A rewarding golf career: Susie’s worldwide adventure – Australian PGA

As a former player, both amateur and professional, and now working in the profession, he finds it very rewarding to be a part of the industry every day.

A trip that began casually playing with her parents, Susie’s knack for the sport was evident. He initially excelled by being selected for the Division One Pennant at South Australia’s Kooyonga Golf Club, gaining state team representation and then a stint at the Australian Institute of Sport after leaving school.

“For me, everything was a step as I progressed with golf,” he recalls. “I would do well and the opportunities would open up for me.”

Significantly, the strength of Susie’s performances earned her a full scholarship to UCLA in America, where she was able to combine her passion for elite golf with her career interest in professional communications.

“That was a great thing for me to do, of course it was overwhelming to begin with, but it was fabulous.

“In that environment, you always have someone to practice, compete and learn with.”

During her time abroad, Susie’s team won the National Championship. The personal highlight inspired his next move, as he took on the challenge of playing golf professionally.

There were stints in China and throughout Asia, as well as playing on the Australian women’s circuit, before Susie earned a full ticket to play the Japan Tour in 2010.

Although an injury meant it would only be for one season, Susie’s time as a Professional opened a series of doors for her when she returned to Australia, looking to maintain her connection to golf.

“I kind of fell into a role at Kooyonga, helping out with the junior programs, which started my career in golf as a staff member rather than a player.

“A lot of what I was doing was helping the PGA professionals at the club and that started the thought process for me that I really wanted some formal qualifications.”

After playing PGA Tour Articulation enough to qualify for PGA Lifetime Membership, Susie completed her course in 2016 and couldn’t be happier with her decision.

“I would do it again in a heartbeat – I would recommend it to anyone who has the chance.

“Now as a PGA Professional, it’s very rewarding to be in a position to help people with golf and pass on knowledge.”

Currently the Golf and Membership Manager at Kooyonga, Susie is responsible for creating a warm and welcoming atmosphere; making sure the golf club is somewhere people can feel real joy.

“From the club’s point of view, Camaraderie can give people a real purpose and something they can enjoy,” he explained. “Therefore, I like to help create a club atmosphere where people feel protected and safe.

“In golf, we’re lucky because we’re in a profession to help people.”

Eager to get back into coaching and pass on her technical knowledge to the next generation of the game, Susie is excited every day to see the impact she and all other PGA professionals can have.

Overall, it is reinforced by the continued growth and development of the women’s game, something Susie describes as “an instrumental change” during her time in the industry.

“Once when I was younger, you might have been a bit scared to walk around the club, over the years we’ve seen golf become a lot more open,” he explained.

“Now we have special measures for women and that is really important.

“It’s great to see golf helping more women and girls get into golf and play the game. It’s much more welcoming than ever.”

With a passion to help give all golfers the skills and resources to enjoy the sport and around the club, Susie is excited about the possibilities in the sport.

“My ultimate goal is to continue to help everyone enjoy the game.

“I’m really looking forward to what’s possible.”

For more information on Women’s and Girls’ Month, click HERE

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