124th Annual Meeting Conducted; Rod McRae Elected NJSGA President
WAYNE, N.J. - On October 17, 2023, the New Jersey State Golf Association conducted its 124th Annual Meeting held at one of the founding clubs of the NJSGA, North Jersey Country Club. The NJSGA wrapped up yet another successful year as an organization.
Concluding his term as NJSGA President, Michael McFadden led the meeting, Under McFadden's leadership, the NJSGA continued to thrive seeing an expansion in all aspects of the organization. Most notably, NJSGA conducted its Inaugural Women’s Open Championship in June. Additionally, memberships have grown by 6%. Through the membership services the NJSGA provides such as member golf days, championships, NJ Golf magazine, over 78,000 golfers are reached.
So far, the NJSGA has conducted 24 of its 25 championships, with the final championship, the 57th Mixed Pinehurst scheduled for next week. Additionally, the Association hosted seven USGA qualifiers, highlighted by a U.S. Women's Open qualifier and both a men’s and women’s U.S. Amateur qualifier.
The Inaugural Women’s Open served as a milestone for the NJSGA. 58 women, featuring 20 professionals and 38 amateurs competed in the historic event.
Most notably in tournaments, the NJSGA saw a 16.6% increase in individual player participation in 2023 compared to 2022.
Along with the update on tournaments, chairman Walter Sartorius acknowledged the commitment from the group of new and long-time volunteers who help conduct each tournament.
“We were very fortunate to have quite a few new volunteers for 2023,” Sartorius added. “Overall, we had 68 volunteers participating for at least one day and at the top end we had 16 volunteers participating between 10 to 20 days and nine volunteers gave us 25 or more days.”
Brian Hunt, chairman of the New Jersey Caddie Scholarship Foundation highlighted the current state of the foundation.
For the 2023-24 academic year, 152 caddie scholars were chosen based off their academic accolades and financial needs. They represent 41 clubs from throughout the state and will be attending 84 schools in 26 states. The partnership between the NJSGA CSF and the Evans Scholars Foundation continues to thrive
“All of this has been made possible by the support and generosity of our contributing clubs and their membership,” Hunt expressed. “This year's top contributing clubs were Baltusrol, Canoe Brook, Upper Montclair, Ridgewood and Echo Lake.”
In addition to the yearly updates of each committee, the Nominating Committee welcomed the Board of Trustees Class of 2026 in David Cronheim, Eric Houseknecht, Garfield Layne, Rod McRae and Joseph Schurtz. Outgoing board members Frank O’Brien and Jay MacNeill, who dedicated countless years to the NJSGA were honored.
O’Brien served as NJSGA President from 2014-15, a 14-year member of the NJSGA Board of Trustees, 2022 NJPGA/NJSGA Distinguished Service Award Honoree, Chairman of the NJSGA Youth Foundation and former President of Plainfield Country Club. MacNeill served on the NJSGA Board of Trustees for three decades, served as NJSGA President from 2006-07 and the 2018 Distinguished Service Award Recipient.
To conclude the meeting, Rod McRae was inducted as the newest NJSGA President for the next two years. McRae, managing partner of McRae Capital Management since 1996 has served on the NJSGA board for several years. A long-time NJSGA competitor, McRae also served as a Green Chairman at Baltusrol Golf Club.
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