If World Golf Foundation CEO Steve Mona, the driving force behind National Golf Day, has his way, Capitol Hill will celebrate golf every day. As part of the ninth annual National Golf Day today, a coalition of the sport’s advocates made their way to Washington, D.C., to educate members of Congress, senior White House officials and senior agency officials about the golf industry.
Mona is no stranger to the industry. His first big-time brush with golf came at the 1982 U.S. Open, where his job with United States Golf Association had him driving Jack Nicklaus back to the clubhouse after each round. Today, though, he is just another guy trying to win a putting contest. As any good golfer knows, the approach can be the most important shot you take—so we talked with Mona about National Golf Day, how he hopes to influence lawmakers and challenges facing the golf industry.
Tell us what National Golf Day entails.
The day begins with the First Tee Congressional Breakfast, at which a number of members of Congress will be present. From there we’ll have a kickoff ceremony in Rayburn Foyer, where a couple of PGA Tour players—Davis Love III and Steve Stricker—will join us. Following kickoff, we will fan out across Capitol Hill to engage in individual meetings.
One of the main attractions will be Michael Breed, a renowned instructor who has a regular presence on Golf Channel. He’ll be giving lessons that day. Karen Palacios-Jansen, [an LPGA Master Professional], will also be there. We’ll have a Republican versus Democrat putting challenge in the lobby. GolfTEC [a custom club-fitting and golf instruction company] will be there to offer opportunities for people to hit shots.