Experienced golf course architect Howard Swan was unanimously re-elected chairman of the Golf Consultants Association (GCA) at its recent annual general meeting.
The senior consultant at the family owned Swan Golf Designs, Swan - GCA chairman since 2013 - will lead the association for a further two years. He will be aided by an executive which continues to comprise business advisor John Ashworth, of John Ashworth Associates, Jon Barker of the Adderley Barker clubhouse design consultancy, Luis Desouza, founder and CEO of the NFS Technology Group, and marketer Andy Barwell, of golf marketing and PR specialist the Azalea Group.
The association has doubled in size during the last three years and, at the meeting, members were unanimously positive and optimistic for future progress. They expressed the view that the increasingly wide range of disciplines within the membership will continue to gain more consultancy opportunities in the marketplace, both at home and abroad.
They believed the revamped GCA website, launched in April 2014, had proved very successful in making global golf business more aware of the breadth of the specialist services members can provide and in gaining many more enquiries for those services.
Swan said: "It has been a great privilege for me to chair the association for the last two years and I am delighted to have the chance to do so for another two. It is very pleasing to see that we have so many new members, specialising in so many different sectors of the international golf business, and I can see us consolidating that position and expanding upon it during the next couple of years.
"I am very fortunate to have such an excellent team supporting my efforts, and we shall, collectively, be driving forward the association to reach, what I hope will be, an unrivalled position in the future. I'm sure the membership will continue to expand significantly, increasing the number of disciplines and specialties within the membership, so the GCA can offer an even more meaningful consultancy service to potential clients."
Recent new recruits to the association include Jackie Spurr, an environmental consultant specialising in importation golf projects; Greg Place, a hotel specialist with vast experience from his years with the golf sector of the Marriott group; Ireland-based Rod Park, who specialises in golf club operation and management consultancy; and Ian Savage, also from Ireland, who brings with him vast experience in dealing with developmental and financial project matters within both the public and private sectors.
"All of our new recruits give GCA consultants even greater chance of networking together in future projects," added Swan. "And that was the association's raison d'etre when it was first conceived."
Established in 1999, the GCA has a successful record in providing assistance to the global golf community across a broad spectrum of services. It aims to assist golf course developers and those looking to build successful golf businesses by offering expert and impartial advice. It is an umbrella organisation for a number of golf business experts, each of whom has a track record in delivering outstanding value for golf clients around the globe.
GCA members can offer specialist skills in any number of aspects of golf operations, including buying, selling and financing golf developments; golf marketing and media relations; designing and building golf courses and driving ranges; environmental golf development; golf market research; and much more.