PONTE VEDRA BEACH, Fla. – The PGA TOUR have announced that Champions Tour President Mike Stevens is leaving the PGA TOUR effective Jan. 1, 2015. It was also announced that Greg McLaughlin, currently Senior Vice President of PGA TOUR Championship Management, is transitioning into the role.
Now 56 years old, Stevens felt that after a 35-year career in professional golf, both as a Tournament Director at the RBC Heritage and Senior Executive roles at the PGA TOUR, the time was right to make a change and tendered his resignation this week.
“Mike has done an exemplary job in leading the Champions Tour since 2008. Mike brought fresh ideas and enthusiasm for the Champions Tour and we are grateful for all of his contributions and wish him all the best as he transitions into the next phase of his life,” said PGA TOUR Commissioner Tim Finchem.
“We are extremely pleased to have someone of Greg’s quality to step into the role,” added Finchem. “Greg brings great experience, as both a tournament director and administrator. This perspective will ensure future growth and success of the Champions Tour.”
Prior to joining the TOUR in 1997, Stevens spent 18 years in Hilton Head Island, S.C., working in various sports marketing and event-management roles including Tournament Director of the RBC Heritage, a long-standing PGA TOUR event, and President of Classic Sports, an event management and sports marketing company. Stevens has also served in senior positions at the PGA TOUR, starting in 1997 as Vice President, Corporate Marketing and in 2000 with the Web.com Tour as Vice President, Tournament Business Affairs and Sponsor Development.
Stevens is a graduate of Penn State University, a member of the University’s Smeal College of Business Advisory Board and in 2011 received the Outstanding Alumni Award from the College of Recreation, Parks, Tourism and Sports Management.
“I’ve had a great 35-year career in professional golf, first as Tournament Director at the RBC Heritage and then serving in an executive role with the PGA TOUR,” Stevens said. “Having said that, I just feel the time is right to pursue other opportunities. I have had the privilege to work with a dedicated staff on the Champions Tour and take great pride in the growth we have achieved. I firmly believe the Champions Tour is well positioned for the future. I would like to thank Commissioner Finchem, Ed Moorhouse and Charlie Zink for the opportunities they’ve given me and their support throughout my career. It’s been an honor to have worked at the PGA TOUR.
“I look forward to working with Greg McLaughlin for the remainder of the year and I am confident that he will be able to continue the important initiatives that the Champions Tour team has developed over the last seven years.”
McLaughlin joined the PGA TOUR in June, 2014 after serving as President and CEO of the Tiger Woods Foundation for 14 years. In addition to running the Foundation, McLaughlin oversaw the three tournaments run by the organization – Quicken Loans National, Deutsche Bank Championship and the Hero World Challenge.
Prior to joining the Tiger Woods Foundation in 2000, McLaughlin was the Tournament Director at the Northern Trust Open, The Honda Classic and BMW Championship.
“I am grateful for the opportunity to work with the players and staff of the Champions Tour to continue to help grow this unique and exciting tour,” said McLaughlin. “Mike has done a wonderful job over the past seven years and I look forward to continuing those efforts in growing the Champions Tour.”
ABOUT THE CHAMPIONS TOUR:
Collectively, the Champions Tour has the most recognizable and accomplished players in the game, with many of its 32 members in the World Golf Hall of Fame competing regularly in its events. The Tour also counts numerous other major championship winners among its members. The Champions Tour is a membership organization of professional golfers age 50 and older. Conceived in 1980 as the Senior PGA Tour, it started with just four events and purses totaling $475,000.
The Champions Tour’s primary purpose is to provide financial opportunities for its players, entertain and inspire its fans, deliver substantial value to its partners, create outlets for volunteers to give back, protect the integrity of the game and generate significant charitable and economic impact in communities in which it plays. Points earned in official Charles Schwab Cup events in 2013 determined Kenny Perry as the Charles Schwab Cup champion, the season-long competition designed to recognize the Champions Tour’s leading player.
The PGA TOUR’s website is PGATOUR.COM, the No. 1 site in golf, and the organization is headquartered in Ponte Vedra Beach, Fla. Follow the Champions Tour at facebook.com/ChampionsTour and on Twitter @ChampionsTour.
Source: PGA TOUR