The OGA-OGCSA Superintendent Spotlight is a new monthly feature which highlights one of the many outstanding superintendents across Oregon and Southwest Washington. The course superintendent does the yeoman’s work – they’re tabbed with keeping our region’s green grass facilites in top notch shape. Make sure to follow this monthly special to learn a little bit more about these unsung heroes.
This month we shine the spotlight on Craig Hilty, who is in his 16th year with Rogue Valley Country Club in Medford, Ore.
Describe your facility in 10 words or less:
A 27 hole Country Club in beautiful Southern Oregon!
What is a little-known fact / fun fact about your facility?
Annually host The Southern Oregon Golf Championship, the largest Amateur Match-Play tournament held on a single course in the U.S.
What is your best 18-hole score at your facility?
Let’s just say I’m not challenging any course records 🙂
What’s the biggest challenge your facility presents to you as superintendent?
Finding creative ways to continually improve our property with with a budget that is never quite enough.
What led you down the path of becoming a superintendent?
After working three years maintenance in High School, I couldn’t believe a job this fun could be a career!
What’s the most interesting thing you’ve witnessed or done as a superintendent?
Watching a Workman MXD float across the pond- Who knew the plastic bed would be so buoyant!
Do you have a superintendent dog?
Yes – Charlie who is a Dachshund-Shepard mix (don’t ask me how that works). He’s a one-year old who serves as the club mascot / goose and widgeon chaser.
Ducks, Beavers or other?
Grapes, hops or milkshake?
Tiger or Phil?
Jack or Arnie?
Excluding your current facility, what is your favorite golf course?
Bandon Dunes- All of them, but I will always be patial to the original Bandon Dunes Course
What’s your favorite tool in your tool box?
My trusty soil moisture probe
What’s your favorite major tournament?
Let’s say there’s a three-day weekend coming up—what are you going to do?
Take the travel trailer and family up in the mountains, outside of cell range!
What would you invent right now to make your professional life easier?
A clone to sit in committee and board meetings.
If you could change a Rule of Golf to make your life easier, what would that be?
Wow, way more than one rule, it needs simplified to loose the pretentious feel and anything to speed play up.
If your owner decided to plow up your course and make it a farm. What crops would you suggest?
Grapes, becoming a viticulturist sounds interesting.
How much sand do you accidentally take home in your socks over the course of a year?
Who is your idol in the golf world?
What is one piece of advice you would give to someone wanting to become a superintendent?
Be transparent with yourself, staff, members and the Superintendent profession will reward you each and every day!
The Oregon Chapter of the Golf Course Superintendents Association of America (GCSAA) is dedicated to providing education, a forum for communication, and the enhancement of the image of its members. The Oregon Golf Course Superintendents Association will be viewed as an organization that promotes the growth and enhancement of golf, provides networking opportunities to all members, encourages leadership and professional development opportunities, supports environmental stewardship, notes the importance of research and development to provide exceptional playing conditions.