Recent industry hires and promotions include new General Managers at The Country Club in Brookline, Mass. and Oakland Hills Country Club in Bloomfield Hills, Mich., plus a new Head Golf Professional at Muirfield Village Golf Club in Dublin, Ohio and Golf Course Superintendent at Cider Ridge Golf Club in Oxford, Ala.
Here are some of the recent new hires and promotions announced by club and resort properties and other companies in the club industry. Announcements and photos for this regular People on the Move report can be submitted at https://clubandresortbusiness.com/submit-industry-news/.
The Country Club in Brookline, Mass. appointed Kristen B. LaCount, CCM, ECM as General Manager/COO, effective October 1. LaCount, who succeeds David Chag, CCM, upon his retirement after 33 years as General Manager, was recognized as a “Rising Star” through the 2018 Excellence in Club Management Awards (https://clubandresortbusiness.com/kristen-lacount-earns-rising-star-recognition-through-the-ecm-awards/) sponsored by the McMahon Group, Club + Resort Business and the National Club Association.
LaCount was born into The Country Club family. It started with her father Steven LaCount, who began to work in the TCC kitchen at the age of 14, and eventually became the youngest Executive Chef in the club’s history, in 1983. He would remain at TCC until 2005, when he and his wife Michelle opened a restaurant, the now-highly acclaimed Chiara Bistro in the Boston suburb of Westwood. But before he left, the baton was passed to his daughter Kristen to continue the LaCount legacy at the club.
And while Kristen first thought she might just be running a quick relay leg after starting at TCC, what she originally envisioned as a step toward pursuing her own culinary career evolved into a 16-year run marked by steady advancement through the club’s management ranks. Her ascent and contributions along the way, in helping TCC to maintain and expand its relevance and prominence.
The Floridian National Golf Club in Palm City, Fla. named Laddie Hunter as General Manager/COO. Hunter was previously Managing Director of The Golf Club at Lansdowne (Va.).
Oakland Hills Country Club in Bloomfield Hills, Mich. named Christine Pooler as General Manager/Chief Operating Officer. Pooler was most recently at Indian Creek Country Club in Indian Creek Village, Fla. She has also worked at The Vineyards, The Country Club of Rochester (N.Y.), Wilmington (Del.) Country Club, Merion Golf Club in Ardmore, Pa., and Augusta National Golf Club. Pooler is currently the chair of the National Club Association Board and is a past chapter president of the Club Management Association of America.
Reston (Va.) National Golf Course in Reston, Va. named Kris Anderson as General Manager. Anderson most recently served as General Manager at Holly Hills Country Club in Ijamsville, Md. He is a member of the PGA apprentice program and is a certified trainer for KemperSports’ proprietary True Service program.
Sharon Heights Golf & Country Club in Menlo Park, Calif. named Thorsten Loth as General Manager. Loth was most recently General Manager at Cherry Hills Country Club in Cherry Hills Village, Colo. He will be taking over for Sharon Heights’ former COO, Michael Nakahara, who resigned in March.
Ryan Kenny, CCM, CCE, General Manager/COO of the Dedham (Mass.) Country & Polo Club, was named “Club Manager of the Year” by his peers of the New England Chapter of the Club Management Association of America. This award is given annually to a club manager who exemplifies professionalism in club management and embodies the characteristics, ethics and standards toward which all practitioners of club management should strive.
Woods Valley Golf Club in Valley Center, Calif. named Eric Julian as General Manager, John Gray as Head Golf Professional and David Vastola as Golf Course Superintendent. Julian joined Woods Valley Golf Club from Monarch Beach Golf Links in Dana Point, Calif. Gray came from La Costa Resort in Carlsbad, Calif., while Vastola has worked at Monarch Beach Golf Links and Los Angeles Country Club.
Muirfield Village Golf Club in Dublin, Ohio named John Ogden as Head Golf Professional. Ogden was most recently Head Golf Professional at Cherry Hills Country Club in Cherry Hills Village, Colo. He will be replacing Larry Dornisch, who is retiring at the end of the year.
