September 1, 2020

President's Report

Rotary International’s motto is “Service above Self.” While Jeff Ellison may not be a Rotarian, he has put that motto into practice for over thirty years of service to this Section. There is no way I can even come close to describing what Jeff has meant to this Section, but I will say that many of the PGA leadership have recognized Jeff’s talent and dedication. Jeff is often described as being one of the best section leaders in the PGA of America. Jeff will add some departing comments later in the newsletter.

I would be remiss if I didn’t thank Jeff and the Section staff for helping Frank Talarico begin his transition into his role as our new CEO. I encourage all of you to take the time to reach out to Frank at and welcome him into the Section.

We had a lot going on in August as we continue our events. Please make sure you congratulate some of our winners:

  • PGA Professional Chris Griffin, along with the sponsor team from DCS with amateurs Gary Sherrell, Colt Sherrell, Nathan Cogswell, and Sean Langham won the Muckleshoot Casino Pro-Am. Low round for the PGA Professionals went to host professional Greg Manley and David Brown of Arrowhead with a round of 67. This was a great event that also raised over $50,000 for the Folds of Honor.
  • Colin Inglis of Shadow Hills won the 94th Muckleshoot Casino Washington Open by one stroke over Birk Nelson of Orange Whip.
  • Shane Prante of The Home Course won the National Car Rental Assistant PGA Professional Championship at Bear Creek. Second place went to Colin Inglis, fresh off his Washington Open win. Finishing in third was Brady Sharp of Wine Valley GC. Brady also is a recent winner of the Oregon Open. All of these professionals will represent us at the 44th National Car Rental Assistant PGA Championship in Florida in November. Good luck gents, and play well.
  • Amateur Nathan Cogswell of Meridian Valley CC continued his winning ways with a victory in the Northwest Open at Walla Walla. The low Professional, one stroke behind Nathan, was David Phay of Whidbey G&CC

Here are some things to get signed up for:

Elections are coming soon. Look to your Chapters for more information. We will hold our Merchandise Show and our Section Meeting virtually on October 20-21. Look for more details to follow.

Lastly, we lost a 22-year member, Bill Ross, in August; please hold Bill and his family in your thoughts.

Please stay safe and look for our new CEO's Report on September 15.

Howie Pruitt, PGA
Director, Golf Operations, Aspen Lakes GC
President, Pacific Northwest Section
Cell: 541-390-7875

Farewell from Jeff

If you will indulge me one last time, I have a few thank yous to share.

First and foremost, to all of you, the outstanding men and women PGA Professionals that make up the Pacific Northwest Section. You are the true caretakers of this game and your participation, passion and commitment are what make the Section so great. You have my sincere thanks for your friendship and kindness over these 30+ years. It has been my pleasure to serve you.

Second, to the many mentors that have made me better, some who did not even know it! I tried to learn and get better every day. I will single out just two. Don Bails, PGA helped a University of Idaho Grad student (Go Vandals) break into this business 35 years ago. I just talked to Don last week, at 88 he is still going strong and still a good friend. And of course, the one and only Dale Johnson. Dale shared his wisdom and wit with all of us. His teachings are woven into the fabric of everything we do, this Section would not be where we are without the foundation Dale laid for all of us.

This Section enjoys outstanding leadership and it has been my honor to serve alongside 16 Presidents and as many different boards. My roles have afforded me the opportunity to know 31 of our 45 Presidents. They, with their respective boards, always kept your best interests at heart. I am confident you can expect that tradition to continue. Thank you all for your support along this journey.

No one does anything alone and I have been so lucky to work with so many great people on the Section and Chapter staff. We have enjoyed a long history of dedicated teams working hard every day to serve OUR members. My thanks to them all. Our current crew is very special to me. Dom, Brian, Casey, and Tanner make the chapters work. Without their efforts, our organization would be a very different thing. You guys are great.

The ladies in the office are amazing and flat handle it with me always on the road. Rebekah and Michelle keep the bills and PURSES paid for 230 events and tried to teach me accounting. Denise and Robin manage membership and all your entries (nice wedding Denise!). Marlena is the most creative person I know, and I am so glad you found us. Angela manages many high-profile projects like the Show, Awards, Grants and the Board. I am so lucky she is taking over something dear to my heart – Drive Chip and Putt. Finally, Molly Cooper, PGA. If you thought I work hard, Coop runs circles around me. She is in charge of both Tournaments & Membership – what else do we do? Five of us have been together for over 10 years – Marlena & Rebekah – 10; Angela – 13 and Molly – 17, and all are a big part of my world. Our amazing staff has enriched my life and we will be friends forever.

