USGA’s Golf Equipment Testing Achieves International Quality Standard

May 5, 2011

Far Hills, N.J. – The United States Golf Association’s Equipment Standards Department has achieved ISO 9001 Quality Management System certification. In order to attain this internationally recognized standard, the Equipment Standards staff met specific process and communications benchmarks, and demonstrated a commitment to continual improvement.

The Equipment Standards Department of the USGA evaluates golf balls and clubs to determine conformance to the Rules of Golf. Its 20,000-square-foot Research and Test Center houses a team of engineers, technicians and administrative personnel who test and evaluate more than 1,000 different types of golf balls and more than 2,500 golf clubs submitted for review annually. In addition, the Equipment Standards Department conducts research to monitor equipment technology and its potential effects on the game.

“Since we have the responsibility to determine the conformance of golf equipment submitted to us by manufacturers, it is essential that the testing that we perform and the business processes that we use be carried out in a controlled and consistent manner,” said Dick Rugge, senior technical director for the USGA. “Achieving ISO 9001 certification confirms that we do exactly that.”

ISO 9001 is an International Quality Management System Standard that specifies requirements under which an organization must demonstrate its ability to consistently provide products or services that meet customer requirements, to enhance customer satisfaction and to establish benchmarks for continual improvement.

The International Organization for Standardization is a worldwide federation of national standards bodies, headquartered in Geneva, Switzerland. The ISO, the world’s largest developer and publisher of International Standards, was founded in 1946 to develop a common set of standards for manufacturing, trade and communications. Today 159 countries are members. In addition to ISO 9001, more than 17,000 other ISO standards exist. ISO 9001:2008 is the current version of this standard.


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The USGA and Chevron have committed to using the game of golf to encourage students in science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) disciplines. This commitment has led to the creation of extensive golf-focused STEM teaching tools, and has resulted in charitable contributions to support golf-related programs through Eagles for Education™

At U.S. Open Championships the Chevron STEM ZONE™ is an interactive experience highlighting the science and math behind the game of golf through a variety of hands-on exhibits and experiments.

The partnership has also produced educational materials such as the Science of Golf video series and a nationally-distributed newspaper insert which are provided to teachers as tools to enhance existing curriculum in schools. These lessons teach the science behind the USGA’s equipment testing, handicapping, and agronomy efforts.

For more interactive experiences featuring golf-focused STEM lessons, visit the partnership homepage.

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Rolex has been a longtime supporter of the USGA and salutes the sportsmanship and great traditions unique to the game. This support includes the Rules of Golf where Rolex has partnered with the USGA to ensure golfers understand and appreciate the game.

As the official timekeeper of the USGA and its championships, they also provide clocks throughout host sites for spectator convenience.

For more information on Rolex and their celebration of the game, visit the Rolex and Golf homepage.

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IBM has partnered with the USGA to bring the same technology, expertise, and innovation it provides to businesses all over the world to the USGA and golf's national championship.

IBM provides the information technology to develop and host the U.S. Open’s official website,, as well as the mobile apps and scoring systems for the three U.S. Open championships. These real-time technology solutions provide an enhanced experience for fans following the championship onsite and online.

For more information on IBM and the technology that powers the U.S. Open and businesses worldwide, visit

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Lexus is committed to partnering with the USGA to deliver a best-in-class experience for the world’s best golfers by providing a fleet of courtesy luxury vehicles for all USGA Championships.

At each U.S. Open, Women’s Open and Senior Open, Lexus provides spectators with access to unique experiences ranging from the opportunity to have a picture taken with both the U.S. Open and U.S. Women’s Open trophies to autograph signings with legendary Lexus Golf Ambassadors in the Lexus Performance Drive Pavilion.

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Together, American Express and the USGA have been providing world-class service to golf fans since 2006. By creating interactive U.S. Open experiences both onsite and online, American Express enhances the USGA’s effort to make the game more accessible and enjoyable for fans.

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