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NORTON, Mass – As the New Year rang in, a historic moment for Bay State golf took place.
On January 1, 2018 the merger between the Massachusetts Golf Association and Women’s Golf Association of Massachusetts became official. The two organizations, which represent a combined 200 years of history, were united as one and will now be known as “Mass Golf”.
Over the past year, the leadership groups from both organizations have worked closely to re-imagine its combined purpose, brand and identity in order to contemporize its values, services and benefits to engage membership and grow the game throughout Massachusetts.
“In other words we want to do everything we can to position ourselves to better provide services to our Members Clubs and offer more opportunities to golfers so that everyone has a chance to enjoy this great game,” said Jesse Menachem, Mass Golf’s executive director. “By merging the two organizations, we felt that we were at an important point in golf history where we can join forces to streamline operations and make a real difference.”
The result is the introduction of a new logo, a new name and a completely new interactive and responsive communication platform highlighted by a web site at MassGolf.org. The organization also launched a revamped mobile app and new social sites on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, YouTube and LinkedIn.
“The change in our name, logo and messaging is a clear signal that we are in this together and dedicated to making a difference,” said Sue Curtin, a member of the Mass Golf Board of Directors who also serves as chairperson of the Marketing & Communications Committee responsible for the Mass Golf rebranding effort. “This is a model that we want other golf associations to adopt so that we can universally create better and more equitable opportunities for everyone. From the underprivileged youth who take part in our junior programs to the most senior competitors, we will create a pathway.”
Mass Golf, a 501(c)3 organization, works directly with 360 member clubs which are primarily green-grass facilities with nearly 70 percent offering public play. In addition, the organization provides direct services to more than 87,000 golfers through the world’s largest handicap computation service (GHIN) as well as a wide ranging golfer benefits program that includes elite championship competition, fun individual and team tournaments, a quarterly magazine, news feeds, personal online portals for all members, mobile app, and much more.
It has also been – since 2003 – part of The First Tee national network which brings affordable junior golf programs to youth and communities that did not have them. The First Tee of Massachusetts annually reaches more than 30,000 Bay State youth through programming offered on golf courses, in elementary schools and through other youth-serving organizations.
“We have made it our priority to give back more to golfers,” said Menachem. “Through on-course experiences for golfers of all abilities and ages to online and immediate access to their golf information, we are committed to making the game more accessible and fun.”
Golf has proven to be a big and important business in Massachusetts. The local golf industry is a $1.7 billion dollar industry that supports more than 25,000 jobs in the Bay State.
Note: As a result of the merger, the acronyms of MGA and WGAM will no longer be used.