As part of his many duties, PGA of America President Jim Remy welcomed participants to the Youth Clinic on Monday in Cleveland. (Pritchard/The PGA of America)
President's Diary: I've been waiting for this week all year
In the first installment of his diary this week, PGA of America President Jim Remy discusses his love for the Senior PGA Championship and explains how he spends much of his time.
By Jim Remy, PGA of America President
BEACHWOOD, Ohio -- This Senior PGA Championship has a special place in my heart, and not just because it's the first major championship of The PGA of America that I'm attending as President, but because it's one of my favorite events in golf. There are so many great players here, great champions of golf and people that have been integral to the history of this game, and they also happen to be great people. We have a defending champion in Jay Haas who happens to be one of the nicest and most gracious people you could ever meet, on or off a golf course.
To be honest, I started thinking about this event last year in Rochester when Jay held on to win at Oak Hill -- and I realized that I would get to come to this event as President, come to Canterbury -- one of the great old golf courses in the country, and come here with Jay as defending champion. If you go back and look at the film, you'll see a big smile on my face at the trophy presentation, and knowing this week was coming was a big reason why. And my anticipation for this has grown ever since.
I want to take a moment to talk about what I've been doing as President of The PGA of America since my election in November of 2008. It's the question I've been asked most often, naturally, and that's, "What does the President do?" Being the President means being the Chairman of the Board and the spokesperson of The PGA of America. It also means you're busy.
We travel a great deal. Last week we were in Washington promoting National Golf Day, before that I was in Ponte Vedra at The Players Championship; it's a whirlwind at times. But it's important that our association and our 28,000 members are represented and have an advocate at such events, and one of my responsibilities is to do just that. It's not all golf tournaments and interviews, a lot of it is meetings and governance.
It's not a position designed to be all fun by any means. It can be taxing and difficult at times. But in the end, it is so rewarding because I get to serve in this capacity in an industry that is clean, fun, healthy, full of integrity and a sport people love to play, watch and enjoy as a lifestyle.
So that brings me back to Cleveland this week and this amazing 70th Senior PGA Championship. We had a wonderful Senior PGA Championship last year at Oak Hill but the weather was part of the storyline. If you recall, there was some wind and drizzle and a significant chill in the air. This year, the only mention of the weather is going to be "Where can I get some of this?" The forecast at least says it is going to be picture perfect and so far this week, it has been.
If you're in the Cleveland or Northern Ohio area and you don't come out this week to watch these great champions, you're missing out on one of the real opportunities in your life. This might be the best field we've ever had a the Senior PGA Championship, at one of the most revered golf facilities in the country, designed and routed this week to provide the most optimal viewing experience for fans, in perfect weather conditions -- I mean, what more could you want?
So this week, thus far, has been ideal. Well, other than my team didn't win the Pro-Am Tuesday, but we put up a good fight and had a great time. But aside from that, from the Past Champions dinner Tuesday night to the many association meetings we've had to the time spent with players and fans, it's been tremendous. And I'm telling you, it's only going to get better.
If you're a sports fan, a golf fan, be sure you are watching this week -- at home on television or if you're in the Cleveland area, come out to the course! Kids get in free with a paid adult, so bring your young golfer. I'm grateful to serve as President of an association that I love and admire, but this week, I'll also be grateful to have an up close view of this very special championship. Hope to see you all here.