Golf industry veteran Ty Votaw announces retirement from PGA TOUR
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Former LPGA commissioner, TOUR executive celebrates 30 years as an industry leader
PONTE VEDRA BEACH, Florida – Following an illustrious 30-year career that has been underscored by prominent and transformational positions within the golf industry, the PGA TOUR today announced that Ty Votaw, Executive Vice President, International, will be retiring. While he will be leaving his current role in the organization, effective in June, he will remain as a key consultant to the TOUR.
Votaw, Commissioner of the LPGA Tour from 1999-2005, has served in multiple capacities since joining the TOUR in 2005, including the Marketing and Communications areas of the TOUR as Chief Marketing Officer, and oversight of all aspects of the TOUR’s strategy as a global tour in his position as EVP, International. During his time at the TOUR, Ty was part of the team that advocated for golf’s inclusion in the 2016 Summer Games and served as Executive Director for the International Golf Federation—recognized as the representative body for golf by the International Olympic Committee.
“I’d like to extend a heartfelt thank you to Ty for his immeasurable impact to our organization and his overall contributions to our sport,” said PGA TOUR Commissioner Jay Monahan. “His combination of leadership, business acumen and diplomacy has undoubtedly changed the LPGA, the PGA TOUR and the global game for the better. Having spent over half his life within the industry, his depth of knowledge and strength of relationships are second to none, and we are appreciative that we can continue to draw upon that expertise as he moves into retirement but stays close to the TOUR and our interests.”
“In thinking back over the last 30 plus years, I consider myself the luckiest guy in the world to have worked with and learned from visionary leaders like Jay Monahan and Tim Finchem at the PGA TOUR, Charlie Mechem and Jim Ritts at the LPGA and countless other talented players and individuals in both organizations and across the golf industry,” said Votaw. “It was an honor and a privilege to team with [then CEO of The R&A] Peter Dawson in leading the industry’s efforts to bring golf back to the Olympics in Rio. Moving forward I am looking forward to helping and supporting the PGA TOUR and the game of golf in any way I can.”
Over the past five years as EVP, International, Votaw has partnered with other business areas within the TOUR to drive international growth across all business lines. This includes media, corporate sponsorship, licensing, TPCs and the development of several official tournaments and multiple tours outside the United States.
In his role as Executive Director and then Vice President for the International Golf Federation, Votaw worked on behalf of the IGF and the sport as a whole to ensure golf’s re-entry into the Olympic Games was a success, which it ultimately proved to be. Gold medalists Justin Rose of Great Britain and Inbee Park of South Korea highlighted captivating play throughout the two weeks in Rio De Janeiro that saw six different nations claim medals before sellout crowds on the final day of the men’s and women’s competitions. Significant international television reach and highly positive media coverage were a major part of golf’s triumphant return to the Olympics for the first time since 1904. That work continued with the successful staging of the men’s and women’s golf competitions at the Tokyo Olympics last year.
During his seven years as Commissioner of the LPGA – the youngest in the organization’s history – he developed and executed a Fans First strategic business plan, designed to enhance the fan experience and increase the marketability of the association and its players. The plan produced record increases in tournament attendance, television viewership and prize money for LPGA players. International television coverage and the LPGA’s international tournament portfolio also increased significantly under Votaw’s leadership. Votaw joined the LPGA as its first General Counsel in 1991. As the LPGA’s Vice President of Business Affairs from 1995 – 1998, Votaw oversaw all business activities of the organization, including sponsorship, tournament development, television and licensing.