New Zealand Golf has realigned the organisation's structure to better fit with its 2020 to 2025 Strategic Plan and better address the opportunities for golf following the COVID-19 pandemic. 

New Zealand Golf’s five-year Strategic Plan entitled ‘Enriching Lives Through Golf’ has key strategies of ‘Growing the Profile of Golf’, ‘Increasing Participation’, and ‘Supporting Clubs and Facilities’. To further align the business to these strategies, four new roles have been created in place of three previous roles.

The new positions appointed are National Club Support Manager, Club Marketing Support Officer, Golf Workforce Development Manager, and Performance Golf Support Officer.

New Zealand Golf Chief Executive Dean Murphy says it’s an exciting time for the business.

“Our organisation is focused on how we can best play our special leadership role for golf. Assessing the best future strategy and the best way to respond to the COVID-19 pandemic has necessitated some changes to our structure. On one hand this has led to three roles concluding and three great people leaving our business. These people leave New Zealand Golf with their integrity and mana completely intact and they’ll always be part of the New Zealand Golf story. On the other hand, we now have an opportunity to bring some new people and new energy into the business. I’m excited to see the contributions they will make over the coming years.”

The New Zealand Golf whanau welcome Rob Fergusson who has come onboard as the National Club Support Manager.

Rob understands through his experience the ‘club’ world and the servant leadership mindset of providing a great culture, services and sustainable future for its members and that the value of the club is in its members. Rob has experience in working on and with Boards and committees of clubs a local, regional or national and in working with local, metropolitan or regional councils and associated utilities in how it applies at a club level.

Rob’s key role is to provide management and operational support to golf clubs, enabling them to thrive and prosper. The role will be charged with providing practical and actionable support and advisory services to golf clubs, either directly or through the regional New Zealand Golf and District Association network that helps address the challenges facing golf in the future.

Mike Hadnett also joins the team as the Club Marketing Support Officer.

Mike will balance this new role while continuing to play his role as Marketing Manager for the New Zealand Open. He has a wealth of club and sport marketing experience having worked at the Northern Football Federation and on the FIFA U-20 World Cup in 2015. Mike brings many skills with him including managing digital channels, communications, social media, media relations, content creation, event management, and internal IT support.

Mike’s key role is to work with golf clubs on their club member and visitor marketing efforts so that customer experiences and participation levels are enhanced. A significant early priority is the domestic and trans-Tasman visitor market plus working with all clubs on their imagery, pricing, and digital platforms. Additional focus areas will include product offerings, the use of technology, and the golfer experience.

Joining the team as the Golf Workforce Development Manager is Stephen Gee.

Stephen has expertise in strategy and personal development; running several high-level facilitation workshops, education programmes and research projects with boards and project groups across a range of New Zealand sports organisations.

Working in partnership with the Golf Managers Association of New Zealand, the purpose of the role is to upweight the level of ongoing workforce development, education and training across the golf sector. Whether it be for club managers, administrators, governance personnel, PGA professionals or any others working at the sector coal face, New Zealand Golf has a desire to provide learning and development opportunities that enhance workforce capability and in turn help drive New Zealand Golf’s strategic outcomes.

Finally, Grace Rokela transitions into the Performance Golf Support Officer role after being the Marketing & Design Executive since coming onboard with New Zealand Golf in May 2019.

Although Grace is not a new member of the New Zealand Golf team, she will bring an exciting level of professionalism and innovation to the High Performance and Championships team.

She has played the game at a high level herself, playing college golf in America after earning a scholarship to The Savannah College of Art and Design. One of Grace’s many golfing achievements came at the Autex Muriwai Open this year where she made a hole in one on the par 3 eighth.

She not only has a passion for the game of golf, she also has a passion to change it and make it a game for everyone.

Grace’s role is to provide critical support and coordination services as we set about implementing a wide range of initiatives and programmes that ultimately inspire New Zealanders to participate in golf.

This is an exciting time for New Zealand Golf as the business continues to enrich lives through golf. The new roles will further align the business to the New Zealand Golf Strategic Plan as we tackle the challenges facing the sector following COVID-19.



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