WE ARE GOLF, a coalition of four of the game’s leading associations, was announced today as an initiative to change the face of golf and to represent the economic, human and environmental benefits of the industry at federal, state and local levels of government.
Founded by the Club Managers Association of America, Golf Course Superintendents Association of America, National Golf Course Owners Association, and The PGA of America, WE ARE GOLF was created as a broad-based coalition to maximize the industry’s synergy and reduce redundancy. The membership will include participation from association members, multi-course owners, manufacturers and golf facilities.
“The solidarity the industry has shown by creating WE ARE GOLF is not only encouraging, but critically important,” said Mike Hughes, CEO of the National Golf Course Owners Association.
“Together, golf represents billions of dollars in economic impact; and, together, we will benefit from an even stronger industry that has the recognition and respect it deserves in Washington and throughout the country.”
WE ARE GOLF builds on the momentum of the past two National Golf Day events conducted in Washington, D.C., and collaborative efforts in executing numerous state economic impact studies. The 2 million jobs generated by the multi-billion-dollar industry, and the industry’s vast economic impact, are at the core of the coalition’s message.
“Golf is a stable, healthy industry with substantive impact on our local , state and national economies, but there are lingering, sometimes damaging misperceptions of our sport,” said PGA of America CEO Joe Steranka. “Golf must have a voice in aligning its perception with its real values. WE ARE GOLF engages our industry in an unprecedented collaboration to achieve legislative goals on small business, as well as labor, tax and environmental matters. “
The coalition has engaged The Podesta Group, a Washington, D.C.-based government and public affairs firm, which brings an experienced team to address the golf industry’s legislative challenges and help with advocacy efforts.
“We have learned that even though we have made some progress, the audiences that we are targeting do not know enough about our industry and how it has been affected by past legislation,” said Mark Woodward, CEO of the Golf Course Superintendents Association of America. “Take the environment, for example. Golf courses provide the infrastructure to help communities manage runoff and the green space provides a variety of benefits. WE ARE GOLF will intensify our efforts to inform and educate on issues such as this.”
WE ARE GOLF will work to share information, case studies and articles with media, elected officials, regulators and other key constituents to inform them on issues of concern. The coalition will also coordinate messaging to the industry’s vast infrastructure.
“For decades, golf facilities have remained one of the most sustainable small businesses in each local community,” said Jim Singerling, CEO of the Club Managers Association of America. “Golf facilities are good neighbors, providing resources that impact both individuals and other small businesses. WE ARE GOLF looks forward to working with The Podesta Group and engaging their expertise to share golf’s great stories.”
About the Club Managers Association of America
The Club Managers Association of America is the professional Association for managers of membership clubs. CMAA has close to 7,000 members across all classifications. Manager members run more than 3,000 country, golf, city, athletic, faculty, yacht, town and military clubs. The objectives of the Association are to promote and advance friendly relations among persons connected with the management of clubs and other associations of similar character; to encourage the education and advancement of members; and to assist club officers and members, through their managers, to secure the utmost in efficient and successful operations.
About the Golf Course Superintendents Association of America
GCSAA is a leading golf organization and has as its focus golf course management. Since 1926, GCSAA has been the top professional association for the men and women who manage golf courses in the United States and worldwide. From its headquarters in Lawrence, Kan., the association provides education, information and representation to more than 20,000 members in more than 72 countries. GCSAA’s mission is to serve its members, advance their profession and enhance the enjoyment, growth and vitality of the game of golf. The association’s philanthropic organization, The Environmental Institute for Golf, works to strengthen the compatibility of golf with the natural environment through research grants, support for education programs and outreach efforts. Visit GCSAA at www.gcsaa.org.
About the National Golf Course Owners Association
The National Golf Course Owners Association is the leading authority on the business of golf course ownership and management. The Association represents the key decision makers with ultimate responsibility for golf courses throughout the world. Through advocacy, information resources, purchasing programs and networking opportunities, the NGCOA helps golf course owners and operators run more successful businesses. For more information, visit www.ngcoa.org.
About The PGA of America
Since 1916, The PGA of America’s mission has been twofold: to establish and elevate the standards of the profession and to grow interest and participation in the game of golf.
By establishing and elevating the standards of the golf profession through world-class education, career services, marketing and research programs, the Association enables PGA Professionals to maximize their performance in their respective career paths and showcases them as experts in the game and in the multi-billion dollar golf industry.
By creating and delivering dramatic world-class championships and exciting and enjoyable golf promotions that are viewed as the best of their class in the golf industry, The PGA of America elevates the public’s interest in the game, the desire to play more golf, and ensures accessibility to the game for everyone, everywhere. The PGA of America brand represents the very best in golf.