A passion for golf unites three PGA Professionals who have earned special recognition in the latest round of APAL (Accreditation for Professional Achievement and Learning) awards.
Rod Davis from Playgolf Bournemouth, Roger Brown at Germany’s Hamburger Golf Club and Derek McKenzie from Thailand’s Santiburu Samui Country Club have all been accorded PGA Fellow Professional status.
The accolade reflects their varied and outstanding careers in golf to date.
Dorset-based Davis, 46, who combines estate manager and coaching roles at his facility, has enjoyed a wide-ranging career which began at Parkstone, included a stint at Canford Magna (where he designed a 9-hole par three course), a foreign foray to the Middle East and Abu Dhabi and back home at Remedy Oak which he helped design and develop.
Brown, 66, gained his first assistant’s role at West Sussex Golf Club and then moved to Porters Park, Hertfordshire where he spent two years chasing a European Tour card.
Injury curtailed his playing hopes but an opportunity in Denmark sparked a new chapter and head pro roles at Gilleleje and Odense Golf Clubs followed. He was also national coach for the Danish Golf Union and helped it develop into one of the strongest in Europe in the space of 10 years.
In 1990 he moved to Hamburger Golf Club as head professional and during his time there has been shortlisted for the German PGA Teacher of the Year award.
Also carving out a successful career overseas has been McKenzie, 44. Initially an assistant to Sandy Aird at Forres Golf Club he then joined the late Doug Smart at Banchory and then Brunston Castle.
A move to Germany’s Burg Zievel sparked a globe-trotting lifestyle which has also taken him to Egypt, at the Gary Player-designed The Cascades on the banks of the Red Sea, Mallorca and now Thailand where he is the general manager of the luxurious Santiburi Samui golf resort.
Still a keen player, he has also pursued academic studies with the Open University, completed the Certified Club Manager award with the Club Managers Association of Europe and is part way through an MBA with Herriot Watt University.
David Colclough, The PGA’s head of member education, commented: “Once again the APAL awards highlight the varied nature of activity that PGA Professionals engage in.
“Each one has gone on to good success within their own chosen field, and should provide inspiration to anyone looking to make their career in golf.
“The PGA is committed to providing opportunity to all its members to grow as a PGA Professional, and rewarding their success in whatever job role they may chose once they become PGA qualified.”
Also celebrating in the APAL awards are the following members who have all been accorded PGA Advanced Professional status: Tim Bamber (PGA HQ), Martin Beaty (Crompton & Royton), Justyn Branton (PGA West), Stephen Cox (Weybrook Park GC), Thomas Gibbs (Three Hammers Golf Complex), Neville Hallam (Alfreton GC), Steven Munro (UAE PGA) and Kelvin Vince (Rushmere GC).