Lynne Hunter is the Head Professional at Kenwood Country Club in Bethesda, MD. Lynne was elected to membership in the LPGA T&CP and PGA of America in 2007 and is one of only a handful of female Head Golf Professionals in the Middle Atlantic area.
How did you get into golf?
My parents joined a country club and signed me up for the junior golf program when I was 12. I’ll admit it, I didn’t love the game at first. Thank goodness I had a friend in the program with me, and we played together and went to the pool after golf each week. By the time she moved away, I had gotten hooked on the game and was competing with the boys. I guess it stuck with me after that.
How long have you been in the golf profession?
I spent my summers while in college working at a golf course (both in the accounting office and in the golf shop), but I don’t count those as years in the profession, even though I was learning about the business the whole time. I started my full-time career in golf 22 years ago, taking a job as a buyer and assistant manager of a golf retail store. After a few years of learning the ropes of managing a retail business and staff, I realized I missed being at the course and took a job at a small country club as their merchandise manager. Within 6 months, I was convinced by my head pro to enter the apprentice program and join the LPGA T&CP. Eventually, I moved to take an assistant professional position at Kenwood, 18 years ago.
When did you know you wanted to be a head professional, and how did you plan you career to make sure you achieved your goal?
When I became an apprentice professional, I had aspirations of becoming a head professional and running a business and a golf course. The planning part was more of a “work in progress” throughout my years. My first step was to look at my strengths and weaknesses and start to build my resume. I wanted to face my weaknesses and strengthen my skills in those areas. I had business experience, and a business management degree, but I knew very little about teaching, so I joined the T&CP to learn to teach first, feeling that the T&CP had the best education in teaching. I had no idea that teaching would be so rewarding and become a passion of mine. During my initial assessment of my skills, I also felt that, in order to be able to compete for Head Professional positions, I was going to need the same certification that my competitors had in the PGA Membership. Becoming dual member was inevitable for me. Throughout my 15 years as an assistant professional, I re-evaluated my strengths and weaknesses every few years and looked for ways to develop my skills, and grow/learn as a professional.
What are some of the highlights and/or accomplishments you have had in your career?
- 2010 LPGA NE Section Professional of the Year
- 2012 LPGA NE Junior Golf Leader
- 2012 US Kids Master Top 50 Kids Teacher (2008, 2010, 2011)
- 2006 Jack Weber Award at Kenwood CC (recognized by my members for long term contributions to the golf programs at the club)
- 2013 Elected MAPGA Central Chapter Secretary
Why are you an LPGAT&CP Member?
I joined the T&CP to learn to teach. I feel like the education I received in our program greatly contributed to my success as a teacher in my career. It set me apart from my peers at my club, and I learned many different “tools” and teaching strategies that I feel contributed to my success. I continue to be a T&CP member because of the friends I have made within the organization.
What would you like to see for yourself and the T&CP in the future?
I would like to see the T&CP continue to grow both in size and in relevance in the industry. Our teachers and educators are just beginning to get noticed as “leaders” in the industry. We have so many talented members in our organization; I would love to see us get more women recognized for their contributions to the industry.