What a great start to the year. I'm at the age now where both my close colleagues and college buddies, begin to get recognized for their lifetime achievements. My great honor was to be in the room on the same day that this happened to both of these people in my life. A Top Ten Day indeed!
Left my house at 3:4am to get to the area just north of NYC by 8am. On most days no problem to make it in 4, this time heavy snow and wind for all but about 50 miles of 230 mile trip-6 hrs. John Carlone, my college housemate received the Sherwood A. Moore Award and Marty Petrovic, my Cornell colleague the John Reid Award from the Metropolitan GCSA. Both of these are lifetime achievement awards and you would be hard pressed to find two guys more deserving being recognized on the same day!
My colleague Marty Petrovic and I go back a long way. I applied to work with Marty for MS in 1984 as a college senior, encouraged by my profs at University of Rhode Island. He turned me down and accepted my longtime friend and USGA Midwest Senior Agronomist Bob Vavrek. Second best thing anybody ever did for me, my first wife leaving me was the best thing (more on this another time).
Off I went to work as the Assistant Superintendent at the Greenwich Country Club in Greenwich, CT and down the street from my college buddy John Carlone, the Assistant at the Stanwich Club. Three lives intertwined and connected by our shared passion for golf, the people we meet in this business and the art and science of golf turf management.
Marty is the smartest guy I know and John a Master Craftsman. Two giants being recognized not for their size (they are both big solid guys) but for their commitment to a purpose greater than themselves. In their own ways making the world a better place for them just being here. Two guys with such great wives and kids that you can tell that they have clearly made their families a priority in their lives.
I'm also at the age where I know how important it is to recognize these people and these days as gifts, because I am also at the age where I have lost close friends and colleagues that I did not get enough chances to celebrate with. In the year ahead I wish you all a bunch of top ten days.