Irrigation performance guarantee

The irrigation brain trust broke the mold with a performance guarantee at Paradise Valley Country Club, AZ
(This article is from The USGA Green Section Record vol. 48, no. 24)
by Rob Collins, Brent Harvey, Jim Wright, Dr. Paul Brown

Several years ago, we exceeded our state water allocation and were facing possible fines. We set a goal to reduce water use by a robust 76 acre-feet (AF), a target that we felt was achievable if irrigation performance was substantially improved. However, green committee members at Paradise Valley Country Club (PVCC) wanted a guaranteed performance level, but such a guarantee had never been considered before among industry professionals. Irrigation designers, manufacturers, and researchers were challenged to forgo industry standards and guarantee an elevated level of efficiency.

The solution seemed simple enough; reduce irrigated turf, improve efficiency, and meet the water allotment. In 2006, the facility used 620 AF of water on 122 acres of turf, or 5.1 acre-feet/acre (AF/A). This total exceeded the water allotment by about 40 AF. As we began to evaluate potential solutions, more questions were raised. For example, how does irrigation efficiency affect water use? If we improve the efficiency by 10, 15 or even 20%, how much water is saved? How much turf can we remove without negatively impacting the design and character of the course? These were questions we were unable to answer ourselves, so we sought professional advice from Brent Harvey, Harvey Mills Irrigation Design; Jim Wright, Toro Irrigation; and Dr. Paul Brown, University of Arizona. See how this project turned out.