I have been asked what will I do on September 1? Pretty simple really – nurse a massive hangover and look forward to a To Do list that I have half a chance of completing!

I wish you all the very best and hope to see you down the road. I just may play in a few events. With that, I turn you over to our new CEO, Frank Talarico. You are in good hands.

Thank you all,


Cogswell Wins Northwest Open Invitational

by Molly Cooper, PGA - Director of Tournament & Member Programs

Amateur Nathan Cogswell of Meridian Valley CC won the Northwest Open Invitational by one stroke over PGA Professional David Phay of Whidbey G&CC. Cogswell is a junior at Seattle University and this marks his first PNW PGA win. He fired rounds of 68-66-134, 10-under.
Golfweek recently ranked Wine Valley GC #34 in the country for Best Golf Courses You Can Play. “The course does inspire your imagination,” said PGA Director of Golf Chris Isaacson.
The tournament began on the morning of Monday, August 17 with temperatures over 100 degrees, though the winds did cooperate. PGA Professional Matt Epstein of Inglewood GC and PGA Professional Birk Nelson of Orange Whip fired rounds of 66, 6-under par.
The second and final day of the event was another day of 100+ temperatures. Despite this, players managed to post low scores. Amateur Nathan Cogswell came from two strokes behind the leaders to win by one stroke after posting a final round with six birdies.
“With such a high quality field and a challenging golf course, it is a tremendous honor to win the Northwest Open this year,” said Cogswell. Asked how this event compared to a collegiate event, he responded, “I think in some ways it is similar to a collegiate event in that the strength of the field is high. It takes a special week in college golf in order to get a win. You have to be at the top of your game and you must be able to eliminate big mistakes, the same can be said for this event.”
Cogswell mentioned that, “winning the NW Open is a confidence boost for me because it is such a big event in the section and in the Northwest. I can take many things that I learned from those two days of competition and use them going forward. I won't linger on the win too much though because I am always focused on what I need to prepare for next. It is nice to enjoy a victory like this, but I am excited to build on it with the tournaments that I have coming up.”
As for his plans for the future, Cogswell will try to qualify for the PGA Tour. “Much of that depends on my quality of play in the next two seasons and that will determine which route of qualifying I will take. I understand that it is a long tough road to getting your tour card, but it has always been a dream of mine to play among the best on the PGA Tour.”
We’d like to thank Wine Valley GC for hosting yet another Northwest Open Invitational. Thank you to PGA Director of Golf Chris Isaacson, Assistant PGA Professional Brady Sharp, Superintendent Tyler Daniels and their staffs for a fantastic week. We look forward to returning to Wine Valley GC again for the 2021 Senior Players’ Championship and 2021 Northwest Open Invitational.

Final Results

Points Lists

OMEGA Player of the Year
1. Brady Sharp - 267.5
2. Birk Nelson - 192.5
3. Darren Black - 166
Assistant Player of the Year
1. Brady Sharp - 467.5
2. Shane Prante - 445
3. Colin Inglis - 415
OMEGA Senior Player of the Year
1. Jeff Coston - 100
2. Tom Sovay - 95
3. Mark Keating - 90
Hudson Cup
1. Brady Sharp - 275
2. Birk Nelson - 207.5
3. Darren Black - 175
Senior Hudson Cup
1. Jeff Coston- 277.5
2. Brent Murray - 230
3. Rob Gibbons - 215
    Tom Sovay - 215
View Full Points Lists

The entry deadline is approaching for the PNW PGA Professional Championship presented by Club Car and OMEGA. Enter by September 9th at 11:59 PM. This year’s championship will take place September 22-24 at Canyon River GC in Missoula, MT. You may register through PGA of America Membership Services online at

This event is only open to PGA Members who are employed and classified in one of the eligible membership classifications (see PDF) as of September 9 including LMA and LMMA. The PGA of America Headquarters records must reflect this status at time of entry and on the Section entry deadline.

The top 7 qualifiers will advance directly to the 2021 PGA Professional Championship presented by Club Car and OMEGA, held at PGA Golf Club (Wanamaker & Ryder Courses) in Port St Lucie on April 25-28, 2021.

