Gavelek honored as 2015 AJGA Superintendent of the Year
The American Junior Golf Association has presented the Superintendent of the Year Award to Greg Gavelek of Longbow Golf Club for his work with the Winn Grips Heather Farr Classic hosted by Longbow Golf Club.
Each year, the AJGA presents awards to the tournaments with the best individual hospitality, Junior-Am fundraising tournament, charitable giving and volunteer base. Awards are also given to the events with the highest media and social media participation. Finally, the AJGA recognizes the year’s most outstanding golf professional, superintendent and general manager, as well as the most improved event, best new event, best Junior All-Star tournament, best Invitational and overall tournament of the year. Tournament awards for the 2015 season will be presented on-site at 2016 tournaments.
Within the past few years, the southwest has been plagued by severe drought, and Gavelek has managed to help develop one of the top golf courses on the AJGA schedule.
“I am extremely proud to receive this award,” Gavelek said. “It is a direct reflection on how hard the crew works. It shows that what we do is being recognized and appreciated. I think it shows that the product we put out there for golfers on a daily basis is tournament-tested by some of the best players in the world.”
Gavelek has worked at Longbow Golf Club for nearly 20 years since the club first broke ground in 1997, first as Assistant Superintendent, and then he became Superintendent the very next year. He helped to oversee the course’s redesign and reconstruction in 2003, and under his guidance, the course has become one of the top venues in Arizona.
“I recognize Greg Gavelek as the man behind the success of not only each event, but Longbow Golf Club as a whole,” said Longbow Golf Club Owner and General Manager Bob McNichols. “There is nobody in golf more accomplished or qualified for his position.”
Desert golf is typified by extreme conditions, and Gavelek has managed to maintain Longbow Golf Club in near-perfect conditions through temperatures that often reach 110-115 degrees with minimal resources.
“If it’s not the extreme heat of the summer months, it could also be lightning storms or monsoon rains,” McNichols said. “Greg maintains a dedication to perfection even through the most difficult conditions.”
The Winn Grips Heather Farr Classic hosted by Longbow Golf Club has been an annual event for Gavelek and the staff at Longbow Golf Club since 2004, and the work of the maintenance crew is one of the main reasons it has grown into one of the most popular Open events on the AJGA schedule.
Although this marks the first Superintendent of the Year Award for Gavelek, the Winn Grips Heather Farr Classic hosted by Longbow Golf Club has been honored with the Tournament of the Year, Golf Professional of the Year, Media, Volunteer and Junior Am-Fundraising Tournament Awards since its inception in 1999.