EXCEL Leadership Program names 12 assistants to inaugural class

Funded by Nufarm, the new GCSAA program offers training, education specific to and exclusively for assistant superintendents.


EXCEL Leadership Program

Twelve assistant superintendent members of GCSAA have been chosen for the first class of the EXCEL Leadership Program, which is funded by Nufarm and administered by GCSAA’s philanthropic organization, the Environmental Institute for Golf.

EXCEL offers leadership training for personal, career and community/industry stewardship. The name “EXCEL” represents the education, cross-training, community focus, encouragement and leadership development that the program fosters.

The program will feature two two-day training sessions — one at Nufarm’s headquarters in Chicago and the other at GCSAA headquarters in Lawrence, Kan. — each year of the three-year program cycle. In addition to the two-day training events, EXCEL members will also receive five-day trips to the annual Golf Industry Show, beginning with the 2018 Golf Industry Show Feb. 3-8 in San Antonio.

“Assistant superintendents are the future of the profession,” says GCSAA CEO Rhett Evans. “I congratulate the first members of the EXCEL program and look forward to meeting them in San Antonio. They are taking steps to not only grow their own careers, but to be the next generation of leaders of our association and the superintendent profession.”

The members of the 2018 EXCEL Leadership Program are:

  • Jens Arneson of Maple Bluff Country Club in Madison, Wis.
  • Travis M. Cook of The Country Club of Birmingham in Birmingham, Ala.
  • Phillip A. Fischer of Brickyard Crossing Golf Course in Indianapolis
  • Zachary Fleeger of Stowe Mountain Club in Stowe, Vt.
  • Richard K. Haines of Onwentsia Club in Lake Forest, Ill.
  • Stephen Hicks of Brantford (Ontario) Golf & Country Club
  • Joshua S. Lemons of Golden Valley Country Club in Minneapolis
  • Jessica K. Lenihan of Hayden Lake Country Club in Hayden, Idaho
  • Tyler R. LePore of Talisker Club at Tuhaye in Park City, Utah
  • Brycen Meng of Indian Hills Country Club in Mission Hills, Kan.
  • Mitchell E. Savage of Green Valley Ranch Golf Club in Denver
  • Steven Shavel of Double Eagle Club in Galena, Ohio

“After the planning and development of the EXCEL program, it’s exciting to have our first class and see it come to fruition,” says Steve Vincent, Nufarm Turf & Ornamental sales manager. “We assembled a great team of future leaders, and they will have a full slate of activities at the Golf Industry Show to start their journey.”