Welcome, golf enthusiasts! I'm John Failla, your host on the Golf Sustainability Podcast. In today's episode, we're honored to have Sandy Cross, the Chief People Officer at the PGA of America, as our guest. Sandy will share insights on a topic close to my heart—inspiring diversity and inclusion in golf.

In this engaging conversation, Sandy and I delve into her career journey, from starting as a licensing administrator to her current roles overseeing people operations, diversity and inclusion, and more. We discuss the PGA of America's grand vision for the golf industry, aiming to reflect the diverse demographics of America in both participants and workforce.

Sandy highlights five key areas of commitment in their inclusion efforts, touching on governance, education, workforce, procurement, and community initiatives. We explore groundbreaking programs like PGA Works, aimed at diversifying the golf industry workforce, and initiatives such as Make Golf Your Career and Make Golf Your Business, fostering diversity in career opportunities and supply chains.

Discover how grassroots grants play a crucial role in building relationships with diverse communities and supporting local programs that make golf accessible to all. Sandy also shares personal insights, including the transformative power of golf, her inspiration from her parents, and the challenges and triumphs of relocating the PGA of America during the pandemic.

Join us on this inspiring journey into the heart of golf and diversity. Stay tuned for more engaging episodes on the Golf Sustainability Podcast!


Topics Covered:

Introduction and Career Journey

Timestamp: 00:00:00 to 00:04:00

Overview: Introduction of the podcast, welcoming the guest Sandy Cross, Chief People Officer at the PGA of America. Sandy briefly discusses her career journey and her current role at the PGA of America.

Framework for Diversity and Inclusion at PGA of America

Timestamp: 00:04:01 to 00:07:00

Overview: Sandy discusses the overarching framework for diversity and inclusion at PGA of America, focusing on the commitment areas, including governance, education, workforce, procurement, and community.

Internal Diversity and Inclusion Programs

Timestamp: 00:07:01 to 00:10:00

Overview: The discussion revolves around the importance of starting diversity and inclusion efforts internally. Sandy highlights PGA Lead, a program identifying and developing diverse PGA professionals, as an example.

Industry-wide Initiatives and Programs

Timestamp: 00:10:01 to 00:15:00

Overview: Sandy talks about industry-wide initiatives such as PGA Works for diversifying the golf industry workforce and Make Golf Your Career for connecting job seekers with golf industry employers. She also introduces Make Golf Your Business for diverse suppliers.

Grassroots Initiatives and Community Engagement

Timestamp: 00:15:01 to 00:28:00

Overview: The focus is on grassroots efforts, including the PGA Reach grassroots grants program, PGA Junior League, and efforts to make golf more accessible and inclusive at the community level. Sandy emphasizes the value of partnerships with organizations embedded in local communities.


Resources and People Mentioned:

PGA of America: The professional trade association for golf professionals in America.

PGA Lead: A program to identify and develop PGA of America golf professionals from diverse backgrounds.

Make Golf Your Thing: An industry-wide initiative to diversify the golf industry's workforce, supply chain, and participant base.

MakeGolfYourCareer.org: A platform offering job seekers a centralized destination for exploring careers in the golf industry.

MakeGolfYourBusiness.org: A platform connecting diverse-owned vendors with business decision-makers for procurement in the golf industry.

PGA Reach: The charitable foundation of the PGA of America.

PGA Works: A strategic initiative under PGA Reach to diversify the golf industry workforce through fellowships, scholarships, career exploration eve

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