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Saratoga Golf & Polo Club

Residence Inn By Marriott - Saratoga SpringsRon Ireland is the recent winner of the Bill Strausbaugh award. He is the manager of the Saratoga Golf & Polo Club and I was able to ask him a few questions about the award, the course, and his golf game.

Curtis Putney | May 2012

1. What was your initial reaction when you heard you received the Bill Strausbaugh Award?

I was very excited. It is an honor to get a award that one of your peers has nominated you for and one that is then voted on by another group of peers.

2. Have you been awarded with any other prestigious awards in the past?

The Club that I managed in Maryland was nominated and became one of the finalists for Small Business of the Year in Prince Georges County. Also while at that Club, I was named Manager of the Year for Meadowbrook Management. This was the company that owned the Club and was one of 65 clubs that they owned. In addition to that I also won the Customer Service award during another year.

3. How long have you been managing the Saratoga Golf & Polo Club?

It will be five years in July.

4. What is your favorite golf club in your bag?

My hybrid is the favorite club in the bag. I feel like I can hit it from anywhere.

5. How often do you get to play golf?

I come in around 6am a couple of times a week to play before work and maybe one other time.

6. What is the toughest course you have ever played?

That would have to be Muirfield Golf Club in Ohio. It requires you to think on every shot.

7. What is your five year plan for Saratoga Golf and Polo Club?

With the way the golf industry is now, it is very difficult to plan five years ahead. We are about to complete a major renovation project here at the Club. We have installed a double row irrigation system, renovated a large portion of the club house, renovated the pool bath house and we are going to resurface the parking lot in a couple of weeks. Our goal is to be the best Club in the Capital District and we will develop programming and facilities for our members that will help us achieve that goal.

8. Have you ever made a hole-in-one?

I have been fortunate enough to have 3 hole in ones.

9. What does winning the Bill Strausbaugh Award mean to you?

It is a real honor. I feel that any time you are given an award by your peers it is special. This is award is given to a PGA Member that works with other PGA Professionals to improve their job prospects and mentor them and also is involved in the community. I learn so much from doing this that I feel I get more than I give.

10. What was your lowest score after 18 holes and where?

I shot a 65 at Park Hills Country Club in Altoona PA. I was the head golf professional there for 10 years.