Local pro wins prestigious PGA award

Mike Fields, the teaching pro at the Gallery Golf Course, won the prestigious President's Award at a recent meeting of the Western Washington chapter of the Professional Golfers Association.

The honor is given for promoting player development. Fields, who has been at the Gallery for four years after five at the Whidbey Golf and Country Club, said he and his staff have implemented several programs to stimulate development: free golf lessons in the month of May, a ladies program Thursday evenings for women who work during the day, youth clinics each year, family golf days, different tee lengths for different skill levels, and local participation in Patriot Golf Day, a fund raiser.

Fields said golf participation is dropping nationally, primarily because it takes so long to play a round. He is exploring ways to streamline the sport to fit Americans' hurried lifestyle.

Fields has been a PGA member for 25 years and has served on the orientation committee and is currently on the local board.

Prior to coming to Whidbey Island, the Roseburg, Ore., native worked for 17 years at the Alderbrook Resort on Hood Canal.

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