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Seth Waugh steps down as CEO of PGA of America

Seth Waugh steps down as CEO of PGA of America

The PGA of America announced on Wednesday that Seth Waugh has chosen to step down as CEO of the organization and shift into an advisory role. The search for a new CEO is currently underway and includes internal and external candidates. Kerry Haigh, chief championships officer for PGA of America, will serve as interim CEO.

Waugh was named CEO in 2018 after serving three years as an independent director on the PGA of America Board of Directors. His total tenure at PGA of America lasted nine years. Waugh’s current contract expires on June 30th, after which time he will serve as a senior advisor.

As a board member, he was a key player in developing the organization’s 11-year media rights agreement with CBS and ESPN. Once he became CEO, he finalized the $500 million partnership between Omni Hotels & Resorts; the City of Frisco, Texas; its economic and community development corporations; and the Frisco Independent School District which allowed the home base of PGA Frisco to be built.

Waugh also engineered the first deferred compensation retirement plan for PGA of America Members, and during his tenure the number of PGA of America Golf Professionals exceeded 30,000 for the first time. During the pandemic, Waugh and the PGA established the nearly $8 million Golf Emergency Relief Fund, as well as the Back 2 Golf initiative, which developed important safety protocols with the CDC and led to historic growth in rounds played.

Seth Waugh

Waugh’s list of accomplishments from his time with PGA of America is extensive, but the prevailing theme is a desire to grow the game and include as many people as possible.

“The goal from the start was to leave the room better than we found it and I believe that together we have done just that,” he said in a statement. “Golf has never been younger or a better reflection of the greater population. It’s never been more forward leaning, more popular or considered cooler than it is today. I have often said that golf is one of the great engines of good on earth. I am perhaps the biggest all-time beneficiary of that good and I want to thank the Membership, my colleagues, all the various Board Members, Past Presidents, our extraordinary partners, my peers at all the other golf bodies, as well as everyone who plays and loves our beautiful game for all the support and friendship during this journey.”


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