“I’m leaving people that I’ve really become close to and we have a great staff that has been here for years. They are such quality people.” – Boris Uvakov
Flagstick Golf Magazine reached out to Ottawa Hunt & Golf Club GM / COO Boris Uvakov shortly after we learned this week that he had accepted a position with Maple Downs Golf & Country Club in Maple, Ontario for the 2019 season. He has been in his role in Ottawa for the last three seasons, critical ones for a club that has undergone big architectural development and hosted one of Canada’s largest golf events.
“Not that I’m sorry to go to Maple Downs and not that I’m sorry to return to my family,” Mr. Uvakov personally with Flagstick.com, “but it’s tough leaving The Hunt. It’s one of the best clubs in the country and they’ve treated me like gold here. I was able to break it to each director personally which was nice of our President to give me that time. There were tears flowing both ways, it was just so hard. It’s really special here; the members, the atmosphere and what the course has become in the past few years has just been unreal. It’s truly with mixed emotions that I do this.”
Boris talked about the situation where his family was unable to join him in Ottawa due to unforeseen circumstances.
“My family was supposed to join me in Ottawa. I came in here in January and for the next school year they were supposed to come, but you know what, there was some illness in the family on my wife’s side and she didn’t want to leave and she had to take care of them and we’re at the point where there are elderly parents and that became an issue. And then my son, who is 14 now, has started to become a top world class gymnast and in the last few years he has been a Canadian Junior Champion in tumbling. In fact, this past weekend he was in Russia competing in the Junior Worlds. So, he didn’t want to leave his coach and you know when you get to that level, that’s a pretty big deal.
So, when that summer came I thought it was easier for me to come back than to move the whole family, given my wife’s family issues and my son’s coaching, it was easier for me to say you know what, I’ll stay in Ottawa. In some ways it was selfish because it allowed me to stay at the club from 9 in the morning until 10 at night and I didn’t feel guilty because there wasn’t a family to go home to here. So, I dedicated myself to the Club which I fell in love with very quickly but it was selfish because I had a family that needs me. Here I’m having fun in Ottawa by working at one of the best clubs in the country without really the responsibility of raising my family. I have 4 boys with the youngest being 10 and the oldest being 16 and it’s too much to ask my wife to keep on doing.”
A Commitment To The Hunt Club
A number of opportunities in the Greater Toronto Area (GTA) were offered to Mr. Uvakov but he couldn’t walk away from the commitments he had made to the Ottawa Hunt & Golf Club.
“After one year here, there was no way I could leave the Club with the Women’s Open coming up; I have too much respect for The Hunt to do that and after we hosted the Open there was still a lot to be done. I didn’t want my legacy to be here for the Open. I didn’t come here for the Open. I came here for The Hunt and this year we had a spectacular year. Rankings are always nice and we were ranked 9th in the country in conditioning and 47th overall, then being named Club of the Year; that honour happens once in a lifetime.
I’ve had such a fabulous run here and I’m so proud of where we’ve come as a Club that you know what, I’m secure in my legacy here. I’m happy with what I did and what I brought to the club. In the last few hours I’ve received notes from many of the members saying how tough it has been to be away from family. By in large The Hunt Club members are such genuinely nice people. I’m leaving people who I’ve really become close to and we have a great staff that have been here for years. They are such quality people.
After all this talk about how great The Ottawa Hunt & Golf Club is, that being said, I’m excited about going to Maple Downs and being home with my family. I have a great family and a great career and I’m looking forward to the future.”
“Boris has served us faithfully for the past three years, during which time the Hunt has grown in stature to be among the very best clubs in Canada. With a tireless onsite presence throughout the year, Boris views the Hunt as his home in Ottawa and the members as his family,” wrote Ottawa Hunt & Golf Club President Vince Valenti in a letter to the membership. “Boris’ contributions have served to make the Hunt a better club, and we thank him for his dedication, professionalism and passion.”
Uvakov will remain employed with the Ottawa Hunt & Golf Club until late January. They are currently in the processing of hiring a new Head Professional and he is proud to share that they are attracting quality candidates for the role based on the club’s reputation. He will begin his position at Maple Downs in February.
Flagstick Golf Magazine commends Mr. Uvakov for his decision to get home with his family and we wish him all the best in his future endeavors.