Grass elected 2016 GCSAA president
More than 12,500 attend Golf Industry Show in San Diego
SAN DIEGO, Calif., USA — Peter J. Grass, golf course superintendent at Hilands Golf Club in Billings, Montana, USA, was been elected to a 1-year term as president of the Golf Course Superintendents Association of America (GCSAA) at the association’s annual meeting held Feb. 11, in conjunction with the Golf Industry Show in San Diego.
GCSAA (www.gcsaa.org) is golf’s leading association dedicated to golf course management and environmental stewardship worldwide. Formed in 1926, GCSAA provides education, information and representation to some 18,000 members in more than 78 countries.
For nearly 90 years, the association has been superintendent-led by people like the aptly named Grass, a certified golf course superintendent (CGCS) who served as GCSAA vice president in 2015, and has been a member of its board of directors since 2009. A 31-year member of GCSAA, Grass succeeds John J. O’Keefe, CGCS and director of golf course management at Preakness Hills Country Club in Wayne, N.J., who served as president for 2015. O’Keefe will continue on the board as immediate past president.
“A lot of people have told me how cool they think it is that someone from a 9-hole facility can serve on the board of directors and become president of the association,” Grass said. “But if I can convince others that they too can benefit from being a GCSAA member, than I’ll consider my year in office to be a success.”
Other newly elected officers included Bill H. Maynard, CGCS and director of golf course maintenance operations at Country Club of St. Albans near St. Louis, as vice president, and Darren J. Davis, CGCS and superintendent at Olde Florida Golf Club in Naples, Fla., as secretary/treasurer.
The elections of Grass, Maynard and Davis took place at the close of the 2016 Golf Industry Show, which saw a rise in all measures — including total attendance (12,600) and qualified buyer attendance (6,000). During the trade show, Feb. 9-10, attendees were able to view the latest golf facility solutions and interact with more than 550 exhibitors spanning 250,000 net square feet of exhibit space here at the San Diego Convention Center.
“The Golf Industry Show has a bigger international presence than the PGA Show, and that is beneficial,” said Joey Panozzo, vice president of sales in North America for Garia Inc., a 10-year-old Denmark company and maker of luxury golf cars and utility vehicles. “This is a significant investment, but a worthwhile one for us. We will be back, I guarantee you. We are making sales and finding new dealers.”
The GCSAA Education Conference, held in conjunction with the Golf Industry Show, welcomed 5,240 seminar participants, as well as hundreds who attended complimentary forums, sessions and panel discussions throughout the week. Subject matter included agronomics, business, environmental management, communications, leadership, technology, and personnel management.
The 2017 Golf Industry Show will head to Orlando, Fla., Feb. 4-9. That event, like this year’s GIS, will be presented jointly with the National Golf Course Owners Association (NGCOA), along with supporting organizations, the Golf Course Builders Association of America (GCBAA), the American Society of Course Architects (ASGCA), the National Golf Foundation (NGF) and the United States Golf Association (USGA