At 11 a.m. on opening day of the PGA Show, focus turned to the #inviteHER panel discussion held on the PGA Forum Stage. The presentation included industry influencers on both the women’s and men’s side of the game who came together to discuss the impact and potential of #inviteHER and how its overall success will positively affect all aspects of the golf industry.
World Golf Foundation CEO Steve Mona opened the conversation by outlining the development and progress of the WE ARE GOLF Women’s Task Force. The panel discussion was moderated by Ashleigh McLaughlin, Director of the LPGA Women’s Network, and included powerhouse lineup of women leaders. Headlined by PGA of America President Suzy Whaley, the group also included LPGA T&CP President Marvel Barnard; Chair of the WE ARE GOLF Women’s Task Force Jane Geddes; Cathy Harbin, owner of Pine Ridge Golf Course in Paris, Texas; and Donna Orender, CEO of Orender Unlimited and Founder of Generation W.
The panel covered a variety of topics including first impressions, the different ways in which men and women perceive the game and how to provide golf instruction to women.
“The difference is not so much in how you teach them, but how you engage them,” said Barnard. “It’s the social element and the sense of belonging. When I get a new student who’s a woman, I’ll take them into the golf shop, introduce them to the staff and show them around the facility. I want them to feel comfortable everywhere at the facility and within the game.”
Another topic was communication with women in the workplace.
“Language is very important,” said President Whaley. “Are people’s voices being heard and are things being communicated in a way that everyone is on the same page? Donna and I developed a Connecting With Her platform along with the PGA several years ago, and it looked at the various patterns of how men and women do things. One thing we we learned is that women place greater emphasis on communication and cohesiveness in the workplace.”
WE ARE GOLF and the LPGA Women’s Network partnered in the launch of, #inviteHER, a nationwide campaign encouraging golfers to extend an invitation to a woman in their life to play golf. With the continued focus on women and millennials and their introduction to the game, the #inviteHER initiative has had a substantial impact since its initial launch in August 2018.