How does social responsibility fit into the PGA of America’s mission?
- Levy: At the PGA, we are always seeking opportunities to further our mission to grow the game and serve our members. Social responsibility ties into this mission. Golf has many benefits—from the physical exercise and mental focus gained from playing the game to the relationships developed on the course—and it is our stated goal to make these benefits readily available to individuals from all backgrounds. And by supporting our members, we provide them with the opportunity to make a career out of the game they love, as well as help them to better inspire new players at their clubs. We have the unique ability to influence millions of lives—so we are making sure our PGA Professionals have state-of-the art training, skills and the expertise necessary to promote the benefits of golf at clubs and courses around the world.
- Bevacqua: The PGA of America has actively been supporting socially responsible activities for many years. Social responsibility is critical to our mission of growing the game. As one of the world’s largest sports organizations, we recognize that we have a unique ability to include new audiences in the game who otherwise would have not had the opportunity—due to financial, physical ability or other barriers. Through PGA REACH, our charitable organization, we have implemented innovative programs to bring new faces into the game of golf, whether by making the game more exciting and accessible for young players or offering access to golf equipment that is affordable for lower-income players. That’s why we are excited to share our first Social Responsibility Report, which highlights the important and exciting work that the PGA is doing globally to grow the game, while making a positive and responsible impact on the environment and our communities.
How is the PGA of America bringing energy to the game?
- Levy: From developing cutting-edge education programs for PGA Professionals to growing the PGA Jr. League, we’re finding ways to bring the excitement of golf to even more audiences. We’ve more than quadrupled the number of players participating in the league over the past four years. This success shows that our efforts to make the game more accessible to young players is paying off, and that we’re successfully developing the next generation of golfers.
- Bevacqua: Our PGA Professionals are at the forefront of bringing energy to the game. They are at their facilities every day, teaching, coaching and inspiring the players they come in contact with. Their enthusiasm is what keeps players coming back to play. We are continuously providing them with new and exciting education opportunities so that they can further develop their careers in golf and better serve their local facilities and communities.
What are some accomplishments at the PGA of America that you are most excited about?
- Levy: PGA HOPE (Helping Our Patriots Everywhere), the flagship military program of PGA REACH, has been a tremendous success since it started in 2014. This program, which has already impacted the lives of over 3,500 Veterans, offers disabled Veterans the opportunity to rehabilitate, learn new skills and develop lifelong friendships through the game of golf. We’re hoping to expand the program in the coming years to impact the lives of thousands more Veterans.
- Bevacqua: We’re excited for our partnership with Constellation. Many golf facilities are already taking steps to conserve energy, and this partnership will help them discover even more opportunities for energy savings and responsible energy use. Already, some clubs are taking advantage of this partnership to find ways to make their facilities more energy efficient, with both financial and environmental benefits. We’ve also made a commitment to purchase renewable energy certificates (RECs) for all of our Championships to reduce the carbon footprint of these large-scale, high-profile events. We’re looking forward to continuing this partnership for years to come.
We invite you to explore our Social Responsibility Report to find out more about the PGA of America and how we are working to bring energy to the game around the world.
Paul Levy – President, PGA of America
Paul Levy was elected as PGA President in 2016, after serving two-year terms as both PGA Vice President and PGA Secretary. He was President of Club Operations and Development for Sunrise Company, where he served for 18 years; and was also formerly the CEO and GM at Toscana Country Club in Indian Wells, California. He has received numerous accolades throughout his career, including as a past recipient of the Southern Texas PGA Golf Professional of the Year Award; a three-time Section PGA Junior Golf Leader recipient; a Section Bill Strausbaugh Award winner; and a Section Merchandiser of the Year for Public Facilities honoree.
Peter Bevacqua – Chief Executive Officer, PGA of America
Pete Bevacqua has served as the CEO of the PGA of America since 2012, leading the business decisions of the PGA and serving the Association’s nearly 29,000 PGA Professionals. He also serves as Chairperson of the International Golf Federation, a group that was instrumental in golf’s return to the Olympics. Bevacqua received the 2016 March of Dimes Sports Leadership Award.