THE FUTURE OF the PGA of America looks a lot like Maggie Hartman. A 24-year-old junior golf leader for the ExperienceGolf instruction program at CommonGround Golf Course in Aurora, Hartman was recently selected as one of 15 golf professionals to participate in PGA LEAD, a four-year-old strategic initiative “designed to establish a deep bench of diverse PGA Members who are prepared to ascend through the volunteer leadership ranks of the Association at the Chapter, Section and National levels.”
Hartman, who graduated three years ago from the PGA Golf Management Program at the University of Colorado Colorado Springs, became a full PGA member in March 2017 with a certification in player development. She applied to PGA LEAD while serving as director of The First Tee of Pikes Peak, where she had volunteered throughout college.
Involvement in The First Tee’s Colorado Springs chapter came naturally to the self-described “product of The First Tee of Denver.” When she was six or seven, her parents got her involved with The First Tee, and she eventually became a mentor. She played golf for East High School and also worked at City Park, where, she jokes, “hitting balls and driving the picker was good therapy.”
Hartman cites as her inspirations Colorado PGA Head Professionals Tom Woodard, Todd Marley and Keith Soriano, all of whom encouraged her to pursue a career as a golf professional and to give back to the game. She says she “loves the inclusive culture of CommonGround,” and working with such programs as PGA HOPE (Helping Our Patriots Everywhere), Special Olympics and instruction for ESL students and individuals from diverse backgrounds.
“It’s a priority for me as a golf professional for kids and the community to see people like themselves in these leadership positions,” she says, citing the example set by PGA President Suzy Whaley as “priceless” to her.
The two-year PGA LEAD program will help Hartman and her fellow professionals “learn the ropes” to becoming those kinds of leaders. Since the program’s inception four years ago, six PGA LEAD alumni have already ascended into board leadership positions within their PGA Sections, including three currently serving as Section Vice Presidents. Another 15 PGA LEAD alumni serve on PGA of America National Committees. coloradopga.com
This article was also featured in the April 2020 issue of Colorado AvidGolfer.
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