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PGA TOUR CHIEF FINCHEM CELEBRATES ONE YEAR ANNIVERSARY
Published June 1, 1995
PGA Tour Commissioner Tim Finchem's first year as head of the Tour is examined by John Hawkins of the WASHINGTON TIMES. Hawkins reflects on the challenges Finchem faced from the Fox/Greg Norman World Tour idea to the FTC probe. Hawkins writes Finchem "has done a fine job steering this Good Ship Lollipop. ... Finchem is plenty sharp enough to know the Tour should be run from the inside out. ... Television is obviously a major piece of the puzzle, but as long as an individual sport like golf can give birth to personalities and superstars ... the marketing/promotions manual will write itself" (WASHINGTON TIMES, 6/1). Finchem also had a Q&A with the Associated Press. On golf widening its fan base: "Golf is moving in the direction of being more accessible to more people. There is more diversity to the sport. More minorities. More women." On the impact of TV: "The changing world of TV in the next five to 10 years is very, very important" (AP/WASHINGTON TIMES, 6/1). IMMIGRATION POLICY: Finchem is trying to get more foreign players to play on the PGA Tour. Foreign players may currently play five Tour events if eligible, but Finchem will recommend an increase to seven exemptions for them. Finchem: "It is healthy from the standpoint of strengthening our sponsor group, our corporate title sponsors, our television and the rest" (Steve Hershey, USA TODAY, 6/1). DEFENDING THE LPGA: "Contrary to some misconceptions making the rounds in the wake of the (Ben) Wright controversy, the LPGA is doing just fine," writes SI's Sally Jenkins. Jenkins does take some of the LPGA players to task for not responding during the flap: "Surely it doesn't do the LPGA image any good when players seem unwilling or unable to speak intelligently about a cultural or social issue. Confronted with some of the more profound problems in women's sports ... and given a national forum to discuss these problems, the players reacted with all the independent thought and spirit of the Stepford Wives" (SI, 6/5 issue).