USGA boosts GCSAA Conference and Trade Show support

The GCSAA Conference and Trade Show is returning to Orlando and so is #GCITweetUp23.

After a couple virtual years on Zoom, where pretty much everybody was just a face in a rectangle, Golf Course Industry (@GCIMagazine) and Aquatrols (@Aquatrols) are bringing the 12th annual #GCITweetUp and Super Social Media Awards ceremony back to the show floor. We’re excited. We hope you’re excited. It’ll be a blast. See you at the Aquatrols booth #2373 at 3 p.m. Wednesday, Feb. 8 at the Orange County Convention Center.

And you can still follow along online, too. Because what is a Super Social Media Awards campaign without some social media element? We’ll recognize and honor winners, shared on our Twitter and Facebook accounts Jan. 17-Jan. 26 and beamed to your screens in short videos before bringing together 2021, ’22 and ’23 winners for a special celebration of the last three years in the Theme Park Capital of the World. Hosted by Golf Course Industry managing editor Matt LaWell, the festivities will include live music, drinks and 2023-style camaraderie. The Happy Hour portion of the event begins at 2 p.m.

Want to nominate a colleague, a friend, or even yourself? Go for it, especially if you think they (or you) use social media to demonstrate leadership, inspire those you work with, share ideas to enhance operations, provide course updates, share messages in creative ways, and, above all else, tell the story of the golf industry in a positive manner.

We’ll honor folks in the following categories: The John Kaminski Award for Social Media Leadership, Best Overall Use of Social Media, Best Twitter Feed, Best Use of Video, Best Idea Shared and the Conservation Award. And if you want to nominate somebody for some other category, like Rookie of the Year, or Top Drone Operator, or whatever else you can dream up, go right ahead! We’re never locked in to just six awards. (Evidence of that is below in the full list of winners.) Industry professionals who benefit from using social media for work purposes will determine the direction of some awards.

Multiple nominations in the same or different categories are acceptable. The Golf Course Industry editorial staff and a panel of industry experts and educators will make the final selections. Please include the category and appropriate links in emails or DMs sent to editor-in-chief Guy Cipriano at [email protected] or @GCIMagazineGuy, or LaWell at [email protected] or @MattLaWell. Email, tweet or call Cipriano at 216-393-0230 with questions.

The deadline for nominations is Friday, Dec. 28.


Past winners


Kaminski Award: Paul Larsen, Royal St. George’s Golf Club, Sandwich, Kent, England,

Best Overall Use of Social Media: Jennifer Torres, Westlake Golf and Country Club, Jackson Township, New Jersey; NC State Turf Pathology Team, Raleigh North Carolina

Best Twitter Feed: John Reilly, Longboat Key Club, Longboat Key, Florida; Jeremy Boone, Springdale at Cold Mountain, Canton, North Carolina

Best Use of Video: Mike Rollins, SIP, In the van, Everywhere USA

Best Idea Shared: David Jones, Club at Indian Springs, Broken Arrow, Oklahoma, “Value of playing other golf courses”

Conservation Award: Isaac Breuer, A.L. Gustin Golf Course, Columbia, Missouri


Kaminski Award: Drew Miller and the Brentsville District High School Turfgrass Management Program, Nokesville, Virginia

Best Overall Use of Social Media: James Bledge, Royal Cinque Ports Golf Club, Deal, Kent, England; Ryan Cummings, Elcona Country Club, Bristol, Indiana

Best Twitter Feed: Dan Grogan, The Sagamore Club, Noblesville, Indiana; Jeff Sexton, Evansville Country Club, Evansville, Indiana; Thad Thompson, Terry Hills Golf Course, Batavia, New York

Best New Program: Morgan Creighton, Women in Turfgrass Management, Alberta, Canada

Best Idea Shared: Trey Kemp, Kimley-Horn and Associates, Dallas-Fort Worth, #GolfCourseAerialoftheDay

Rookie of the Year: Matt Shaffer, happily retired

Conservation Award: W. Craig Weyandt, The Moorings at Hawks Nest Golf Course, Vero Beach, Florida


Kaminski Award: Tyler Bloom, Sparrows Point Country Club, Baltimore

Best Overall Use of Social Media: Carolinas GCSA Assistants, Liberty, South Carolina; Bill Bergin, Bergin Golf Designs, Atlanta

Best Twitter Feed: Maggie Reiter, University of California Cooperative Extension, Fresno, California; Michael Vessley, Culver Academies Golf Course, Culver, Indiana

Best Video: Rush Creek Turf, Maple Grove, Minnesota, “Maintenance Monday”

Best Idea Shared on Social Media: Trent Manning, Ansley Golf Club, Ansley, Georgia, “Dew Roller”

Conservation Award: Lesley Thomas, Scarboro Golf & Country Club, Toronto, Ontario


Kaminski Award: Jason Haines, Pender Harbour Golf Club, Pender Harbour, British Columbia

Best Overall Use of Social Media: Craig Boath, Carnoustie Golf Links, Carnoustie, Scotland; Jessica Lenihan, Hayden Lake Country Club, Coeur d’Alene, Idaho

Best Twitter Feed: Paul Van Buren, Kanawha Club, Manakin-Sabot, Virginia; Scott Ramsay, The Course at Yale, New Haven, Connecticut

Best Blog: Tyler Bloom, Sparrows Point Country Club, Baltimore, Maryland; Kevin Komer, Stowe Mountain Resort, Stowe, Vermont

Best Use of Video: Ontario GCSA, “Today in Ontario”

Conservation Award: Matthew Gourlay, Colbert Hills, Manhattan, Kansas


Kaminski Award: Matthew Wharton, Carolina Golf Club, Charlotte, North Carolina

Best Overall Use of Social Media: Ian Andrew, Ian Andrew Golf Design, Brantford, Ontario; St Andrews Turf Team, St Andrews, Scotland

