Taking your passion to Congress
Keswick Golf Course Superintendent Takes Passion ..
He’s the golf course superintendent at the Keswick Club just outside Charlottesville.
But Peter McDonough does more than just turn on sprinklers and fertilize the grass.
McDonough said, “You have to be an agronomist, a horticulturist, an ecologist. My job is science and art. I think that’s the best way, as a golf course superintendent, we kind of frame ourselves, our responsibility to land management, responsibility of having a quality-conditioned golf course for the golfer, and then how are we marrying both at the same time.”
McDonough is proactive in helping the environment through golf course management, and he’s taking his passion to Congress to discuss golf course environmental issues affecting the United States.
McDonough, along with industry leaders including the PGA Tour’s Commissioner and the CEO of the PGA of America, are traveling to the nation’s capital to meet with members of Congress on National Golf Day, which is Wednesday.
McDonough has worked a lot in Richmond with the House of Delegates and Senate at the state level, helping design and write legislation that’s been signed into law, addressing water conservation and fertilization, which in turn helps the Chesapeake Bay restoration project.
McDonough said, “I love what I do. That’s the driving factor. I also recognize that if you don’t set yourself out front to promote the game, someone else is going to do it for us, whether the message is good or negative. My belief is that you really need to stand out front and hold your head high, because this is something really fun that we do. I enjoy it thoroughly, and it’s something you hope to hand off to everyone else down the line.”
McDonough received an Excellence in Government Relations award from the Golf Course Superintendents Association of America (GCSAA) in 2008, and now he’s bringing his ideas and solutions to Washington, D.C.
McDonough said, “You’re able to share golf’s good story. Everybody is understanding of the work of the First Tee here in Charlottesville, all the positives it brings with life’s lessons, and the big part is a game that can be played for a lifetime. I think the part of where the environment fits into the picture, and how you’re communicating that message, is something that people in my profession are excited to talk about, so we have a privilege to do so, and that’s why I find this a great opportunity.”
McDonough is a 21-year member of the GCSAA.