Liberty Corner, New Jersey, United States: Following an extensive search, the United States Golf Association (USGA) has appointed long-time PGA Tour player and four-time US Open competitor Jason Gore as its first Senior Director, Player Relations.
The appointment launches a comprehensive programme aimed at sharing information and strengthening engagement with players in areas of importance to the USGA. These include initiatives to grow and advance the game, research critical to the game’s health and continuing to incorporate the players’ perspective in its work to advance the sport.
Gore’s primary role will be to interact with professional and elite amateur players across the game, particularly focusing on competitors in the USGA’s Open and amateur championships.
He will lead a team of full-time staff dedicated to player relations, including Liz Fradkin, who assumed her player relations role last fall. Previously the manager of the USGA’s Curtis Cup Team and a member of the US Women’s Amateur staff, Fradkin has already been a fixture at several LPGA Tour events.
They will be joined by Robert Zalzneck and Ali Kicklighter, who will manage USGA player services with an emphasis on on-site services at the USGA’s four Open championships.
“Jason is a dynamic individual who has a great passion for the USGA and the game of golf and is widely recognised and respected by Tour players and staff, as well as industry influencers,” said John Bodenhamer, Senior Managing Director, Championships. “Filling this role has been a strategic priority for the organisation for some time and in Jason, we have someone who will bring us player insights and share our position on matters of importance to the game.”
A southern California native, Gore, his wife, Megan, and their two children, will relocate to New Jersey in the coming months.
“I have the utmost respect for the USGA and proudly tell everyone that my experience in the 1997 Walker Cup was the highlight of my golf career,” said Gore, 44, who won the PGA Tour’s 84 Lumber Classic in 2005 and played in Sunday’s final pairing of the 2005 US Open at Pinehurst. “I’m incredibly honoured to have been invited to play this role and can’t wait to get started.”
Added Bodenhamer: “While we’ve often engaged with players on a variety of projects and enjoy many long-standing relationships, this is the first time we have dedicated a team of full-time staff members to serve as year-long ambassadors for the USGA, as well as a voice for players. We’re excited to see what has been a long-term priority coming to fruition.”