The USGA As An Organization And
February 3, 2007
The following is an excerpt from USGA President Walter
Driver's speech at the Annual Meeting in San Francisco,
As the governing body of golf in the United States and Mexico,
we are determined to lead with excellence, inside and out. Our
mission and core belief is
the game and how it is played
. We want to better serve all golfers in our jurisdictions. The
world is changing and we have to be open to change in an effort
to remain stewards for the future of the USGA and the game of
golf. We will embrace change so we change at the same rate the
world changes; we are preparing for it and will be able to
confront it head on.
The USGA Executive Committee and staff spent a great deal of
time, study, debate and planning on this. We intend to (1)
improve the platform of the USGA so that the USGA is organized to
golf and economic challenges and (2) build the best staff and
volunteer team. We believe you will see the USGA is getting
it does. You will see more evolution to meet current needs.
|USGA president Walter Driver delivers his
speech at the Annual Meeting on Feb. 3 in San Francisco.
To build the best staff possible, we spent a large amount of
time reviewing the current compensation and benefit programs,
structure, and hiring needs in an effort to build a solid
foundation for the future. The USGA can now continue to recruit
and retain top talent and staff.
We also reviewed the size and structure of every USGA
volunteer committee to determine the ideal size range, job
description, term limits if necessary, recruitment and selection
method for new members and a two-year transitional plan.
Volunteers are the lifeblood of the organization and we
couldn't do our job without their help. We recognized that
every USGA committee has unique characteristics and as a result
we developed a plan that promotes accountability and consistency
while allowing flexibility to maintain each committee's
uniqueness and expertise. Each Chairman has communicated or is in
the process of communicating the results to their respective
committees. This will provide for a strong future with dynamic,
dedicated and diverse committee members. We thank the committee
members and Chairs for their leadership and commitment to the
USGA and the game of golf.
We have recently announced corporate partnerships with
American Express and Lexus. The corporate partners program will
allow the USGA to reach more golfers and educate them on our
programs and initiatives. This will strengthen the USGA Members
program as part of the golf community and improve our
communication with the golfing population. Both companies share
many of our values, beliefs and high standards. With American
Express, the USGA can help AMEX add value to millions of
cardholders while allowing the USGA the opportunity to educate
them about our Association and its programs. Lexus will become
the official car of the U.S. Open, U.S. Women's Open, U.S.
Senior Open and U.S. Amateur, alleviating a huge operational
issue of our needing 10,000-12,000 "car nights"
throughout championship season. These partnerships will benefit
both partners and, ultimately, golfers as well.
We are also exploring new ways to use the Internet and better
communicate to USGA members, volunteers, players, fans and the
golf community. Golf has become increasingly global. In 2006, the
U.S. Open television broadcast was seen in excess of 150 nations.
USOpen.com received 117 million page views and provided streaming
video during the week of the championship. The ideas are
unlimited and very exciting - the harder part will be
prioritization and implementation. This is yet another example of
continued evolution of the USGA's business model.
You may ask "why are we doing this?" And the answer
Built to Last
Built to Last
is the leading business management "bible" and has been
New York Times
Best Seller list for years. The keys to building a lasting,
effective institution include:
- Preserve the core and change the process - Absolute
dedication to the game but keep up with distribution and
media challenges and equipment technology
- Big, audacious goals - best championships in golf,
superior volunteers, great player experience, make the
game more affordable and accessible
- Cult-like cultures - boy, have we got that!
- Try a lot of things and keep what works - this is
what we are doing, open-minded, determined to constantly
We all want to pass down our love of the game to the next
generation. I hope every one of you makes that a priority in