Best Twitter Feed: Steve Hammon, Traverse City Golf & Country Club, Traverse City, Michigan; Steve Wright, Pine Tree Golf Club, Boynton Beach, Florida

Best Blog: Chris Harriman, Cattail Creek Country Club, Glenwood, Maryland; Richard Johnstone, Nairn Dunbar Golf Links, Nairn, Scotland

Best Use of Video: Atlantic Golf Course Superintendents Association, “Deep Roots”

Megaphone Award for Hurricane Recovery: South Texas Superintendents

Conservation Award: Paul Carter, The Bear Trace at Harrison Bay, Tennessee


Kaminski Award: Chris Tritabaugh, Hazeltine National Golf Club, Chaska, Minnesota

Best Overall Use of Social Media: Kyle Callahan, Victoria National, Newburgh, Indiana; Steffie Safrit, TPC Piper Glen, Charlotte, North Carolina

Best Twitter Feed: Matthew Marsh, Santa Ana Country Club, Santa Ana, California; Sean McCue, The Country Club at Castle Pines, Castle Rock, Colorado; Mike Richardson, University of Arkansas, Fayetteville, Arkansas; Jesse Shaver, Gull Lake Country Club, Richland, Michigan

Best Blog: Brian Stiehler, Highlands Country Club, Highlands, North Carolina; East Lake Golf Club Agronomy Team, East Lake Golf Club, Atlanta

Best Video: Phil Scully, Granite Golf Club, Stouffville, Ontario, “It’s Your Course!”; Georgia GCSA, “Golf is Greenspace”


Kaminski Award: Paul Carter, The Bear Trace at Harrison Bay, Harrison, Tennessee

Best Overall Use of Social Media: Rick Tegtmeier, Des Moines Golf and Country Club, West Des Moines, Iowa; Joe Wachter, Glen Echo Country Club, St. Louis

Best Twitter Feed: Eric Bauer, Bluejack National, Montgomery, Texas; Paul Koch, University of Wisconsin, Madison, Wisconsin; Patrick Reinhardt, Georgia Southern University Golf Course, Statesboro, Georgia

Best Blog: Joel Kachmarek, Tacoma Country & Golf Club, Lakewood, Washington; Brad Novotny, Hillendale Country Club, Phoenix, Maryland

Best Video: Graeme Roberts, Camberley Heath Golf Club, Surrey, United Kingdom

Megaphone Award for Outstanding Advocacy: Mike Huck, Irrigation and Turfgrass Services, Orange County, California


Kaminski Award: Steve Cook, Oakland Hills Country Club, Bloomfield Hills, Michigan

Best Overall Use of Social Media: Matthew Wharton, Carolina Golf Club, Charlotte, North Carolina; Pat O’Brien, Hyde Park Golf and Country Club, Cincinnati

Best Twitter Feed: Scot Dey, Mission Viejo Country Club, Mission Viejo, California; Kevin Hicks, Coeur d’Alene Resort Golf Club, Coeur D’Alene, Idaho; Jason Hooper, Quilchena Golf & Country Club, Richmond, British Columbia

Best Blog: Joey Franco, Brookstone Golf & Country Club, Acworth, Georgia; Adam Garr, Plum Hollow Country Club, Southfield, Michigan

Best Video: Georgia GCSA, “Stewards of the Land”


Kaminski Award: Micah Woods, Asian Turfgrass Center

Overall Social Media Program: Nick Christians, Iowa State University; Adam Ikamas, MiGCSA

Best Use of Facebook: Gary Grigg, Idaho/Florida; Jason Chennault, Turfgrass World

Best Blog: Jason Haines, Pender Harbour Golf Club, Madeira Park, British Columbia; Jason VanBuskirk, Stow Acres Country Club, Stow, Massachusetts; Tom Vlach, TPC Sawgrass, Ponte Vedra Beach, Florida

Best Use of Twitter: Randy Samoff, Champions Golf Club, Houston Texas; Ellie Parry, TurfJobs, Loughborough, Leicestershire, England; Justin VanLanduit, Briarwood Country Club, Deerfield, Illinois; Cale Bigelow, Purdue University

Best Multimedia: Adam Garr, Plum Hollow Country Club, Southfield, Michigan; Rick Brandenburg, NC State


Kaminski Award: Bill Brown, Hartefeld National Golf Club, Avondale, Pennsylvania

Outstanding Blogger: Andrew Hardy, Pheasant Run Golf Course, Sharon, Ontario; Dan Meersman, Philadelphia Cricket Club, Philadelphia; Brian Boyer, Cinnabar Hills Golf Club, San Jose, California

Outstanding Use of Twitter: Chris Tritabaugh, Hazeltine National Golf Club, Chaska, Minnesota; Matthew Gourlay, Colbert Hills, Manhattan, Kansas

Special Achievement in Video/Other: PACE Turf LLC, San Diego, PACE Turf YouTube Videos; Steve Biehl, Naperville Country Club, Naperville, Illinois; GCM Blogging World


Kaminski Award: Darren Davis, Olde Florida Golf Club, Naples, Florida

Best of Blogs: Chris Tritabaugh, Northland Country Club, Duluth, Minnesota; Steve Cook, Oakland Hills Country Club, Bloomfield Hills, Michigan; Bill Brown, Hartefeld National Golf Club, Avondale, Pennsylvania

Innovative Use of Twitter: Greg Shaffer, Elcona Country Club, Bristol, Indiana; David Phipps, Stone Creek Country Club, Oregon City, Oregon

Excellence in Video: Justin Ruiz, Indian Summer Golf & Country Club, Olympia, Washington

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