GCSAA establish leadership academy for women
A new Women’s Leadership Academy has been established by the Golf Course Superintendents Association of America (GCSAA).
The program is the first of its kind focused on developing female leaders within the turfgrass industry and will provide opportunities for education, mentoring and networking.
The Women’s Leadership Academy (WLA) will host events featuring industry experts to teach ‘inner skills,’ including self-awareness, communication, understanding and inspiring others.
Suzy Whaley, PGA Master Professional and the first woman to serve as president of the PGA of America, has been confirmed as the headline speaker for the inaugural event at GCSAA headquarters in Lawrence, Kansas (November 7-9).
Rhett Evans, Chief Executive Officer of the GCSAA, said: “This event gives us the opportunity to inspire a small, yet growing, and passionate group in our industry to become impactful leaders.
“Their leadership will not only help those already in the turfgrass industry but attract more women to work in turf-related fields.”
Women make up less than two per cent of the GCSAA’s 18,500-strong worldwide membership, including 61 women working in Class A or B Superintendent roles.*
The leadership academy was founded following feedback from the 2022 GCSAA Women’s Task group, including members of ‘Women in Turf,’ an all-female turf crew invited to volunteer at the past three US Women’s Opens.
The GCSAA says it hopes the academy will break down barriers to female entry into the turfgrass profession and attract more women to consider turf careers.
Building on the success and increased visibility of women in turf, the academy aims to deliver opportunities for women to establish meaningful networks and hold discussions on wellness, talent optimization, human resources and best practice working.
The event is supported by benefactors from across the turf industry and is free to attend for those selected for the program.
Applications to attend are now available at gcsaa.org/wla and the deadline for submission is Monday August 7, 2023.
*GCSAA figures as of 2022