Golf Digest on Latino labor

By |  November 12, 2013
Latinos: Golf's Emerging Force series in the December 2013 issue of Golf Digest.

Latinos: Golf’s Emerging Force series in the December 2013 issue of Golf Digest.

Have you checked out the new issue of Golf Digest? The one with Mr. Palmer and Kate Upton on the cover?

Check out that last bullet on the cover — Latinos: Golf’s Emerging Force.

The article isn’t available on-line, but you needed to buy a new issue of Golf Digest anyway, right? (Or just do like we do — subscribe.) The series of articles has one story that will be of particular interest to many superintendents. It’s called “The Caretakers” and is written by Gabriel Thompson. In the article, Thompson goes the way of the embedded journalist, and reports on the work of Latino immigrants on golf courses, going so far as to work undercover for a week as a laborer at a West Coast golf course.

Here’s an excerpt:

Wages figure into the equation as well. “It would cost us a fortune if we hired a whole American workforce,” says Lance Rogers, superintendent at Colonia (N.J.) Country Club. “Everyone I know, their work force is all immigrant.” …he goes with a crew from El Salvador, most of whom earn $9 to $10 an hour, which saves the club $70,000 a year. “Those guys are the best,” Rogers says, echoing a sentiment shared by many superintendents. “The day after Hurricane Irene hit they came out and worked through the night, no questions asked.” 

The article won’t be news to superintendents… but it might be news to your members. Worth checking out for sure.

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About the Author: Seth Jones

Seth Jones, a 25-year veteran of the golf industry media, is Editor-in-Chief of Golfdom magazine and Athletic Turf. A graduate of the University of Kansas School of Journalism and Mass Communications, Jones began working for Golf Course Management in 1999 as an intern. In his professional career he has won numerous awards, including a Turf and Ornamental Communicators Association (TOCA) first place general feature writing award for his profile of World Golf Hall of Famer Greg Norman and a TOCA first place photography award for his work covering the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina. In his career, Jones has accumulated an impressive list of interviews, including such names as George H.W. Bush, Samuel L. Jackson, Lance Armstrong and Charles Barkley. Jones has also done in-depth interviews with such golfing luminaries as Norman, Gary Player, Nick Price and Lorena Ochoa, to name only a few. Jones is a member of both the Golf Writers Association of America and the Turf and Ornamental Communicators Association. Jones can be reached at

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