 under the direction of Arnold Palmer. Seattle GC is truly one of the most outstanding golf courses in the Northwest.

special awards

PNW PGA Special Awards Ceremony

Please join us in celebrating the 2018 PNW PGA Special Award Winners, March 17 at Seattle GC. The reception begins at 5:30 and the ceremony begins at 7:00.

RSVP Online

Earn 2 MSR's - Take the 2019 PGA Compensation Survey

The PGA of America requests your participation in helping to ensure that one of our Association's most powerful employment tools remains effective for you and other PGA Professionals.

By completing the 2019 PGA Golf Professional Compensation Survey by March 31, 2019, you can receive up to two (2) Member Service Requirement (MSR) credits. MSR credit is automatically applied upon completion of the survey with a summary of your responses available for your records.

All survey responses continue to be treated confidentially with results being reported only if there are five or more responses. To ensure your confidentiality, results continue to be shared in an aggregated format and not by individual.

Take the Survey

Your participation is key to ensuring that your Section's compensation information is valid and meaningful. Your support of this important PGA initiative is greatly appreciated.  

bill morach

Holk's Highlights: Bill Morach, PGA

This month we interview Bill Morach, winner of the 2018 PNWPGA Horton Smith award! This award goes to a PGA model educator. Bill is the model for “lifelong learning”. He has all six PGA Certifications, and he requires his staff to gain PGA certification as well. In 2018 the Section and Oregon Chapter education committees, both led by Bill, provided education opportunities to over 250 members and associates.

Facility: Eugene CC

Hometown: Originally from Oak Harbor, WA.  

PGA Member Since: 2004

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

I was going to graduate school studying biomechanics, kinesiology and exercise physiology.  At the same time, I was teaching basic physical education classes at Central Washington University.  My addiction to golf was off the charts.  My studies, addiction and teaching skills collided and started me on a path toward becoming a golf professional. 

What do you feel is the most valuable to PGA Professionals in achieving PGA Certification or continuing education in general? 

When you love something, you want to learn more about it.  There is so much to learn about this game and this industry, that it requires you to constantly and consistently stayed engaged.  I encourage my Assistant Golf Professionals to add one certificate or “resume builder” each off-season.  There are so many ways to improve yourself – the Certified Professional Program, Trackman certificates, SAM Putt Lab, the new Rules of Golf and TPI training just to name a few.  In a matter of just a few years, they will have separated themselves from the pack and made themselves more marketable to future employers.  A PGA Professional in today’s world needs to always challenge herself/himself to be better.

Thank you, Bill Morach!


Pros on the Move

by Michelle Parish, Tournament & Membership Coordinator

Employment Changes

  • Bo F Baker (B-8) - from Esmeralda GC to The Creek at Qualchan
  • Eric D. Briggs, PGA (A-1) - from GOLFTEC - Southcenter to Lakeland Village GC
  • Carl J. Hetterle, PGA (A-1) - from Broadmoor GC to Semiahmoo G&CC
  • Jason S. Letus (B-11) - from Coeur D'Alene Resort GC to Pacific Northwest Section
  • Patrick C. Oropallo, PGA (A-13) - from Eagle Point GC to Oak Knoll GC

Class Changes

  • Mark Meyer, PGA (Pronghorn) - from A-8 to A-1
  • Edgar A. Quick, PGA (Wenatchee G&CC) - from A-8 to A-1

New Associates

  • Tyler D. Barrong (B-8) - Downriver GC
  • Brandon I. Hepner (B-8) - Shadow Hills CC

Newly Elected Members

  • Gabriel C. Larkey, PGA (A-8) - Pumpkin Ridge - Witch Hollow
  • Nathan J. Miller, PGA (A-8) Green Meadow CC

Transfers INTO the Section

  • Howard J. Acla, PGA (A-13) to Sudden Valley GC from Philadelphia Section
  • Danielle N. Burns, PGA (A-8) to Broadmoor GC from Middle Atlantic Section
  • Ronald J. Cox, PGA (A-13) to Unaffliated from Southern California Section
  • Craig A. Crandall, PGA (A-14) to GOLFTEC - Cascade Station from Unaffliated Section

Transfers OUT of the Section

  • Brian P Baltzer - from Skagit G&CC to Colorado Section
  • Jason D. Deerwester, PGA - from Gregg Rogers' Golf Perf Center to Metropolitan Section
  • Brandon L. Flynn, PGA - from GOLFTEC - Southcenter to South Central Section
  • Sean P. Lanyi, PGA - from Unaffliated to Southern California Section
  • Mark A. Savoy, PGA - from Old Works GC to Rocky Mountain Section
  • Benjamin A Talbot - from Tumwater Valley GC to Southern Texas Section

529: Money for College

Blake Parrish, CFP®

“Hit the shot you know you can hit, not the one you think you should” – Dr. Bob Rotella

After years of saving for college, you don’t want a misstep when it’s time to use your 529 assets. Here are some do’s and don’ts for the college-bound.

If you’ve spent years saving for college in a 529, you deserve a congratulations for a job well done. You also want to make sure you don’t trip up in the home stretch… when it’s time to draw on those funds to pay the tab.

With that in mind, here are six helpful tips for tapping your 529 account.

1. Decide who gets the money

Most 529 plans allow you to direct distributions to yourself, to the account beneficiary or to the college. Some plans allow 529 monies to be directed to other parties as well, perhaps the school bookstore or an off-campus apartment building.

Sending the distribution directly to the school can be advantageous in that it serves as documentation for a qualified withdrawal. You should confirm how your school treats 529 money, however. If the college views it the same as outside scholarships, it may reduce your child’s financial aid by that amount.

If you choose to have the money sent to you or your child, then you are responsible for paying the school (and for the all-important record-keeping). Also consider that having the money sent to the student means the 529 earnings are reportable on his or her tax return vs. your own. Speak with your tax advisor about the potential implications of this.


Read More


"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."

Gold Level Sponsors
FP-gold-sponsor-NCR FP-gold-sponsor-wildhorse FP-gold-sponsor-rosauers
Holcomb-In-One Sponsors
antigua logo sponsor-sun-mountain
Silver Level Sponsors
FP-silver-sponsor-PACGolf FP-silver-sponsor-CB FP-silver-sponsor-bushnell FP-silver-sponsor-clubcar
FP-silver-sponsor-SCG FP-silver-sponsor-yamaha FP-partner-sponsor-ama FP-silver-sponsor-sundog FP-silver-sponsor-gregnorman
National Sponsors
FP-natl-sponsor-janiking FP-natl-sponsor-omega
FP-natl-sponsor-KitchenAid FP-natl-sponsor-PGANatlResort FP-natl-sponsor-PGATour FP-natl-sponsor-pepsi
Partner-Level Sponsors
FP-partner-sponsor-PTE FP-partner-sponsor-statefarm FP-partner-sponsor-pelzer
FP-partner-sponsor-haas-jordan swing caddie FP-partner-sponsor-sunice
under armour logo

Copyright © 2018 Pacific Northwest PGA
Our address is PO Box 14819, Tumwater, WA 98511