Local Knowledge

September 2022


The Texas Golf Association, in collaboration with the United States Golf Association, will be conducting two World Handicap System (WHS) Seminars the last week of September. The first will be held Sept. 27 at Dallas Athletic Club in Dallas, and the second is scheduled for Sept. 28 at Augusta Pines Golf Club in Spring.

The seminars will be led by Terry Benjamin of the USGA® Handicap Department and will focus on the WHS with discussions and solutions to common situations that take place within a golf club, including how the Handicap Index® is calculated, WHS Changes and Safeguards, and the important role of the Handicap Committee.

After the PowerPoint presentation, attendees will be emailed a link to take an optional open-book quiz online.

The seminars are open to TGA Member Club management and staff, handicap chairs, and golfers interested in learning more about the WHS. The cost of each seminar is $45 per attendee, which includes lunch and a copy of the USGA’s Rules of Handicapping Manual, Handicapping Reference Guide, and digital copy of the Handicap Committee Guide (emailed upon request). Space is limited, so sign up now and be a part of an informative, interactive session with a USGA Handicapping expert!

For more information and to register online for the Sept. 27 TGA/WHS Seminar at Dallas Athletic Club, click here. For more information and to register online for the Sept. 28 TGA/WHS Seminar at Augusta Pines Golf Club, click here.


The summer before her senior year of high school, Claire Kirby of Lubbock wanted to land a summer job that wasn’t being a waitress, server, or an office assistant, all of which she had done previously.

What she really wanted was to find a job in the golf industry, something that aligned with her passion for the game. And that’s where the TGA Foundation’s Bill Penn Internship Program came into play.

Established in 2016, the Bill Penn Internship Program gives high school students interested in pursuing a career in the golf industry the opportunity to work at a TGA Member Club in order to gain a greater understanding of the wide array of job opportunities available within the industry and the directions they take with their educational endeavors and career paths.

Kirby successfully completed the interview process and secured a 10-week paid summer internship in her hometown at Lubbock Country Club. She excelled during her time at the club, where her duties included working in the golf shop, accounting, tournament administration, and even helping with the club’s social media efforts.

The experience proved so rewarding for Kilby that she has continued to seek out and attain additional internships in the golf industry while attending college.

To read more about how Kilby used the Bill Penn Internship Program as a springboard to success and to expand her horizons both on and off the golf course, click here.


The Texas Alliance of Recreational Organizations (TARO) will be hosting its Annual Allied Association Meeting on Thursday, October 27, at Royal Oaks Country Club in Dallas.

This event is open to all club industry professionals and allied association members, which includes but is not limited to the Northern and Southern Texas Sections of the PGA, Texas Chapters of the Club Management, Golf Course Superintendents and United States Tennis Associations of America, Texas Golf Association, and Texas Turfgrass Association.

The foremost purpose of TARO is to participate effectively in the state’s legislative and regulatory processes for the benefit of its supporters and their constituents. TARO also serves to educate its supporters on issues affecting them and to foster good will among its supporters by preparation and circulation of periodic publications and sponsorship of educational programs.

This year’s keynote speakers will be Brad Steele, Founder, Private Club Consultants, and Gib Lewis, TARO Lobbyist and former Speaker of the Texas House of Representatives.

Registration is complimentary; however, attendees are asked to make a voluntary donation to TARO PAC, which supports the campaigns of those committed to maintaining a healthy business environment for Texas clubs. (By law, TARO PAC can only accept personal checks from individuals.)

For more information and to register online for the TARO 2022 Allied Association Meeting, click here.


Experts say the key to staff retention goes way beyond paying higher salaries

Yes, it’s challenging to hire and retain staff nowadays. That’s what happens when the unemployment rate drops below 4%, as it did nationwide this spring.

“Pre-COVID there was a large group of service employees who were performing very well in their jobs,” said Jay Salem, chief operating officer for GSI Executive Search in Dallas. “But when the virus arrived, some probably left because of illness or declined to work due to fear about getting sick. Some stayed home because they were receiving stimulus checks.

“And unfortunately, now, though business has grown to a better level, many people haven’t come back to those jobs. Many food service areas of clubs are still having a hard time filling position.”

Even though GSI specializes in finding candidates for management positions at equity clubs, Salem understands the difficulties golf clubs are facing in hiring service employees.

One solution: Minimize your hiring needs by cutting down on employee attrition.

In a story for Golf Inc.’s digital magazine, author Rebecca Larsen takes a closer look at what experts say are some basic things that courses can do to minimize staff turnover.

To read more about Minimizing Employee Turnover, click here.