Vol 24 October 2014

Mac Everett
General Chairman

Kym Hougham
Executive Director

Jan Ivey
Director of Marketing and Partner Relations

Tony Schuster
Director of Operations

Gwen Crow
Tournament Coordinator

Paula Burnett
Volunteer Coordinator

Christine Lockett
Tournament Project Manager

Kym's Corner

Kym Hougham, Executive Director

Behind the scenes

with Executive Director, Kym Hougham

I recently went out to the World Golf Championships-Accenture Match Play Championship in Arizona in an effort to see some players. At that time, we had just over 60 some days until tournament time and I wanted to get a sense of who may be coming to our tournament. I also shared with players documents describing changes that were made on the golf course at Quail Hollow Club during the summer.

It is always interesting to go to other tournaments. In this particular case, I was able to see many players for the first time in months. I heard many positive comments about our golf tournament and the city and I firmly believe we will have an excellent field again this year.

When I attend other events, I also study how they stage the tournament which includes temporary structures such as hospitality venues, tents, concession areas, the media center, directional signage, etc. I also look at other areas of the tournament such as the advertising, spectator amenities and player services. Many times I am able to pick up some ideas that we may implement here.

In fact, the PGA TOUR events—while we compete to get the best players to attend our event—share ideas through a program called “Best Practices.” It is a website we can visit and see what other events are doing and share ideas. I am proud to say, many of the ideas our staff implemented at the Wells Fargo Championship starting in 2003 and through the years are in place today at other tournaments.

It was also refreshing to see that several of our champions were playing well in Arizona. Rickie Fowler and Jim Furyk both played great and then met in the quarterfinals where Rickie won 1 up. Fowler beat Ian Poulter and Sergio Garcia earlier before beating Furyk . He then lost to eventual champion Jason Day but beat Ernie Els in the Third Place match to finish third overall.

Another one of our champions seem to be coming into form as the PGA TOUR moves to the Florida stretch. Rory McIlroy lost in a playoff at the Honda Classic and has been in the top-25 in all four tournaments he has played this year.

This time of the year is always exciting for us. Once we are under 100 days until tournament week, our meetings become more numerous and that long-range calendar we were organizing back in December is upon us. I will probably have another tournament or two to visit before our championship week is here.

In the meantime, I hope you will start making your plans to attend this year’s Wells Fargo Championship. It will be another meaningful year.