Coral Creek Club in Placida, Fla. named Jim Lohbauer as Head Golf Professional. Prior to joining Coral Creek Club, Lohbauer was one of the lead professionals on the staff at Charlotte (N.C.) Country Club. He also served as the Greater Charlotte Area PGA Director. Before Lohbauer’s tenure at Charlotte Country Club, he also served as Executive Director of Golf at River Run Country Club in Davidson, N.C., Head Golf Professional at Deerwood Country Club in Jacksonville, Fla., General Manager/Head Golf Professional at Tradition Golf Club in Charlotte and Head Golf Professional at Highland Creek Golf Club, Charlotte.
Cider Ridge Golf Club in Oxford, Ala. named Brian Woods as Golf Course Superintendent. Woods will oversee agronomy operations and a staff of 12 for the 18-hole daily fee facility. Woods most recently served as the Gold Course Superintendent at Tiburón Golf Club, a 36-hole, Troon-managed facility in Naples, Fla.
The Club Foundation announced the 2021 recipients of the Sally Burns Rambo Scholarship. Established in 2012 by The Club Foundation with the assistance of the Texas Lone Star Chapter of the Club Management Association of America (CMAA), the Sally Burns Rambo Scholarship honors mentor, role model, and pioneer Sally Burns Rambo, CCM, who paved the way for the success of countless club industry leaders. The 2021 recipients are:
Kaitlyn Allen, Indian Hills Country Club, Mission Hills, Kan.
Kate Nolte, The Country Club at DC Ranch, Scottsdale, Ariz.
Debbie Pagerie, Indian Trail Club, Franklin Lakes, N.J.
Pamela Radcliff, Bay Colony Golf Club, Naples, Fla.
Amanda Sprenger, The Country Club at Mirasol, Palm Beach Gardens, Fla.
Hannah Street, Wildwood Golf Club, Allison Park, Pa.
Sanctuary on Camelback Mountain Resort & Spa in Scottsdale, Ariz. appointed Samantha Sanz as Chef de Cuisine and Christiaan Röllich as Bar Chef. Sanz was most recently Chef de Cuisine of Talavera, the signature restaurant at Four Seasons Resort Scottsdale at Troon North. Röllich hails from A.O.C. and Lucques, two of the most celebrated restaurants in Los Angeles and is the author of BAR CHEF: Handcrafted Cocktails (2019).
The Standard Club in Johns Creek, Ga. named Scott Meyer as Executive Chef. Meyer will oversee all facets of food service and preparation, across The Standard Club’s multiple dining venues. Meyer most recently served as the executive sous chef at the Georgia Tech Hotel and Conference Center in Atlanta.
Jim Richerson, PGA was elected the 42nd President of the PGA of America. Richerson is Senior Vice President of Operations for Troon, and a member of the Southwest PGA Section. He succeeds Suzy Whaley, who completed her two-year term as president and is now PGA Honorary President. Succeeding Richerson as Vice President is John Lindert, PGA, Director of Golf/Chief Operating Officer at The Country Club of Lansing (Mich.). Don Rea, PGA, Owner and General Manager of Augusta Ranch Golf Club in Mesa, Ariz., was elected as the new PGA Secretary. Four new members of the PGA Board of Directors were sworn in:
– District 2: John Pillar, PGA – PGA Director of Golf, The County Club at Woodloch Springs – Hawley, Pa. – (Metropolitan, New Jersey, Philadelphia PGA Sections)
– District 4: Ed Habjan, PGA – Head Golf Professional, Green Oaks Country Club – Verona, Pa. – (Central New York, Tri-State, Western New York PGA Sections)
– District 8: Greg Neujahr, PGA – Director of Golf, Champions Run – Omaha, Neb. – (Iowa, Minnesota, Nebraska PGA Sections)
– District 9: Jared Barnes, PGA – Head Golf Professional at Cedar Ridge Golf Course – Cedar City, Utah – (Colorado, Rocky Mountain, Utah PGA Sections)
NBC Sports Group Digital named Jerramy Hainline as Senior Vice President and General Manager for GolfNow. GolfNow SVP Jeff Foster will be leaving the company at the end of the year. Hainline most recently was responsible for managing all sales strategies for both GolfNow and Golf Advisor. Prior to joining GolfNow, Hainline spent 11 years with Hilton Worldwide as both Corporate Director of Golf Sales & Marketing, and Director of the Hilton Golf Academy.