Mike Davis, the current CEO of the USGA, will leave the organization by the end of 2021 to pursue a lifelong passion for golf course design and construction. In the next step of his professional journey, Davis, 55, will team with accomplished golf course designer Tom Fazio II in a new business venture, where together they have formed Fazio & Davis Golf Design.
Davis, who joined the USGA in 1990, became the Association’s seventh executive director in 2011 and its first Chief Executive Officer in 2016. In the CEO role, Davis is responsible for managing all aspects of the association’s day-to-day operations, including its core functions, essential programs and human and financial resources. He serves as a member of several golf-related boards, including the International Golf Federation, World Golf Foundation, World Golf Hall of Fame and Official World Golf Rankings.
“Leading the USGA has been such an honor, and I’m grateful for the many wonderful years I have had with this great organization,” said Davis. “While I am excited for my next chapter, my work here is not done, and I look forward to furthering our mission to better the game over the next 15 months.”
Until his departure, Davis will continue to focus on leading the organization through the impacts of COVID-19, advancing the USGA’s commitment to create Golf House Pinehurst; driving USGA strategy (including, importantly, the outcomes of the Distance Insights project); and on-boarding and supporting his successor to ensure a smooth transition for the next CEO.
"Mike has been a transformational leader in golf and his actions to move the USGA forward have been numerous and decisive," said USGA President Stu Francis. "These accomplishments include leading global rules modernization, the new World Handicap System, the ongoing Distance Insights project and the creation of the new USGA Foundation. In addition, Mike’s vision helped create four new USGA championships, while at the same time ensuring a renowned lineup of golf courses for all of the USGA’s championships. He has also been a strong advocate for the selection of public golf courses as U.S. Open sites.”
“During his tenure as CEO, Mike has assembled a strong, experienced leadership team, and worked collaboratively with our board to modernize and streamline the internal governance structures of the USGA, which created the space for the management team to lead the way and the Executive Committee to function primarily as a strategic board.”
The USGA Executive Committee will soon initiate a search for the next CEO, with the goal of having a candidate in place prior to the 2021 U.S. Open in June. Davis will support the onboarding of the new CEO over the subsequent months with the intent of formally departing the organization by the end of 2021.