The senior leadership structure of the PGA of Australia has been confirmed through until 2024 with Australian golf legend Rodger Davis to remain on as Chair and Gavin Kirkman to continue as Chief Executive Officer.
Davis was re-elected unopposed for a second term at the recent Annual General Meeting where the Board also endorsed Kirkman’s contract to continue in his role as CEO for a further three years.
At a time when golf’s popularity is booming yet the ongoing management of the COVID-19 pandemic makes forward planning challenging, Davis said that it was a positive that the PGA could provide a sense of certainty around its leadership team.
A booming sport
“The past 15 months have been obviously very challenging for everyone but golf in Australia has experienced a massive surge in interest and popularity,” said Davis.
“There have been logistical challenges in terms of staging golf tournaments yet our PGA Professionals around the country have gone above and beyond to make golf available in a COVID-safe environment at a time when many sports were unable to continue.
“Like everyone we are hoping that the worst is behind us and that we will return to a full summer of golf featuring both the Australian PGA Championship and Australian Open at the end of the year.
“I’m delighted to serve again as Chair for a second term and hope that myself and the Board of Directors can do our part to build on this surge in interest into another golden period for Australian golf.”
In reappointing Kirkman to the position of CEO, Davis and the PGA of Australia Board believe they have both rewarded his leadership in a difficult time and provided a much-needed sense of stability within the organisation.
It comes during an exciting time in Australian golf, with the PGA and Golf Australia set to move into a shared facility, the Australian Golf Centre, located opposite Royal Melbourne in Sandringham, and promises to reshape how golf is administered.
The alignment of Australia’s two biggest golf bodies will create efficiencies that will benefit the growth of the game at grassroots and professional level.
“Gavin has a long and distinguished history of working within the PGA and he and his team have navigated the past 18 months as well as could be expected,” Davis added.
“He is a proud promoter of our Vocational Members, is working closely with Golf Australia on creating a better overall environment for Australian golf and is actively engaged in the Australian Golf Industry Council.
“Gavin’s global golf relationships with the PGAs and Tours have put our association in a strong position and to think globally and act locally is key for our sport in Australia.
“We’re delighted that Gavin will be leading the PGA of Australia for the next four years.”
Thrilled to extend contract
Executive of PGA Queensland from 2002-2007, Kirkman spent six years as the PGA’s National Chief Membership Officer before stepping into the role as CEO in March 2017 and was thrilled to have his contract extended.
“I’m a great believer in the important role that PGA Professionals play in the health of golf in this country and overseas and I’m thrilled to continue as CEO of the PGA of Australia for a further three years,” Kirkman said.
“We have a host of outstanding young players ready to take their games to the world and our Vocational Members are working hard at the grassroots level and across all areas in golf to provide new and established golfers with a wonderful experience every time that they visit a golf facility.
“Our close collaboration with the WPGA Tour of Australasia is an exciting initiative with benefits at a number of different levels and we continue to work together and align with Golf Australia on a national strategy for the betterment of the game in Australia.
“Collectively we’re working on a number of industry projects, including engaging more women to play our game and improved opportunities to have careers in golf, strengthening our Tour opportunities for aspiring and existing professional golfers, and building on the success of non-traditional golf, such as driving range, mini golf and simulator golf facilities.
“I have no doubt that we are on the verge of a very exciting and critical time for the game in Australia and I am delighted that I will get to play a part in that.”