By Design – Issue 51, Winter 2020

21 yards of topsoil delivered to our home. Over the next few years, I created miniature cities, roads and – yes – golf courses all around the five-foot-high pile of dirt. That led to drawings, make believe golf courses and eventually a realization that there was actually a profession called “Golf Course Architect.” I wrote to ASGCA and got a letter back with a membership application and a list of members, of which Jack Snyder happened to be in our same postal code. I called him up; that led to a long friendship, his mentoring and eventually our work together from 1985 to 2005. What was the biggest impact Arthur Jack Snyder, ASGCA, had on you? He was a man of principle, and he always gave more than he received. For example, without any contract or agreement, he would travel off to look at sites and help people who wanted to develop a course. I couldn’t understand this sometimes. After all, we should get paid anytime we’re asked to weigh in on a project. But the more I saw, the more I appreciated that Jack loved doing the work of a golf course architect, and to him it was worth the time even if he didn’t get the final assignment. He also ingrained in me that ‘Golf should be fun,’ and I’ve never forgotten that. To begin your time as ASGCA President, you produced a wonderful film, “Ahead of the Game.” What was the genesis for the film, and what do you hope to achieve by making this available to the public on YouTube and Because of COVID, many events were cancelled and that left us scrambling to figure out how to substitute all of the typical activities of our traditional Annual Meeting, including the President’s Dinner, where the incoming president is handed the gavel and says a few words. That ‘President’s Message’ evolved into the short film which has reached thousands of people, which is far more than me talking away to just my peers in the Society – I hope the message resonates and brings even more creativity to golf design. The film highlights three important future directions you see for golf course architects. What are they and may you comment on each? 1. All across the world we’ve seen creativity by golf architects to create new types of courses and practice facilities. That needs to continue, and we should ramp up the creativity because I sense that Richardson’s work has taken him around the globe in pursuit of interesting projects with unique challenges. At the Links at Las Palomas in Mexico, top left, he had 10 million cubic meters of sand to play with; Above, on site during the building of The Short Course at Mountain Shadows Resort in Arizona; Left, traveling in Asiatic Russia with Arthur Jack Snyder in 1989, while working on a major golf resort plan