SBJ/July 1-7, 2013/Leagues and Governing Bodies

PGA’s new CMO leading effort to open N.Y. office

The moving truck sitting in Kevin Ring’s Cleveland driveway last week won’t be going to Florida after all.

The PGA of America’s chief marketer will be going to New York instead.

Ring
Ring, who was named the PGA’s CMO in February, is spearheading the effort to open the PGA’s first sales and marketing office in New York, giving it a presence there that it’s never had before.

The PGA originally planned for Ring to move to its Palm Beach Gardens, Fla., headquarters, but reconsidered during the transition. Ring said he and PGA CEO Pete Bevacqua agreed earlier this spring for Ring to go to New York, and they began looking for sites.

After exploring Manhattan, they settled on space in Elmsford, N.Y., just north of Manhattan, in what’s called “Golf Central.” It’s a site near White Plains that also includes headquarters for the Metropolitan PGA Section and the Metropolitan Golf Association. The office will give PGA of America executives coming from Florida a place to work and meet, as well as providing a home base for Ring.

“It’s just a natural place for us to be,” said Ring, a former IMG consulting executive. “As we looked at our long-term planning, this just seemed to make sense to us.”

Bevacqua, who travels to New York two or three times a month, said he looked forward to “establishing a foothold in the New York metropolitan area.”

Other golf entities already have a presence in the New York market. The U.S. Golf Association is based in Far Hills, N.J., while the PGA Tour has a four-person office in Manhattan. Julie Tyson, vice president of business development, oversees the tour’s office there.

The LPGA previously had a sales office in New York, until the July 2012 death of Christine Howard. The women’s tour is now looking into establishing an office in Asia. Although details have not been finalized, the LPGA hopes to have that office open by the end of the year.

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