“It means a lot to me to work for an organization that not only allows, but encourages, this type of personal and professional development. I truly believe that if you’re not getting better and continuing to learn, you’re getting worse.”
-Stephanie Dittmer, AJGA Communications Coordinator
One of benefits of working for the AJGA is the opportunity the organization gives employees to go beyond 1980 Sports Club Drive and work and learn with other people. Not only do these opportunities give AJGA employees the chance to shine, but it allows AJGA staff to continue learning and bring their new knowledge back to the organization.
"If you don't get goose bumps when you walk into this place, you don't have a pulse."
-Don Sutton. Baseball Hall of Famer, on the Masters
For the last two years, Hal Tift, Manager of Information Technology, has worked as part of the Masters.com editorial team editing stories and captioning photos, something he says he never would have had the opportunity to do without the AJGA’s connections.
One of Tift’s duties with the AJGA is overseeing live scoring. With an upcoming Web.com Tour event in nearby Athens, Tift pitched an idea that would have him attend the event to learn about how a professional tour runs live scoring. Visiting the Web.com Tour event not only allowed Tift to interact with Web.com Tour staff members and teach them about the AJGA, but also gave him plenty of ideas and knowledge to improve the AJGA’s live-scoring in the future.
"Based on a shared love and respect for golf, we preserve its past, foster its future, and champion its best interests for everyone who enjoys the game."
The AJGA offers the opportunity to operations staff to work at USGA Junior Championships. This allows staff members to see how other organizations run events and bring back ideas to the AJGA, and also provides staff members to interact with industry professionals.
“We are given the opportunity to expand our networks,” said Julie Greenfield, Senior Tournament Director. “Courses and committees value how well-rounded we are, and the experience we gain is applicable to all areas of our lives now, and in the future.”
Through the AJGA and personal connections she made as a result of those experiences, Greenfield has had the opportunity to work as a rules official at the U.S. Girls’ Junior, the U.S. Women’s Amateur, an NCAA Division I Regional, and she currently serves on the Rules Committee for the NCAA Division I Women’s National Championships.
One of Greenfield’s favorite things about the professional development opportunities she has had comes back to the AJGA.
“At the NCAA level, many of the players are AJGA alumni. I get to see our mission and purposes fulfilled and keep in contact with them,” Greenfield said.
"Big things are accomplished only through the perfection of minor details."
-John Wooden, 10-time National Championship basketball coach at UCLA
Last year, Stephanie Dittmer, Communications Coordinator, worked the NCAA Men’s Basketball South Regional in Atlanta, and this year, as the National Championship came to town, she once again had the opportunity to volunteer on the media relations team.
As she worked attending press conferences, transcribing quotes and distributing material to national media, Dittmer not only gained valuable professional experience, but also had the opportunity to share the mission of the AJGA.
“I wore AJGA shirts each day and that provided a great opportunity to start conversation,” said Dittmer. “I told a lot of people from volunteers, to national media personnel about the AJGA, what our mission is, what we do, and what we stand for. It was a great opportunity to network and spread the word about our great organization.”
In case you’ve missed something, be sure to check out our full AJC Top 100 interview series.