Brian Godfrey Named Notre Dame Golf Course General Manager
Former Blackthorn head pro and course manager to help oversee new Warren Golf Course.
Oct. 30, 1998
Brian Godfrey, head golf professional and course manager at South Bend’s Blackthorn Golf Club for the past four-plus years, has been named to the new position of general manager for the Notre Dame Golf Courses. In that capacity, he will oversee the existing nine-hole Notre Dame Golf Course and the 18-hole Warren Golf Course that is slated to open in September of 1999.
The 37-year-old Godfrey–who also has past experience as an assistant or head professional at The Hoosier Links, The Links Golf Club and Crooked Stick Golf Club-was scheduled to assume his new position on Oct. 30.
Godfrey’s duties will center on overseeing the operation of both golf courses, in addition to pro shop, club house and driving range management. He will be responsible for coordinating course use to balance and meet the requirements of the varsity golf teams, course members, faculty, staff and students. Godfrey also will maintain the golf facility budget, develop membership plans and oversee staff training and management.
“We are very excited to have Brian heading up the golf course management and his leadership will be a tremendous benefit to the University community,” said Notre Dame associate athletic director Bubba Cunningham, who oversees the day-to-day management of the athletic department’s finance and facility affairs.
“Brian has quality experience at a high-end public facility and is very familiar with our golf coaches and players, faculty and students who play at Blackthorn,” added Cunningham. “Brian also was involved with opening Blackthorn, so he’s prepared for all the little things that creep up during that process. Overall, he’s a perfect fit for this position and we’re excited to have him aboard.”
A native of Michigan City, Ind., Godfrey has completed three phases of the PGA Business School and is an A-1 member of the Professional Golfers’ Association of America. He joined the Blackthorn staff as head pro and course manager in July of 1994 and helped oversee the course’s opening one month later. Blackthorn, a 19-hole public facility that played 28,000 rounds in its first full season (1995), was cited as the “fourth best new public course in America” by Golf Digest Magazine in August of 1994. The course also was featured in a July 1995 issue of Golf Magazine and has become known as a public course with the service of a top 100 private club.
A 1983 graduate of Indiana University with a bachelor of science degree in Public Affairs, Godfrey first became involved in golf course management in October of 1988, as assistant golf pro at The Hoosier Links, a privately owned, daily-fee public course that totaled 40,000 rounds of play per season.
After spending 21 months at The Hoosiers Links under the tutelage of PGA Master Professional Don Essig, III, Godfrey accepted a position in July of 1990 as assistant golf professional at The Links Golf Club, a privately owned, daily-fee public course that played host to 35,000 rounds per season. Under the tutelage of The Links owner and PGA Professional Jerry Hayslett, Godfrey achieved his Class A PGA Member status and was promoted to head golf professional at The Links in May of 1992.
Godfrey next served as an assistant to PGA Pro Jim Ferriell, Jr., from March of 1993 to July of 1994 at Crooked Stick Golf Club in Indianapolis, an 18-hole private facility with 225 members and the site of numerous United States Golf Association national championships.
BRIAN GODFREY: “Obviously, I am delighted to be a part of the Notre Dame community. I’ve had the opportunity to spend some time with the administration and staff involved with the Warren Golf Course and it is a very exciting process. The course has had some great growth this fall and the September of 1999 opening is very feasible at this point. … I feel that I’ve developed a great working relationship with the Notre Dame golfers and coaches. Both teams have some very talented players and the golf facility should help the programsdevelop … The course looks really impressive from the tees right now. The way that the bunkers have been constructed provides a unique layout and will pose some tough challenges.”
GEORGE THOMAS, 11TH-YEAR NOTRE DAME MEN’S GOLF COACH: “Brian Godfrey is a very positive person who will do an exceptional job in this responsibility. The Warren course will be a similar operation to his experience at Blackthorn and he did an excellent job in his years there. I’ve known Brian and his family for a long time-he used to play at Long Beach Country Club (in Michigan City, Ind.) when I was teaching there. He’s very knowledgeable in many areas and is a very easy person to work with. When we hosted the BIG EAST men’s golf championship at Blackthorn last year, he did a great job running things and was always very professional and accommodating. Brian just had the best balance and all-around experience and that’s what made him such a natural for this position.”
Warren Golf Course manager Brian Godfrey (left) and course
superintendantKim Hocker visit near the 15th green (May 1, 1999).