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National Golf Foundation History

Founded in 1936 by Herb and Joe Graffis with $17,000 from six financially strapped equipment manufacturers, the NGF’s original mission was to reverse the game’s decline that began with the stock market crash of 1929 and grew steadily worse, even as other segments of the nation’s economy started shaking off the Great Depression.

The NGF’s initial efforts, which included publishing a book on golf course construction (How to Build a Golf Course) and developing and maintaining a record of the nation’s golf courses, continue to be reflected in the Foundation’s important modern functions: golf facility development and operations consulting and the tracking of industry trends.

The early recordings of golf facilities gained the Foundation widespread national recognition as “the research organization of the golf industry.” To this day, even though it touches every facet of the game, market research is the activity for which the NGF is best known.

The Foundation assumed a major leadership role in 1981 by calling the first industry-wide “Forum for Golf” in Dallas, Texas. Although the 100-plus corporate and association executives attending the forum didn’t adopt the specific proposals put before them, the meeting thrust the NGF to the front as the umbrella organization for the golf industry – crediting it with identifying golf as a distinct industry.

The NGF has since matured, with more than 3,500 members representing every facet of the industry: golf equipment and apparel companies; golf publications; golf course architects; developers and builders; companies offering specialized services to the golf industry; private and public golf facilities; national, regional, state and local golf associations who support the Foundation’s work.

Today the NGF is the industry leader in helping golf businesses succeed by providing relevant and actionable information and insights on the business of golf. NGF Consulting, Inc. provides sales and marketing advisory services, proprietary research, a full suite of direct marketing and database assets, as well as golf facility consulting services to public and private sector clients. NGF offers accurate, relevant, reliable and impartial information to help companies make stronger strategic and tactical decisions. Generating studies, surveys and reports on golf participation, golf consumer spending, facility development and more, NGF continually examines the various trends and developments in the golf industry to make its members and clients the best-informed organizations in the business of golf.

The 23-member staff works out of a national headquarters building in Jupiter, FL. It is headed by President and CEO, Dr. Joseph Beditz, who reports to the board of directors.

Last Updated: 4/8/2010 12:05:56 AM / Generated at: 2/15/2019 3:53:21 PM