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Chatting with USGA Executive Director Mike Davis

by Jeff Skinner

I’ve spent the last few posts on the exciting week I had in Columbus at the Presidents Cup.  The media credentials, the golf, the fans, the food, the beverages, the streaker and the company all were great.  I saw plenty of golf and even got to play eighteen holes with my brother and number two son and had a pretty good week in the Buckeye State.

But there was one encounter I had that had me flying above those rain clouds that soaked Muirfield all week.  On Friday, before the deluge, I was walking past the practice green and saw USGA Executive Director Mike Davis standing there.  I had sent Davis a letter concerning the USGA’s position on issuing media credentials and received quite a lengthy response.  I also was awarded credentials to the US Amateur, The US Women’s Open and The Walker Cup.

I wanted to thank him for his letter and his consideration but hesitated at first, after all he’s Mike Davis and certainly too busy to be concerned with a blog writing golf fanatic.  But after a few moments of thought I headed over introduced myself and shook his hand. mike davis

I proceeded to tell him how we exchanged letters and how after the exchange I got the credentials but mostly I just wanted to thank him for taking the time to respond.  After he introduced me to his wife, who stood there smiling at my babbling, he said he appreciated me coming over to him and thanked me for my input (I had complained about the USGA’s strict credentialing program) and he said he thought that those who cover golf, passionately should be given credentials.

I gave him a quick rundown of my USGA Summer and praised the job he has done while at the USGA.  Davis has the reputation of being a true “golf guy” and he may be one of the few left at the USGA.  According to those in the know, Davis is a reasonable, decent man dedicated to the old school credo of the USGA:”For the Good of the Game.”

Based on my short chat with Davis and his thoughtful and thorough letter I think I can say his reputation is well deserved.  He seemed genuine and interested and if he was just being a good “politician” well, he was being a really good one.

As I was saying my goodbyes, I told him I would be hounding him again next spring when I apply for media credentials to the US Open.  He paused and said “good, copy me on that.”  Wow, the Executive Director of the USGA wants me to copy him.  So I got that going for me.

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