Former PGA of America CEO Steranka headlines fifth G4 Summit, hosted by The Broadmoor, site of U.S. Senior Open
by Gary Baines
Next week, the G4 Summit — an annual event which brings together many of the industry leaders in Colorado golf for a day of meetings, panel discussions and several presentations by notable speakers — will be held for the fifth time.
And if No. 5 is anything like Nos. 1 through 4, something headline-worthy will occur.
This time around, the G4 will be conducted at The Broadmoor Resort in Colorado Springs for the third time, returning Feb. 28 after being hosted by the Omni Interlocken Hotel in Broomfield last winter.
It’ll be the first of many notable large-scale golf events set for The Broadmoor in 2018, the year the resort celebrates the 100th anniversary of its founding. Of course, things there will center around the 2018 U.S. Senior Open, which will pay a visit June 28-July 1.
The G4 brings together the organizations that make up the Colorado Golf Alliance — the CGA, Colorado PGA, the Rocky Mountain Chapter of the Golf Course Superintendents Association of America, and the Mile High Chapter of the Club Managers Association of America. And many others in the Colorado golf community likewise will be on hand.
Each year, the G4 features discussions of various pressing issues golf faces, tries to be more effective growing the game, shares best practices and emphasizes collaboration among industry leaders.
Among the G4 highlights in previous years:
— Pete Bevacqua, the CEO of the PGA of America, was the headline speaker in 2015, also at The Broadmoor. The former USGA executive also has served as the chairman of the World Golf Foundation board of directors.
— Also in 2015, Denver resident and former USGA president Will Nicholson Jr., announced that Jack Nicklaus had agreed to be a headliner at the Colorado Century of Golf Gala later that year at The Broadmoor.
— In 2016, the name and logo for the then-new Junior Golf Alliance of Colorado were unveiled at the G4 Summit. The JGAC, founded by the CGA and Colorado PGA, has proven a big success since being launched.
— Also in 2016, the high-powered speaker lineup included Dottie Pepper, winner of 17 LPGA Tour events and now a golf analyst on CBS, and Rhett Evans, CEO of Golf Course Superintendents Association of America.
Other speakers over the years have included high-level leaders in the USGA and the military.
The lineup for the Feb. 28 G4 will have similar firepower. It includes:
— Joe Steranka, a former CEO of the PGA of America (2005-12) and now chief global strategist for Steranka Sports + Strategy, is tentatively scheduled to speak on “Why Digital Media is at the Center of Golf’s Future.” Steranka was a journalism major at West Virginia University.
Steranka has previously spoken in Colorado at the 2010 CGA Season Tee-Off Luncheon, a predecessor of sorts to the G4 Summit.
— Dr. Michael Cooper, chairman of the Golf 20/20 Diversity Task Force, will address the subject of diversity in golf. Last week, Cooper appeared on the Golf Channel’s “Morning Drive” program.
Also scheduled to speak are Frank Vain, president of McMahon Group, on club industry trends; and Ross Iverson, co-founder and executive director of the Vail Centre, on leadership and staff development.
All four speakers also will take part in an industry discussion panel to conclude the G4 Summit on Feb. 28.
Likewise on the tentative agenda are a JGAC update on the alliance’s recent addition of the Youth on Course initiative (READ MORE); a state legislature briefing from Jennifer Cassell, a lobbyist for the Colorado Golf Alliance; and a few minutes with Colorado Golf Hall of Fame leadership. The executive committees for the allied associations will start the day with a by-invitation-only breakfast meeting.
The G4 Summit has attracted 125 to 300 attendees per year, with about 180 coming in 2017. It was held at Inverness in 2014, The Broadmoor in 2015 and ’16, and The Omni last year.
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