Even if you don’t advance, you’ll have an amazing three days of competition with your fellow PNW PGA professionals at Canyon River GC!

Holk's Highlights: Justin Gravatt

Name: Justin Gravatt

Facility: The Home Course

Hometown: Olympia, WA

PGA Member Since: 2010

Tell us about your golf beginnings.  How did you get started?  Why did you decide to pursue this career?

My aunt and uncle had a place out at Alderbrook Golf & Yacht Club in Union Washington. My dad and I would drive from Olympia every Saturday to play early in the morning before the Men’s Club would tee off. I have so many fond memories at Alderbrook. One that left a lasting impression on me was my time spent with the PGA Head Professional at the time, Mike Fields. He was and is what the PGA Professional represents. He was kind, patient and his passion for golf was infectious. There were times that I would just watch Mike interact with customers and members. He was not only knowledgeable and inviting, but most of all it was obvious he really loved being a golf professional. That’s when I decided that I didn’t just want to be a PGA Professional, but I wanted to be a PGA Professional like Mike Fields.

What is this tax lodging grant magic that you use to find extra funding?

One question that I get often from fellow golf professionals is about our use of lodging tax grants to help fund events and promotions. So many of our local facilities and associations could also benefit from this underutilized resource.  For those of you that are not familiar, lodging tax is the fee that hotels collect when you book a hotel room. By law, those funds must be redistributed in the form of a grant for the purpose of generating additional tourism for the area. Basically, if you host an event that has golfers staying overnight in local hotels, you also can receive these funds.

Read More

Employment Opportunities

Monte Koch, PGA of America Employment Consultant

These are primarily “PGA Professional” only positions posted on the PGA Career Services Job Board:

Internship, non-PGA positions, strictly retail and “franchise” ownership positions will not be listed here.Please visit to see these types of opportunities. 

Note: these are listed as of 8 AM, August 28, 2020. Positions listed here are not guaranteed to be available. Visit to see the most current listings.

Assistant Golf Professional Positions (Full-time, not Internships)

Job Title Facility PGA Contact (if applicable)
ASSISTANT GOLF PROFESSIONAL Gearhart Golf Links Jason Bangild, PGA

Teaching and Coaching Positions

Job Title Facility PGA Contact (if applicable)

Management Positions

Note: not all positions like these will be posted here in all cases; instead, postings here will, generally, be at the request/approval of the Employer.
Job Title Facility PGA Contact (if applicable)
HEAD GOLF PROFESSIONAL Meadow Lark CC, Great Falls, MT  
HEAD GOLF PROFESSIONAL Twin Lakes G&CC, Federal Way, WA Dave Hobson, PGA

It's Time to Say Goodbye to Your Careerlinks Profile

CareerLinks is Phasing Out Soon! Take Just a Few Minutes and Update Your Job Preferences Today Your CareerLinks Profile will soon go away. If you want to see current job opportunities, you need to update your Job Preferences on  Unlike the old CL profile, this just takes 2-3 mins (not 20+.)

By updating your "Job Preferences" on, you'll start to see open positions similar to your preferences listed on your dashboard (see picture below.)

We are asking PGA Members and Associates to make these updates by clicking here, even if you aren't an active job seeker.

Pros on the Move

by Robin Lindsey, Tournament & Membership Coordinator

Employment Changes
  • Christian M. Ballard, PGA (A-23) - from The GC at Newcastle to Acushnet Co.
  • Hagen Dickinson (B-6) - from Allenmore Public GC to Meadow Park GC
  • Julian J Rivera (B-8) - from Trysting Tree GC to The Reserve Vineyards & GC
Classification Changes
  • none

New Associates

  • Logan B. Lindholm (B-8) - Village Greens GC
  • Alex M. Plusquellec (B-8) - Oswego Lake CC

Newly Elected Members

  • Philip G. Kohnken, PGA (A-14) - Lake Padden GC
Transfers INTO the Section
  • Donald A. Parker, PGA (A-6) to Gig Harbor, WA from Illinois 
  • Louis Runge, PGA (LM) to Seattle, WA from Southern Texas
Transfers OUT of the Section
  • Jacob R. Duenckel - from Washington National GC to Northern Texas 
  • Koll M. Farman, PGA - from The GC at Newcastle to Southern California 
New Half Century Members
  • Bob Sproule, PGA of The Dalles, OR

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