USGA announces 2011 executive committee nominations

James B. Hyler, Jr. of Raleigh, N.C., has been nominated to serve a second one-year term as president of the United States Golf Association by the USGA Nominating Committee. The election of officers and the 15-member USGA Executive Committee will take place Feb. 5, 2011, at the USGA’s Annual Meeting in Phoenix.
As president, Hyler will continue to lead the Association’s professional staff and nearly 1,400 volunteers who serve on more than 30 committees.
“Having the opportunity to serve as president of the USGA is an incredible honor and privilege, particularly for someone who loves and respects the game as much as I do,” said Hyler. “I have had a great experience working with the USGA staff, our many volunteers and the Executive Committee in 2010, and I’m looking forward to 2011.”
Hyler is in his seventh year as a member of the USGA Executive Committee, a term that includes three years as a USGA vice president.
A retired banking executive, Hyler is a 1970 graduate of Virginia Tech. He served as chairman of the President’s Council for the 1999 and 2005 U.S. Open Championships at the Pinehurst (N.C.) Resort and was instrumental in launching a new chapter of The First Tee in Raleigh.
In addition to his golf-related activities, Hyler is involved in a range of business and civic organizations. He is a member of the boards of directors of several companies, including Progress Energy, an investor-owned utility, and also works in a consulting capacity with a private company.
Hyler is a past chairman and continues to serve on the boards of trustees of Rex Healthcare and the University of North Carolina Healthcare System. He has served on numerous other boards and was chairman of the Greater Raleigh Chamber of Commerce, the Raleigh-Durham Airport Authority and the North Carolina Chamber. He is past chairman of two state government fiscal reform committees, positions he held at the request of the governor of North Carolina.
Four other current members of the Executive Committee have also been nominated to serve as officers. They are: Glen D. Nager of Washington, D.C., and Thomas J. O’Toole, Jr. of St. Louis, Mo., as vice presidents; Geoffrey Y. Yang of Menlo Park, Calif., as secretary; and Steven R. Smyers of Lakeland, Fla., as treasurer.  
The other seven current members of the Executive Committee nominated to continue their service are: Christie L. Austin of Cherry Hills Village, Colo.; Daniel B. Burton of Lititz, Pa.; William L. Katz of Essex Fells, N.J.; Brigid Shanley Lamb of Mendham, N.J.; Christopher A. Liedel of Vienna, Va.; Gene McClure of Atlanta, Ga.; and James B. Williams of Orinda, Calif. 
There are three newly nominated candidates for the Executive Committee for 2011: William W. Gist IV of Omaha, Neb.; Edward G. Michaels III of Atlanta, Ga.; and Diana M. Murphy of St. Simons Island, Ga. 
Gist is a dentist who received his undergraduate degree from the University of Nebraska and his DDS from the University of Nebraska College of Dentistry. He was a member of the Nebraska Golf Association’s Board of Directors from 1996 to 2006 and served as its president from 2002 to 2004. He has served on the U.S. Junior Amateur Championship Committee since 2001 and has served as a Rules official at various USGA championships, including the U.S. Senior Open, and collegiate events such as the Big 12 Championship and the NCAA Men’s Regional Championship. He won the Nebraska Mid-Amateur Championship in 2000 and is an eight-time club champion.  
Michaels, who earned his bachelor’s degree from the University of North Carolina and his MBA from Harvard Business School, worked for McKinsey & Company in a variety of roles from 1969 to 2001 after serving as a supply corps officer in the United States Navy. Michaels served as chairman of the board of trustees for The McCallie School from 2005 to 2008 and is the founder and current chairman of the Atlanta Families’ Awards for Excellence in Education. Michaels, a former board member at Wade Hampton Golf Club, serves as chairman for the United States Seniors’ Golf Association’s Desert Invitational Tournament. He is the current senior club champion at The Vintage Club in Indian Wells, Calif.  
Murphy is managing director for Rocksolid Holdings LLC, a private equity firm. Murphy, who received her bachelor’s degree in journalism from West Virginia University and an advanced executive business degree from Northwestern University, was formerly managing director of Chartwell Capital Management Company as well as senior vice president of advertising and marketing for the Baltimore Sun Company. She currently serves on numerous public and private boards of directors, including: Georgia Research Alliance Venture Capital Fund, Abeome Corporation, Coastal Bank of Georgia, College of Coastal Georgia, the Boys and Girls Clubs of Southeast Georgia and Landstar System, Inc. She served on the USGA Membership Committee from 1996 to 2008.  
Mark E. Newell of McLean, Va.,has been nominated to serve as the Association’s general counsel for the first time, replacing Joseph W. Anthony of Minneapolis, Minn. Newell is vice chairman and chief operating partner of Latham & Watkins LLP, which he joined in 1983. He has been a member of the firm’s Executive Committee since 1999 and served as the managing partner of the Washington, D.C., office from 1993 to 2000. Newell served as a law clerk to U.S. Supreme Court Justice Lewis F. Powell, Jr. from 1982 to 1983. Newell, who earned his Juris Doctor from Harvard Law School in 1981, served as editor and treasurer of the Harvard Law Review. He received his undergraduate degree from Albion College and earned his Master in Public Policy from the John F. Kennedy School of Government at Harvard.
Three current members of the Executive Committee will retire at the 2011 Annual Meeting: Pat Kaufman of Fort Washington, Md.; John Y. Kim of New York, N.Y.; and Cameron Jay Rains of San Diego, Calif. 


Support The First Tee

To raise dollars for the Cloud 9 Scholarship, The First Tee of Phoenix will be selling raffle tickets at $5 each or 3 for $10. Prizes include a new set of clubs, golf and lessons, gift cards, a spa day, a vacation and exclusive Waste Management Phoenix Open tickets. Winners will be announced in December. The goal of the raffle is to raise $2,000 this year. For more information or to purchase raffle ticket(s) visit You can also contact Hugh Smith, executive director of The First Tee of Phoenix at 602-305-7655. Thank you in advance for your support of the Cloud 9 Scholarship and The First Tee of Phoenix. Because of the generosity of people like you, The First Tee is able to further its mission. The First Tee of Phoenix impacts more than 65,000 Arizona youth each year. This is done through regular programming at its South Mountain, Desert Mirage, Papago, Falcon Dunes and Longbow facilities, as well as special programs with allied organizations like Boys & Girls Clubs, YMCA, Boy Scouts, Girl Scouts and the LPGA. Additionally, The First Tee curriculum is taught in more than 120 schools in the Kyrene, Pendergast, Phoenix, Chandler and Mesa school districts through the national school program.


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