Dana Schultz joined Troon in 1999. The former general manager at Champion Hills in Hendersonville, North Carolina, is now a regional director of operations, supporting the teams managing Troon-affiliated courses in North and South Carolina, Georgia, Virginia, Tennessee, and Kentucky.
How has the role of women in golf changed since you started working at Troon?
I’ve definitely seen a huge change in this demographic, both in terms of employment and in the game of golf itself. I certainly see a lot more ladies playing than I did when I started in 1999. At Troon, our focus is to let folks know we welcome everyone in the company. We have a lot of different areas that we manage, from marketing to accounting and many other options. If golf is a hobby or passion of yours, but don’t want to work at a course, we still have great opportunities.
What efforts are you a part of at Troon to bring more women to the game?
I joined Troon’s Diversity, Equity and Inclusion (DEI) Council specifically for this reason. We are supporting many community engagement initiatives to bring more women to the game such as The First Tee, First Green Program, Women in Golf Foundation, Midnight Golf, and PGA Reach, to name a few. I recently received my certification in PGA Hope and look forward to working with all of our veterans beginning this May.
What advice do you share with women interested in the golf industry?
First, if they are looking for a mentor, I’m always willing to listen in order to offer advice that is specific to their interests. We do have a lot of women in different roles at Troon now, so I also encourage them to ask questions of those women and others in our industry. Ultimately, I want them to know that the opportunities are endless and a career in the golf industry can take you around the world if you are looking for adventure and variety, and you can also excel in your role at one club and continue to grow your career organically. There are 100’s of other different roles that you can fulfill, and which will advance your career path in the golf industry. We just have to continue to remind women of those options.
Who is your role model?
My story involves my parents, who always supported any sport I wanted to play, especially golf. Growing up my dad would commute to Houston every day for his M-F job and on Saturday mornings all he wanted to do was play golf. The problem was that the course we played didn’t allow women to play before noon. It really started to bother him and one Saturday, we arrived early for our noon tee time and when my dad checked in, he nicely said, “My 14-year-old daughter can beat half of the men out there. When will she be able to play golf before noon on Saturdays?” The next Saturday, we were on the tee by 9 am. That is what really motivated me to continue to pursue golf as a college athlete and lifelong career.
What impact can Women’s Golf Month have?
Within Troon that’s our focus for all of June, so we want to make sure all of our properties are pushing forward with clinics, different events, making people aware of how women-friendly our golf professionals are and how they want women to be comfortable at the course. From an industry standpoint, we all want to build camaraderie among women who are just getting into the game and let them know that there is a lot of fun to be had out there.
What’s one thing most people don’t know about you?
When I worked in Anguilla, I had the opportunity to play golf with many famous guests, and the most entertaining round was with Jimmy Johnson and his pit crew.