Mike Davis, the major force behind setting up golf courses for USGA – among his many responsibilities – has sent an annual open letter to all USGA members, wrapping up the 2012 season.
Here it is:
Dear USGA Member,
As another year comes to a close, I would like to thank you for your support of the United States Golf Association and all of our activities to preserve and protect the wonderful game of golf.
Since 1894, one of our primary missions is to conduct national championships, and there was plenty of memorable action in 2012, including Webb Simpson’s gutsy play at the U.S. Open, Na Yeon Choi’s remarkable third-round 65 in the U.S. Women’s Open, and the stirring finish at the U.S. Amateur by Steven Fox, who won the last three holes of his 37-hole triumph over Michael Weaver.
While those three champions were first-time USGA winners, we had several golfers who added to their USGA championship trophy cases. U.S. Women’s Mid-Amateur champion Meghan Stasi and U.S. Mid-Amateur winner Nathan Smith captured their respective championship for a fourth time. Paul Simson won the USGA Senior Amateur for the second time in three years, while Ellen Port added the USGA Senior Women’s Amateur to four U.S. Women’s Mid-Amateur victories.
In addition to helping us to provide arenas of competition for elite golfers, your Membership allows us to serve all golfers at all levels through our support of numerous activities that make the game more fun and welcoming. Tee It Forward has received an overwhelmingly positive response from participants, while programs such as The First Tee and LPGA-USGA Girls Golf have introduced the game to thousands of youngsters around the country.
In 2012, we collaborated with The R&A to publish the latest edition of the Rules of Golf. For the first time, the book has the same look and design regardless of where you are in the world. We also collaborated with The R&A on a proposed Rule that would prohibit anchored strokes, in an effort to preserve the traditional character of the golf swing and the challenge of the game.
All of these programs and initiatives help make golf more sustainable, as do the efforts of the USGA Green Section, which promotes responsible course-maintenance practices and funds research to develop new grasses that are more resistant to heat and require less water.
The availability of water is a major concern for golf courses in many parts of the country. In November, the USGA convened a summit about water that brought together experts from golf, science, industry and government to lay out a road map that will address one of the game’s biggest challenges.
As a USGA Member, you play a valuable role in helping our staff and volunteers perform these and many other important tasks. All of us at the USGA look forward to your continued support in 2013 and beyond. To learn more about everything that we do for the good of the game, visit www.usga.org.
Thank you again for your support of the USGA, and best wishes for a happy and healthy 2013.
USGA Executive Director