Michael Roeder is the general manager at one of Rochester’s younger courses, Ravenwood golf course in Victor, NY. He is a PGA Professional with enhanced responsibilities, and offers an inside look at the details of those daily tasks, in this week’s PGA Professional interview series installment.
1. Tell us your name and how you got interested/involved in golf as a youth.
Mike Roeder – After taking a summer school program that included mini golf and winning a Big trophy I was hooked from that moment on.
2. Tell us a bit about your competitive golf experience in your younger days.
I played College Golf for St. Cloud State University in College – Was a participant in the Minnesota State High School Championships
3. What epiphany did you have that led you to the PGA of America and a club professional position?
I was managing a Golf facility in Minnesota when a friend who was involved in the PGA was working in Myrtle Beach told me that I should take my career to the next level and I did perusing Membership in the PGA.
4. Give us bit of history on the clubs you have represented as an assistant or head professional.
I was an assistant at Deer Track Golf club (a 36 hole Resort in myrtle Beach) / Than on to The “legend” at Schuss Mountain Resort in Northern Michigan / Than two winters in West Palm Beach Florida at the Presidents CC & Boynton Beach CC / Than on to 3 Years as an Assistant at Belmont CC in Perrysburg, OH – From there I got My First Job as a Head Professional at the Maumee Bay Resort on Lake Erie in Maumee Ohio.
5. Run down the responsibilities of a club professional, including the tasks that might not be apparent to members and guests.
As a General Manager I oversee the entire operation. Food & beverage and Maintenance where I allow my managers to make the major decisions. I oversee the Golf Operation and the main responsibilities people do not see is the administration with memberships, buying merchandise, Tournament planning and event planning, billing and in our case at Ravenwood we also run an additional business of Stay & Play Golf packages – about 40 groups that account for 700 room nights and many golf rounds
6. As a teaching professional, what are the most important tenets of your teaching philosophy?
As a GM I have given the responsibility of teaching to our teaching staff of 5
7. Give us an idea of your recent competitive history. Also, what do you work on to stay sharp?
As many of us Golf Professional’s we don’t get a chance to play much golf. I most recently had a very low round of 65 playing a match with a group of members. I have competed in the local Western NY PGA events and have had some success in winning a little bit of money. Hit some balls when I can and most importantly work on your short game!
8. In competition, on what do you focus to achieve your greatest success? We know that golf and competitive golf are dissimilar, so what does a professional rely on (mentally, emotionally, spiritually, physically) to compete his best?
Just focus and keep a good positive thought before each shot and generally you can use your God given talent to play a respectable round. I also keep fit and eat right which helps me be prepared at any given time.
9. What question haven’t we asked, that you wish we would? Ask it and answer it, please.
Our business is about Growing the game of golf and giving people a Great Golf experience. We as golf professionals need to continue to be creative in finding ways to get golfers to stay with the game, find new players and give those who visit our facilities a great experience in order to get them to return.